As i was having tea in my mug, I realized that the poor thing had developed a slight little crack on its handle! Oh what a pang I got! You see, I had been using this baby for the last 10 years, ever since my dear dear friend angie had gifted it to me on my birthday! It was love at first sight! The mug, so soft and round- as if made expressively to be held in my palm, to be caressed by my fingers!- would never fail to fill me with a sense of peace and quiet, almost as if it were my companion, my friend. I can’t even count the number of winter nights I have spent hooking my fingers through its handle, the others curling around its body, as it held some steaming hot liquid- be it simple plain water or an assortment of herbal teas or even soup or Maggi! The warmth of the mug- not too hot yet warm enough to thaw my freezing fingers- would warm me up all the way to my very soul, enough to make me sigh. My foggy sighs would then mingle and intertwine with the steam rising from the mug, mesmerizing me with the strange patterns and swirls they both would together create. Soon, even before I would be done drinking, I would invariably have a sheen of moisture all over my face! The long winter nights, which unfailingly came with its usual stock of cramps, colds and headaches, would make me crave for teas and soups. And again this very mug, loyal and faithful, would stand unflinching at the onslaught of scalding water until my tea would be properly steeped, my soup perfectly thick and ready.
Those nights full of drudgery, when the scepter of exams and submission deadlines would keep me awake, I could find solace only in the comforting warmth of this very mug. As i would sip and sniff at the erotic taste of coffee, freshly brewed, i would know without a doubt that i was going to survive, that everything was to be all right. Then the days, when in the throes of creative frenzy I would forget all else and just write, write and write, it would be my mug- glistening wet with condensation or with its sneaky vapors swirling around my nose with its tantalizing aromas- which would bring me back to earth. It would be its solid touch that would remind my brain that I am wholly mortal and human, with thoroughly humane drives of thirst and hunger, no matter how much my muse might assert otherwise. The days when the sky would be overcast with dark clouds, the breeze pregnant with soft droplets as it ambushed my billowing curtains, the tantalizing scent of wet earth would compete with the aroma of hot tea- clear, dyed deep red- rising from my mug. I would then lean on my balcony, my fingers curling around my mug, and gaze with a soul content sigh at the sulking heavens as lightening would rend the dark sky, with the cool feisty wind splashing against my face..
Whenever my spirit would seem broken beyond hope, this mug would cheer me up. Delectable chocolate mug cakes, furtively made- sometimes in the dead of the night!- would without a doubt lift up my spirits with its irrepressible buoyancy! The taste of the rich and creamy chocolate sponge cake, with its tantalizing smell- even now, just thinking about it makes me drool- would instantly banish the pallor round my heart like sunshine banishes the dark! It would be such a heady mix that i would end up baking a number of different mug cakes and each and every time the microwave would chime and this steaming mug removed from it, I would know that a slice of heaven awaited me!
On days when mom would be out and I would be left to my own devices, I would indulge myself with fluffy mug omelets, made with varied toppings. Sometimes I would whisk the egg with cheese and voila the heavenly aroma of a cheese omelette would fill my house when the beeper went off! Other times it would be the aroma of a plain old green chilly and tomato omelette that would send my salivary glands into overdrive. If somehow we would not be stocked with eggs, then my lusty noodle-craving tummy would scream maggi! Boiling the water in the microwave- oh how my fingers would dance round the mug for the mug would be scalding hot!- sprinkling the masala and stirring, soaking the noodles in the soup and keeping a lid on the mug and then the wait! Oh the wait! After a few minutes, my eyes would drink in the tempting sight of slurpy noodles cooked so soft that anyone would melt and sigh! The soup so tantalizing that it would tease my nostrils as it slithered caressingly, sending into overdrive all the erogenous zones of my taste buds! And then the bliss of that first fork-full of pure heaven- the seductive tendrils of the noodles that seem never ending as I slurp my way through them, licking at the small drops of soup that cling to it! And then when I ultimately drink the soup, it’s a riot on my taste buds- fireworks and electricity!
Then there were days so hot that even my clothes would sweat, this would be the mug in which I would pour my ice cold mango shake. The rich frothy mango shake, soft and flimsy as butter on my tongue, would melt in a cool trail as it would slither tantalizingly down my throat… Oh the bliss! Then some days it would be cold coffee gracing my mug, equally frothy and decadent with its bitter after taste, which would only make me yearn all the more for equally bitter dark chocolate!
My love affair with this mug has such a rich and sensual history that nothing can encapsulate all our adventures in all its myriad shades. But now that I am faced with its dispensability as a chain store earthen mug, reinforced by the tiny crack on its handle, I wonder on how many more such erogenous journeys would we both be going now? How many more contented sighs would escape my lips while washing my mug? How many more times would i kiss its brim to get a taste of heaven? The flicking out of my tongue to get the last elusive crumb of my mug-cake or omelette, the dexterous licking of even the last puff of froth left over from my shakes and cold coffees- are these all numbered? After all, a sudden slip onto the ground from my soapy hands or a reflex loss of grip of my scalded fingers and this little beauty- my decadent rover!- would for ever shatter, cracking beyond repair!!
This little crack has made me realize how special this mug is for me. How so many of my memories are tied up with it! For now, the crack is not so threatening. But when no amount of feviquick would keep my mug together, i will fill it with earth and sow the seeds of a flower or a small plant in it. That way, I would still be able to feel its comforting weight and hold it in a warm grasp. It could then continue to work its magic on my senses- rejuvenating me with the greens of its shooting tendrils and filling me with the joy of its fragrance. Our memories together have made my mug so indispensable that i can’t even fathom a life without my mug now. After all, it sure is not just another chain-store earthen mug- atleast, not anymore. It is My Mug.