Sunday, January 26, 2014

Guilty as Charged

How about certain moments of our life which makes itself very memorable due to certain of our lies, misdeeds ….yes I am talking about the darker side of an individual, the so called ‘grey shades’ of a person. It may or may not be as serious as to be called a “crime” which ends somebody in jail but it may or may not be as casual also as not be called a “crime” because after all it was intentional.

My sister was born when I was exactly eight years and seven months. So my reign ended, not that I was a victim of “sibling rivalry” but sometimes I just felt plain happiness in scaring her. When she was around four or five, I used to take her to our beloved Gymkhana ground; this is our desi “Eden Garden”. Those days it was covered with tall grasses and for a four year old it used to reach till her chest. I basically used to take her for a small play so that she can run around and get some open fresh air. Of course I used to play with her but in between I used to leave her in the middle of the grass and hide myself far away. After three to four minutes she used to get really scared standing alone and the moment her face got distorted into a big cry, I used to emerge and I played this several times in one outing and simply loved her scared expressions. Ive told her this; I mean after she grew up but haven’t told my mother yet. 

This incident happened in Shanta mam’s class when I was in fourth standard. I was really quite a dumb girl in my primary classes. I was a below average student and not into sports or any extracurricular activities and also very silent. Once when we were reading through our lesson “The Tajmahal”, our teacher suddenly asked us “Who all have seen The Tajmahal?” I knew Tajmahal was somewhere in Delhi and it was one of the wonders of the world and that was it. Till today I don’t understand what had gotten into me that I stood up with seven others of my class. I lied that I had seen “Tajmahal” and the whole universe were a witness to it. I was so affected by this lie of mine that whenever any conversation between any friends had “Tajmahal” in it, I used to go numb fearing that someone would point out just now “Hey Shaima, you had been to it, how many front doors are there” or “how many minars are there” . This lie of mine actually became a nightmare for me and I was living with this until finally one day my would be husband to impress her would be wife asked “Where do you want to go for honeymoon?” No guesses for the correct answer. As I stood in front of the Tajmahal along with my husband, I was all smiles as I was finally getting relieved from this lie. 

I hated bathing when I was young. I lie again; okay I still hate to take bathe so I skip the Sundays. During those lazy childhood days whenever I felt like not having bath, I used to throw mugs of water inside the bathroom pretending as if I am taking bath to my mother who used to be in the next door kitchen. I just used to wash my face and hands and come out. I very recently told her this and she gave me very dirty look. Well I deserved it. 

Our favorite pastime during my childhood days was going to “Marina Park”, this park has been the sole companion of all the children here in Andamans especially kids born in the 70s and 80s (until of course “Gandhi Park” came into picture). Those days Marina Park was like a huge gorgeous garden with flowers of beautiful colors and varieties adorning the entire place. It was such a splendid sight entering into the park and taking in the beauty. And not forgetting to mention the ’maalis’ who might have really done such a task of decorating and maintaining the entire place. And yes “nobody was allowed to pluck any flowers”. Okay, so once I had gone like the normal evening-outs with my friend Hema and Devamma( she was my mom’s helper) to the park and were playing in the swing. Later as we were roaming in the garden, I very carefully plucked a beautiful huge (yes it was...) hibiscus flower and put it in my jeans pocket. Then after much playing as we proceeded back to home, a maali blocked our way and asked us “u guys are plucking flowers, isn’t it?” I was shocked but tried to keep the expression away from my face and boldly answered back to him(You see, among Hema who was three years younger to me and Devamma, I was the smartest) “ what are u saying, we were just playing”. Within a snap he came forward and pulled out the hibiscus flower from my jeans pocket which I was hiding securely (well I was a kid) and asked “What is this, then?” I was dumbstruck, in fact we all were. Saying this he scolded us and left. I was embarrassed to the core and we all ran from there. Needless to say, I did not visit Marina Park for so many months after that. Very unfortunately Tsunami destroyed the entire park and they had it rebuilt but nothing close to what we had experienced in terms of the garden.

I think this happened in class seven, this incident doesn’t exactly fall into this category but come on, it is my blog, I can write whatever I want, wherever I want, isn’t it? As I said, I was a dumb girl in my childhood days (I stress this every time coz I became a real bookworm in my Senior Secondary and very very vocal during my college days). Quite obvious, I was not the first ten choices for any girl’s friend options. I had limited friends and I was happy among them. There was a girl “Devarchana” and she used to be the hot favorite among all and I don’t remember exactly but we had some serious conflicts those days. She was hosting a big party and those days having a party only for the friends was not even luxury, it was considered to be a phenomenon. Everybody was busy talking about the party venue, dress what one is going to wear and I again had a silly fight with her. In front of my entire friend circle, she shouted at me and asked me “You don’t like me, isn’t it?” It was a moment of decision, the party, food, fun, friends were dancing in front of me and I blurted out at the top of my voice ” I hate u, I hate u” ( Yes, you got it right, I said that twice). I think only seven of us including both the sections did not make to her precious party list. Rest as we all say, Que sera sera.

This incident occurred in Axis Bank. One of my so called friend’s (wait when you read what I did) birthday was there and I was very much aware of it. Now the custom of Axis Bank was this that we all celebrated every employee’s birthday (some definitely got missed due to it falling on holidays or some new entrants whom we never bothered and some rare forgotten cases). I was so pissed from her behavior in the bank that I did not wish her and did not remind others also so that nobody wishes her on her big day. That day somehow passed and quite obviously, she was so depressed. Things took a turn when early next morning my boss called me and told me that we had skipped her birthday and we need to makeup that mistake so I was give the charge of celebrating it. I couldn’t believe it but still I did not lose hope. I went to the market to get a gift and selected the worst possible necklace for her (tacky and cheapo type). The look on her face when she opened her gift…..PRICELESS.

I could think only of these as of now but I would definitely add the wicked side of me more.


Steve E said...

YES, I will comment. I MUST comment, b/c I have known just SO many people like you, bpoth men and women--as children of course, boys and girls. Or maybe it was just, simply, only...ME!

Somehow, when I habitually acted out insanity with such selfishness involved, and much gratification, I expected that everyone else was like that TOO--but they were not...(sigh)

Forty years and more, I was a game player...with people being my game pieces. And I also was ashamed of my behaviors..even as they continued.

Well, one day (aso I was alcoholic, which I found had very little to do with alcohol--the symptom!), one day when after age 40, I sobered up...all those character traits (unwelcome) stayed with me, as if stop drinking would cure! NO WAY!

I had to change--a COMPLETE PSYCHIC CHANGE, they told me. That could only come about with a change in my thinking, and my way of life

Now, long-time sober, SOME of those changes have come about, slowly, but surely.

And GUILT? Bye-Bye-Baby! Anything in past is not worthy of a single thought, unless it is to learn from. OK? GIRL, I sure (again?) apologize for length of this comment-ary, it is one of those character traits which God has not lifted from me yet. Guess He thinks I'm not ready--grin!

Shy said...

Steve, it is always a delight to read ur comments. Certain traits take a long time to go and certain don't go at all. You are right , we should consider all the past as lessons and try to improve the future.
You have managed to change and that is great...

Almas Kiran Shamim said...

You are lyin agn.. i was not four or five yearrs old...coz i remember my 4 and 5 years ke times... I was a little baby and u used to do this to cruel of you!!

i did know a few of em... but the devarchana thing... My God!!!! I mean MYYY GOOODDD!!!!!

and one second if u urself didnt like bathing and did all this nautanki... why on earth did u scold me wen i used to lie about using soap while washing my face.


Shy said...

Yes you were 4 or may be 3 yrs 11 months okay...BADA baat mat Karo. Why " oh my god" for the 'devarchana' thing. I don't know, last I heard about her was that she was suffering from cancer....very sad...
And why will I not scold u when u acted to wash ur face....u simply acted, u dirty girl. I was being just extra nice towards u, so that u become uhmmmm beautiful. Unfortunately that didn't happen.