MIDWAY : Mission impossible

I am practically cheesed off doing one humdrum chore: trying to keep my home dust-free. I thought dust-free mission, like charity, begins at home.

And my intention was noble and aboveboard: if each of us kept our home dust-free, we would end up having our locality clean and if each locality were clean, we would be, sooner or later, dwelling in a dust-free city.

Well, some might argue it should be other way round: keep the city clean and each home will be a dust-free zone. And in this particular vicious circle, I surmise there is no middle path a la Buddha.

Anyway, I started plugging away at the mission just to realise that having one’s home dust-

free simply implied a cloud-cuckoo-land.

I finish dusting the house and am all at sea to notice, few hours later, all back to square one: fine dust layer covering the newly cleaned-up parts of the house. Had I botched something earlier in the process? No way!

Every day, I realised, my mission was biting the dust. I concluded carrying such an albatross around my neck was a game not worth the candle, as ‘invisible’ dust storms in Kathmandu were a routine ordeal.

Consequently, my mission shrank to keeping only my room dust-free, forget home! And would that be possible?

You kidding? Some kind of gut feeling snapped at me. To tell you the truth, my relatives alike blasted my idea of a ‘dust-free’ room in Kathmandu.

“Forget your room, you won’t even be able to keep your match-box dust-free”, one friend thus went into merry-making.

How very true! I enter my room and see ubiquitous dust traps: my computer screen smeared with some fine peppery dust, ditto for the TV, carpet wearing a different colour due to dust, hardly legible dusty book-covers, a light pat on the curtains and dust just storms out of the room. Good grief!

Hence, I confess I am a loser in the ‘dusting’ mission. The only ‘tiny’ space I’d like to keep dust free now: my lungs.

That’s a mission impossible, you’d say and perhaps sing along with Nepal’s perennial favourite Narayan Gopal: who can say whether life is dhulo or sindoor?

Well, it’s dhulo, at least in Kathmandu.