"Isn’t it always nice to admire the bubble from distance..
Why touch and break it and sink into the sad reality"
She always had money in her hand and their were some relatives of hers who stayed with her in pretendence of taking care of her.. my mad lady was always clean and clothed but never healthy, I knew they seldom fed her, mom said that the relative were always behind her money and were waiting for her inevitable death, which according to them were to occur sooner. She was well learned too.. I have looked at her pace with which she spoke the language of Shelly and Wordsworth with wonder. There was also an Anglo accent in her Tamil, which was so nice to hear.
At times I sit and try to remember her, and draw her with my mind, the thin frame of body, the fair pale wrinkled skin.. The top and skirt and the hat that reminded me of the pre-independence era.. She was an Anglo Indian
She used to sit near me and talk and talk a lot about her brave husband who used to hunt for hobby and her intelligent son who never gave his first rank to any one else, including my dad. When I asked my dad about him, he would let out a small sigh and say in affirmative that her son was a great friend of his and was very intelligent.. But where was he now.. My dad gave me a long silence as answer. My mother said she didn’t know. I was a brave girl and so I asked her.. Ignoring my friend’s advice.
She smiled and made me sit on her lap and went on and on about how her husband and son are in the sea fighting the pirates, I would imagine all of those. Her strong son in the boat, water splashing in his face, and her husband slashing a one eyed pirate with his sword. They were the hero’s of my childhood stories. I awaited them just like her. No one told me that they would never return.
Then a day came, she was gradually thinning but on that day, she was very lean and delicate that I felt a little breeze could easily lift her off the ground, but she was glowing and smiling at me, she called me out and my mom asked me not to go too far.. My parents were never scared to let me with her, she never attacked any one. But other parents were scared, they even warned mine. My dad would say, "Ignore them, I know her from childhood, she is one of the kindest lady.. Sad is her fate.. " the last few words always trailed and I found it hard to hear..
I went with her to the park, and we sat in the swing, she on the swing and me on her lap, I was scared that my weight would hurt her and smash her like tooth paste for she was that slender. I got down and sat in the nearby swing, she looked away for a long time, smiled to herself and said..
"Why touch and break my bubble of life and sink into the sad reality"
I didn’t understand her, I looked wide eyed at her, and she smiled.. She said, "child can u keep a promise.."I nodded obediently, and kept my hand on my heart and swore that I can.. She said, "My son and husband died when they went to Bombay, before 10 years.."
I was shocked.. I never knew they were dead, I thought they were combating monsters in the sea. She continued, "I knew it always, But I never wanted to acknowledge it, so I lived in a different world, the world that I weaved with care and delicacy, the world that I re-lived with you.. When I share those stories with you I imagined them too, I enjoyed the ecstasy that danced in your big eyes.. “and so on.. I didn’t understand the rest, or I don’t get to remember the rest
Then she kissed me for the first time in my life and gave me chocolates, I remembered how my mother eyed me sternly when I tried hard to hide the big secret of mine from her and lied about the chocolates. Then my partner in promise was gone, I never saw her again. Mom said she was taken to hospital and was in hospital and dad sighed, I never got to know where she went
But now I knew, she went to live in her bubble her beautiful little world..in the pirate ship with her husband and son..