My grandma used to say, “Everything, when it comes, brings joy, and everything that passes leaves behind sorrow.” Granny attached the void to the festivities that are just over — when all her children and grandchildren gathered at home for celebrations and left her after a few days — and when all she is left to do is to brood over their next arrival.

Festivals like Dashain and Tihar came to her with a bash. All the family members united for merry-making throughout the holidays. When the festivities took leave till next year, she once again became the fussy old housewife, looking after the kitchen, the farm, the cattle, with the old grandpa as her only soulmate. Her joyous moments would also be the times when a newborn arrived in the family. But that too would be short-lived, as one day they would also leave her in her solitude, for missions she said they did not have to accomplish.

I come to terms with Granny when, after a few days of freedom, I have to bring myself to work. Dashain and Tihar got me into the sheer ecstasy of meeting family members and relatives, preparations at home, rituals, worships and blessings, and taking a few days off from office.

But when it’s time to get back on tracks I feel as if a heavy boulder has been placed on my back. I have to work hard to get into the monotonous mood of office work again. Back

to the same desk and same old sets of files — the workplace never appears so dull as during this hang-over period.

Like a state just reeling from a serious economic slump, the first few days at work, after long holidays, become unbearingly sluggish. My festive mood has not yet got over. As if cursed with a doomsday, I sit in my room doing little but remembering the days that have just slipped by.

Thank God, I do not have to wait long for a fresh round of festivities. Throughout the year, we have so many cultural and religious holidays that few other countries can rival. No wonder, Christians make merry during Christmas with a long holiday. Ditto for Muslims.

But I think we’re still way ahead. Is it because of our 330 million deities or our work culture? Never mind, the Gita holds us responsible for our own karma!