He was a lonely man. His wife had passed away many years back. His only daughter had been happily married since a couple of years. His work barely occupied him for a few hours every day.

He began to experience bouts of melancholy. At times, he suddenly felt like crying without any reason.

A colleague gave him the contact of this well renowned shrink in the posh street of the city.  He duly made an appointment.

The receptionist welcomed him warmly as she asked him to take a seat.

His eyes bulged at the various qualifications, many of them international, displayed on the walls. He noted with satisfaction the many important posts his to-be healer held. He felt a vicarious sense of pride at the newspaper cuttings displayed about the columns written and the searing insightful comments made by his shrink on the issues of the day.

The shrink was very busy and he respectfully waited well beyond his given appointment time. Finally, he was bestowed the privilege.

The shrink appeared distracted as he asked him a few questions. He fumbled as he tried to answer them best to the shrink’s standards. In the midst, suddenly, the shrink grabbed the phone to fix a golf match. He gulped nervously and waited humbly awed that the shrink played golf.

Eventually, the shrink mumbled a diagnosis which he could not catch and wrote some medicines. He asked him to follow up in ten days as he waved him away. He walked out in a daze clutching the precious piece of prescription.

He bumped into the receptionist who spilt a glass of water on him. She apologised profusely and took him to the psychologist’s room. His had been the last appointment of the day and the clinic was almost empty. He protested that it was his fault but she insisted he have a hot cup of tea as his shirt dried. It had been a while since someone else had made him a cup of tea.

He relaxed and sat back in his chair as the receptionist fussed over him. She asked him about himself and he basked in her concern as he spoke. He found himself opening up to her and to his own self, seemingly without much effort. He was surprised to hear himself worry about what would happen as old age and ill health approached. She seemed to understand.

He thanked her for the tea and got up gingerly. She helped him get back on his feet. She held him.

He left the clinic feeling lots better, younger and optimistic.

The contact had been healing.