I’m not very good with kids. I have this innate fear that if I hold a baby, I’ll drop it (her/him), break its neck, or do something else that I can’t even fathom. It has not been easy getting over this fear, but in order to overcome it I make a conscious effort to interact more with young kids. So the other day when we had a family with a five year old girl (B) over for dinner, I took it as the perfect opportunity to tell my brain to not be scared of kids. Turns out however, you should be!!
B: Mumma, mai EF ko didi bolo ya aunty?
BM (B’s Mom): Beta, didi bolo.
B to me: EF didi, kya aap mere saath game play karogi?
EF : Haan, bolo what do you want to play? *Preparing mentally for house house or doctor doctor or teacher teacher*
B: Truth or dare
EF: *looking at BM and wondering if I heard right*
BM: ArreyEF, I’m so sorry.. pata nahi from where she learns all this. She forced me to play it with her yesterday and her dare was to make ten plaits out of my hair! It’s fun yaar, you should try..
EF: *Thinking feverishly of reasons I can make to save myself from looking like a clown*
B: Aapko darr lag raha hai? Mai aapke boyfriend ke baare mei nai poochongi.
EF *whispering to BM*:
Where is she learning all this yaar? Is she really five?!
BM to B: Behave yourself B. Go to EF didi’s room, she’ll show you her new computer.
B: *Reluctantly* Okay
EF: *Reluctantly* Okay
B: Computer toh boring hai. Didi, aapka make up box kahan hai?
EF: Huh? kaunsa make up box?
B: Jismei woh muh pe lagane waali chizein hoti na? Red and yellow waali
EF: *Yes, it seems she is talking about lipstick.. and that too yellow lipstick*
EF: No B, I don’t use make up.
B: Oh, Isliye aapne apne lips pe color nai lagaya. Aap kitney boring ho!
EF: Aap make up use kartey ho?
B: Haan, kubbi kubbi jab mai birthday party mei jaati hun na. Mumma, school pehen ke nai jaane deti.
EF: Accha. Ye batao aapki best friend kaun hai?
B: School mei meri best friend C hai aur ghar pe D.
EF: D aapkey ghar ke paas rehti hai?
B: Haan, woh na humari captain hai.
EF: Captain? Kiski?
B: Chhupan Chhupai ki (hide N Seek ). Woh mujhe jeetne mei help karti hai.
EF: *Uncomfortably tongue tied again*
B: Aapko toh chhupan chupai khelna bhi nai aata hoga na?
It was a rude eye opener. Bacchey mann ke sacchey.. so first of all, B is right – I am boring. But I was so surprised at how different today’s five year olds are from what we were. Or was I the only one who belonged to some weird age where we played lock and key, chor and sipahi? And make up? Is this what is known as the “Generation gap” that I complained about to my parents? I’ve become old *Sigh*