When I was 8 I used to spend a couple of hours every evening out in the park. We played cricket with Binju's bat, wrestled each other to the ground like we saw on the new cable TV at Debika's upstairs and ran like the wind. I walked really fast trying to match my father's stride, anxious to keep up with my brother. I used to sew most afternoons, creating clothes and accessories and furniture and bags out of scraps of lace, fabric and ribbon. I had my own sewing and craft kits. I used to watch in awe as my brother played games on the computer in 1990. I traumatised myself by babysitting a demanding Chhotima and had great fun playing with Jimm. Didi was my closest confidant in the family while Tua was a bit of an unknown we all took advantage of. Going to buy milk was a huge treat, being allowed to drop the token into the Mother Dairy booth slot.
What did I want to be, back then? I wanted to be a wife and a mother, bossing her little family around. I certainly planned to show my mother how things were meant to be done (feeding my family dinners of just chips.) I wanted to travel the world and I was sure that all my life I would be just as skinny, just as wiry, just as flexible as I was back then. I was dumbfounded that my parents, who claimed to have read lots of Enid Blytons in their time, couldn't remember the minute details of all the plots, and I swore to myself that I would remember each and everything I read. I wanted long hair down to my waist flying in the wind and I wanted shelves full of Barbie things.
- Not fat. Not thin, but not fat yet. Certainly bossy but also softer than I expected to be.
- A wife and a mother, apologising to my mum daily for being such an annoying brat and begging her to lift the curse. Oh I feed my family 'healthy' meals (I eat chocolate for breakfast when the boys are away though).
- Not really well-travelled. I have been around India a bit. Been to Nepal and Singapore. I suppose it's not my karma to travel like I want to though.
- Forgetful of the chapter I read this morning. Enid Blytons seem like a very old dream although I still love them.
- Short-haired but I did have hair down to my waist.
- Very possessive about my Barbie things, now carefully packed away.