A close friend of ours was leaving our place after staying with us for a couple of days during the Christmas break. Upon being asked if he would like to tag along with them, he didn’t waste a second before answering ‘Yes’. Thus happened the first sleepover for Anirud without us. Despite the fact that he had been to that friend’s house several times and also that they are just an hour’s drive from ours, we felt it odd and different that he was away.
On the other hand he was cool, enjoyed the stay very much and even looked forward to the next one. Perhaps, this is what one means by ‘peththa manam piththu…’
I had to make a short trip to India and for practical reasons I travelled alone. Anirud didn’t like the idea when I was booking the ticket and I expected it to be a problem as we never discussed it afterwards. However, when I talked to him about that a week before I started, he seem to have reconciled with the fact that he won’t be travelling with me. “Only five days Appa and you should be back”, he said.
I was there for my father’s sashtiabthapoorthi (60th year celebrations), which was termed by Anirud as “Sampath thaatha’s birthday party”. Althrough my stay in India, which incidentally got extended, I talked with Anirud over the phone and it appeared that I started missing him a lot more than the other way round. The sweetest thing was the way in which he used to describe every day affairs paying so much of attention to detail, as if I have never been here in UK. Among other things, I bought him a small carrom board – that he loves so much and a 3-D puzzle.
During a casual chat with Anirud about his school, friends and life in general, he said with a sort of worried tone “M said that her mom is dying appa. But her mom is coming to the school daily to pick up M. How could this happen?”. For a moment, we thought that his friend’s mom could have been seriously ill. But then, we know who that person is and more than that, know very well that she was not ill. Upon digging further, it seems that his friend M could have meant ‘dyeing’. How easy it would have been, had she used the word ‘colouring’? 🙂