‘Back in Time’. Imagine, one fine day, you wake up as a 5-year-old child and not as a grown up! What will you do then?
I guess I woke up early today!
Ah! I will know the time when the alarm starts ringing.
As she lay in that post-sleep, partially-conscious state, someone pulled the curtains. Letting in a plenty of morning light that hit her like a punch to the face. She quickly turned away and buried her face in her hands.
“Aaaaagghhh!!…SHUT THOSE F****ING DRAPES..”
“What!!??..where did you learn that word, young lady!!”
Mom..what!? When did she get her?..how did she get in?
My moms voice startled me..I sat up and opened my eyes to see my slightly stunned, slightly hostile and as angry as hell mom waiting for an answer.
She looked different from the last time I saw her. She looked beautiful.
“Have you dyed your hair?”
She put her hands on her waist and said,”This is your last chance..I am asking one last time. How do you know this word?”
“I dont know..”, I replied sheepishly, knowing full well that she is going to ask another 15 times…
“Dont lie!Did someone at school say that?”
“School..??”… a million defenses popped in my head while my mom began to scold me. But being an Indian I know very well that uttering another word would mean getting slapped or worst being thrown out of the house..even if its my own.
Best is to play..” I am sorry”. I put my head down, bring a tear to my right eye like the Indian daily soaps while being careful not to tearfrom the left one because otherwise its overacting and to complete the ” I am sorry” look, I fold my hands,..
Hands!!..OO MY GOD! So small…
Before I completely observe that my hands have shrunk, I realise that my feet barely touch the ground and are dangling in the air.
My mom finishes lecturing me. Before I could comprehend anything else, her arms reached for me and next second, she picked me up..
Wooohoooo!!.. How is she doing it?!! I am 26 yrs old!!!
Whats happening? Pink gown, that pink doll..i remember that doll, pink bunnies on the wall, toys, pink cupboard…I am going to throw up a pink vomit now.
She dragged the stool near the washbasin with her feet. Had me stand up on the stool. Handed the brush and sternly said to never repeat the word.
Meanwhile, I have questions, millions of them that dies the second I saw a chubby, curly-short haired girl staring at me.
What am I…5 again??!!??
I continued to stare untill my mom commanded me to brush. I reasoned and tried to find a logical conclusion while my mom dressed me up, fed me and put me on the school bus.
Once in there, the kids were constatly crying to go back home and that distracted me a lot. The drooling mouths and running noses could bring about a flood. Frankly, those kids reminded me of the wailing hungry pigs I saw in a documentry on National Geographic once.
I walk into the class,the questions maddening me. I took to a random desk and, began pondering and wondering all over again. Until my teacher’s voice broke into my thoughts. She asked me to recite the alphabets from A to G.
Instantly, I realise if I act smart and do exceedingly well, they might promote me.
So, straight up, I recite from A to Z.
My techer- dumbfounded.
Students- awe struck.
While I stood there basking in the glory and expecting a standing ovation any moment with the slow clap, another realisation struck me- Nobody is promoted in preschool or play school.
Then the teacher called one student to the board and asked him to write the alphabet ‘A’
“Slanting line…”he said and drew a slant line.
“Slanting line and ..sleeping line”
The teacher called me next and asked me to draw ‘B’
I drew the letter. She looked at it for a moment and said,”Its good but you are supposed to say as you write”
I went for it again.
“Standing line..”, I said and drew a straight line.
“Umm..reflected C and reflected C..”,I said and completed the alphavet.
“Yeah, you know, like how the right becomes left in a reflected image and similarly C gets inverted…”
“Inverted C is like this..”, she said and drew a C that looked very much like C itself. I doubted if this woman knew anything at all but this is India and here, the teacher is always right and its always the students fault.
“Okay , then..umm… sleeping ‘U’?
Standing line…1st square ..2nd square..”, I said as I drew a square beside the line and one more square under the 1st square.
“Noo! Its semicircle..””
Everyone burst out laughing and i took to my desk, feeling ashamed and harrassed.
We had maths then. Followed by putting plants in pots and watering them, which looked like child labor to me. Then colouring. Play time where no one wanted to play with me which was fine by me because I didnt want to play anyway. Lunch time where I spat in the sandwiches of those brats. Nap time and lastly singing.
All those activities reminded me of those mental asylums where less intelligent..almost brain dead and horrible psycho criminals are kept and how they are engaged in similar activities to adequately stimulate their brain, keep them occupied and thereby keeping them from harming others.
I got home. Slept and only woke up to hear another round of lecturing from Dad for using the swear word.
I was listening at first..then my mind started to drift untill my dad was completely muted and I was lost in my thoughts…
I am definetely living the Inception. I pinched myself…dont know why.
Or may be someone is pulling a Wudoo crap on me..dark magic and stuff.
But why a five year old!
If they wanted to torture me..they could have made me sit through any main stream bollywood movie or an Indian daily soap.