It was surreal. I was 11 years old, in the middle of a seemingly normal Deepavali setting—people laughing and playing around me—but I couldn’t hear anything. The atom bomb that I had so bravely held in my hand, to light and throw away at the right moment—removing the paper from the wick to be doubly careful—had flared too quickly and burst six inches from my face. Instantly, I lost all hearing and orientation. The predictable normality of everyday life was transformed into a ghost-like tableau for several seconds.