Childhood Memoirs

The day started as any other day. I got up early and got ready for work and left home around 9 in the morning. It was chilly outside, I hugged my jacket a little closer. The wind was blowing hard, making my hair to fall over my eyes and blur my vision. A squirrel hurried away with a peanut as I walked past it. A little boy in a red sweater was walking ahead of me. Suddenly he stopped, turned back and shouted “Didi.” A girl about two or three years older than the boy was walking just beside me. She started running towards the little boy. My eyes filled with tears with that little shout of the little boy, “Didi.” (In bengali didi means elder sister.)

I kept on walking and tried not to cry. A whole bunch of memories flashed inside my mind. They came like the ocean tides, one after another. Me and my little brother playing hide and seek in a small valley situated at the lap of mighty Himalayas. We used to play hide and seek outdoors. Once my brother was not able to find me for a long time. I kept myself hidden behind a bush of bamboo tree. It was late afternoon and the sun was about to set. I kept my eyes on my brother who anxiously looked for me. Suddenly he began to cry and said “Please leopard don’t take my didi. Didi where are you? I will never quarrel with you or hit you, please come back.” I came running from my hideout and hugged him and he began to cry even more. He said he thought that I have been taken by some Himalayan leopard.

I assured him nothing can take me away from him. We will always be together. I pacified him by plucking some oranges and giving them to him. We came back home and my brother told my parents how a leopard came to take me and only after he cried and said he needs his didi, the leopard left me. My brother said the leopard also had a elder sister, that’s why he understood my brother’s plea. My mom and dad tried hard to hide their chuckle and agreed with my brother.

Years passed on. We were teenagers then. He used to choose dresses for me. If he did not like something I wore, he would make sure that I change that. When outside house, he would behave as if he was my elder brother. “Didi, walk with me. This place is not safe,” he would say. He would always protect me like I am the younger one. The relationship between a brother and sister is one of the most wonderful relations that God has ever created. It is a based on unconditional love and faith. I spent an awesome childhood because I had my brother as a playmate.

Some more years rolled on, I am married now and stay far away from my little brother. And I miss him so much. Whenever I see brothers and sisters together I go back to the memories of me and my dear brother. It makes me happy and sad at the same time. Those are bittersweet memories because I love them but can not relive them.

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Transformation

In response to : Three Perfect Shots

“Look at those clouds mom!” Nicki shouted excitedly.

Anna looked up to catch a glimpse. The clouds resembled the figure of a little girl like Nicki. Anna smiled and said, “It looks like you dear.”

“Isn’t it?” Nicki seemed glad at her own discovery. Soon Nicki got busy with her puzzle games and Anna drifted away into her past, into her childhood.

Little Anna was playing in the backyard of her home. The sun set just a moment ago and the sky still had some golden tints. The clouds were floating peacefully, without any rush. The shapes of the clouds were changing as if some painter was trying to draw the perfect figure over and over again.

‘Why the figures are changing mom?” Anna asked her mother.

Her mother was reading a book. She looked up and smiled at Anna.

“The clouds are like us dear. It changes their forms outside but inside they are all same. They all are droplets of water.”

Anna got curious, “Is that so?”

“Yes my dear.” Mom lifted her and kissed her cheeks.

“You know I was also little like you, I also chased the butterflies and spent all afternoon watching clouds. I was darling daughter of my mom and dad as you are now. Then I grew up, I got married to your dad. I became a wife. I left my parents house to live with your dad. Then after few years you came into our life, I became a mother. New relations were created but that only strengthened the older ones. So, you can see that a single person can be a daughter, a wife and a mother. But inside I am the same person who loves my family. I love my parents, I love your dad and I love you. You will also be a wife and a mother someday my dear.”

“Mom?”

“Yes sweetheart?”

“I will never be a wife and leave you and dad. I love you both so much.” Anna said hiding her face in her mom’s lap.

“We love you to sweetheart.” Mom kissed her cheeks.

Suddenly a cool breeze broke Anna’s trance. She looked Nicki arranging the puzzle pieces. She will also grow up and will leave her nest one day. Her heart became heavy with the thought.

She looked up to the sky and saw it turning dark. The clouds that were resembling a little girl now has turned to a young lady in an attire of a bride.

Bone of Contention

Today’s Writing Prompt: Bone of Contention

The other day I was having a conversation with a dear friend. We know each other from school. She was very upset when she called me. Actually she had a fight with her husband over a small matter. Her mother in law said something mean to her. She did not say anything back to her MIL but later she raised the topic in front of her husband. She only wanted someone to cheer her up and she thought who could be better than her husband? But on the contrary, he just made her feel worse.

Let me describe the whole incident. (My friend’s name is Bee)

Bee just had her dinner and was sitting with her husband in the living room changing channels of TV.

“Who wants a biscuit?” exclaimed her MIL as she entered the room.

“I am full.” said Bee

“Who is gonna give you anyway, right son?” said the MIL.

Bee felt quite annoyed with the joke (teasing?) but replied easily, “OK, as you wish. I will have it myself if I want.”

“Take it yourself? I will chop your hand and break them into pieces if you do so.” came the response from the MIL.

Bee left the hall silently as she did not find words to reply.

The whole incident happened in front of her husband but her husband said nothing to his mom.

That night she told her husband that she felt really bad when his mother talked to her in that way.

Her husband was like, “Are you crazy, can’t you take a casual joke?”

She said she never ever heard of such joke. She was not asking her husband to go to his mom and ask her to stop behaving like that. She just wanted to hear something soothing like, Yea I know you felt bad but don’t worry everything will be alright. Instead his husband said that she was dumb enough not to understand a joke.

He even said that she was intentionally trying to create tensions between him and his mom.

So she called me crying.

I tried to calm her. She asked whether she did anything wrong.

“No, you didn’t. Do not think about it right now and go to sleep. Your husband got angry because his mom is involved in this. Everything will be alright.” I said to her.

After the call was over I sat down and tried to think about the difference between a harmless joke and a harmful one with the intention to belittle the other person.

Many a times people just spew words of contempt under the guise of ‘just kidding, won’t you get that?’

It becomes very hard for the receiver of the joke to prove otherwise because ultimately the blame comes down upon the receiver for inventing hurtful meaning from some ‘benign bunch of words meant to evoke laughter.’ But the reality is they do not evoke laughter but they do hurt feelings of others.

The receiver, if tries to stop these by simply stating that they don’t like such kind of jokes, the narrator feels outraged.

“Oh God! You have such a cunning mind.” All of a sudden the blame of being presumptuous comes upon the victim and the original villain acts as the victim of injustice.

So, overall it’s a tricky situation to end this hurtful teasing game. Joking is okay, but immoral teasing is not.

It was natural for Bee to feel bad because if I were in her position I would have felt the same. The only bad thing is, her husband did not feel the same.