She was drowning. The swirl of sparkling green salty sea water was all around her. And the silence. Deafening and final. A moment ago, her father was holding her and nudging her to jump with the oncoming wave. She was with her family, visiting Puri for their summer holiday. A moment later she was underwater. Her father wasn’t holding her anymore. At seven, one doesn’t really get scared of dying. But she felt lonely, for the first time. Suddenly all alone. The water around her was filled with froth and bubbles whispering eka eka eka.
The protagonist from her favourite author says, ‘You don’t know which way to turn to climb out of loneliness. So you turn which ever way you can.’