How I came to own a piece of the sky

How I came to own a piece of the sky

The blue curtain was like a piece of sky on a balmy, summer-scented day

We had barely moved into our new, state-of-the-art apartment when I noticed that though the furniture had arrived and had been arranged artistically, what was conspicuous was that there were no curtains for the bare living-room windows. With fiery resolve and with the muse of an interior decorator’s catalogues burning inside me, I decided to purchase curtain material for the windows in order to make them functional and decorative. Seeing the colour catalogue, I zeroed in on light blue and white coloured curtains .

After buying the cloth, my mind was saturated with ideas of room décor. I got a tailor to stitch the cloth with a white cotton lining to make the curtains fall well. I instructed him to stitch the curtains so that there were gathers of the cloth at regular intervals where the curtain rings were stitched. Indeed, when they were put up with a curtain rod in place, the curtain looked truly beautiful with a billowy effect especially during the time when strong gusts of wind blew.  

The light blue curtains looked like the azure blue sky on a warm summer day and when interspersed with white, looked like cottony white clouds which were filtering, floating and flitting past. During the day, the outside light filtered in causing the curtains to look like it was heaven on judgment day. As the evening ventured forth, the inside electric lights played upon the blue and white curtains with its pleasant easy-on-the-eye look which was neither loud nor jarring.

Next to the curtain on the wall, I hung one of my grandfather’s paintings — of trees painted in watercolours. Keen to have a natural look, the painting did not have a glass casing or frame, but next to the natural curtains, it looked like a perfect sequel.One day, a friend of mine, who was a staunch critic and a trifle cynical came home and, as usual, immediately noticed the curtains. With a snigger, she said, “you buy a model of Taj Mahal and you think that you’ve bought the Taj. Now, you’ve bought some blue and white curtains and you think that you’ve bought part of the sky!”

Undeterred by her remark, I resumed my work. It then rained, the rain coming in, in torrents. The rain managed to seep through the ceiling and walls, causing droplets of water on my grandfather’s painting making the colours run. The curtain, however, became slightly damp as rain has a different effect on cloth than it has on paper. But then the sun emerged and helped to dry the damp curtains and give it a fresh, clean fragrance like a laundered cloth.

My friend who had visited earlier had been wrong. I had not merely thought in my mind’s eye that I had bought a bit of the sky, I had actually bought it — the beautiful blue curtain was like a piece of sky on a balmy summer-scented day.