iMAGE

This is about the importance of image as a child.

It was my earliest encounter with this low-down enemy.

Of all things superflous…this perhaps tops it.

The need to impress one’s peers as a child.

*    *    *    *     *
We had an Ambassador car. Mighty fine it was.

Dad would drop me to school in this car. Every now & then.

I was all of 8 years when this encounter with the enemy of ‘image’ happened.

*    *    *    *     *

Dad drove me to school in his car.

So far so good.

His attire? Yes, what did he plan to wear for the drive?

This is where we had a minor disagreement.

A verbal scuffle of sorts between Father & Daughter.

He planned to drive me to school wearing a L-U-N-G-I !!!

For God’s sake!

Of all the darndest experiences of an 8 year old this was the most trying.

I told him “Wear trousers, my friends will see.”

He did not give in.

His position as Father allowed him to get away with stuff like this.

*    *    *    *     *
Another matter altogether that –
~ He was going to drop me opposite my school gate
~ ~ He was not going to get out of the car
~ ~ ~ None of my friends would have been able to see his clothes to begin with to pass judgement

*    *    *    *     *

Still. Such things rankle at 8.

The image enemy lurketh & rears its ugly head every now & then.

As an adult it’s easier to slay it.

 *    *    *    *     *

Are you a Souveniristic Tourist? Take the test to find out.

                                                                 

Take this quick test to assess just how much of a  souvenir freak you are & if there is any hope left to become normal.

1. Do you collect  magnets of every hill & dale you visit in each country? Yes/No  

 2. Do you collect souvenir spoons as a keepsake of countries you visit?  Yes/No

 3. Do you buy postcards to send friends & family but…like it way too much & keep it for yourself ?  Yes/No

 4. Do you collect foreign coins & postage stamps from every place &  have a neat pile up you know not where to  keep?  Yes/No

 5. Do you bring back a slice of sunshine via a photograph, or a bottle of  sand, or collect shells & pebbles that have that amazzzzing shade you won’t find elsewhere?  Yes/No

 6. Have other people seen your ailment & started bringing back magnets & spoons as gifts for you from their travels?  Yes/No

7. As you flip through books do you discover old tram, train, subway, concert tickets from Godknowswhere that serve as bookmarks? Yes/No

8. Do you preserve museum flyers, local maps as a token of sentiment? Yes/No  

9. Do you have a pile up of mementos of every shape, colour & imagination? Yes/No         

             

10. Do you write blog posts about souvenirs? Yes/No                                                       

 

 

 

Score
Upto 3 Yes  –  You are a happily balanced tourist
Upto 6 Yes  –  You are a tourist tugging away from the rope of normalcy that is trying to detain you
Upto 8 Yes  –  You are a tourist who has broken free from the rope. In  other words you are on the border of souveniritis
All 10 Yes    –  You are a tourist with a case of extreme souveniritis-outta-balancia. Get well soon!

     

An Early Lesson in Humility

One of my favourite memories of childhood…with a lesson for life!

I started cycling to school from Standard IV.

Until then I would often go “dubs” with my elder brother on his bicycle. With this mode of transport, more often than not my back would hurt  so I’d get off mid-way & walk the rest of the way.

Other times my Dad would drop me to school by car.

I certainly preferred the latter.

*  *  *  *  *

Day 1 of cycling to school.

It was now time for the return home from school.

I got on to my cycle. Pride got on to me.

“Tut Tut…not grammatically correct” I hear the English purists say, but what the heck… 🙂

I could not help but think of my friends who had to catch the bus back home.

Here I was in a more elevated position with a bicycle, according to my esteemed 9 year old view point.

*  *  *  *  *

Swaggering style. Over confidence.

One hand on the left handlebar, right hand waving at those mere mortals – schoolmates of mine at the bus stop.

I focused a bit much on the passing them, looking at them, waving at them…in short impressing them.

C-R-A-S-H

*  *  *  *  *

My cycle rammed into a man just ahead carrying a baby. Beside him the wife.

Funny position for him to have landed himself.

Baby in hand, legs astride a school girl’s cycle.

Humbling for me. Humblifying x 100. Humblification.

All this in front of my schoolmates.

The very ones I wanted to impress with this my superior mode of transport.

It was not over.

*  *  *  *  *

A swift  t-h-w-a-c-k  on my back.

Zestily delivered by the wife of the man carrying the baby.

I said sorry.

She snarled at me in Tamil  “Yenna, s-a-a-a-r-y?” (“What, sorry?”)

This too in front of my schoolmates.

Hell hath no fury as a woman whose husband carrying her baby has been hit into. Accidentally notwithstanding.

*  *  *  *  *

The soberest ride back home. Of whatever distance was left.

Pride comes before a fall.

Apparently it’s true.

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