How confused am I?
But then I have obtained the bragging rights fair and square... so I will continue to do so! But since I cant dedicate yet another post to this.. I have decided to move on.. from brilliance to confusions (I knew this would seem more realistic to you!)
And I have reason to worry too.. when Cheeky was a wee thing of 2 he once told a stranger that his name was "Ronak". I was amused but in the hustle and bustle that was my life those days, let this observation slip through my scatter brained self! A few days later sure enough when he was asked his name by a friend he claimed it was "Ronak". I wondered where he had gotten that impression. After all we had spent the better part of 9 months arguing about a name for the little imp. We wanted a name that was Indian, traditional, modern and which would hold up in a place like America without getting obscured when it rolls of an American tongue. So after a lot of deliberation and careful thought (bah!! not to mention hair tearing arguments) the name was chosen and put on the birth certificate. Also on the 28th day of birth uttered three times into the wee ear thereby officially sealing the deal. Yet here we were just 2 years later and this little brat was renaming himself! He claimed he liked the name "Ronak" better and wanted to be called that! (Pict Courtesy : mindflirting.wordpress.com)
A couple more years have passed and he has learnt to live with the name his parents decided for now. He no longer likes "Ronak" he claims and for now he has not thought of any other way he would like to be called. But as I sat reading The Namesake a loud gasp escaped and I asked M what he would say if after High School our son re-baptized himself to "Ronak". No one takes me seriously of course, so if the inevitable happens I will just learn to live with it! But dont expect me to be happy about it!
Meanwhile I have been coming across a lot of articles about ABCD's. I had always found the term funny without actually relating to it. But now that I can start relating to it, I think its wrong!! They are not confused, we are the confused lot! This breed we call ABCD although very alien to us, are very clear in their allegiances and are not confused even the teeny weeny bit!
This summer when we were in India, a friend of mine gifted Cheeky with a Sherwani.. he thought it was "awesome" and I breathed a sigh of relief. This guy had never seen a sherwani, and thankfully I did not have to sell the idea to him. So I let him adorn the awesome clothes and told him we are off to a Birthday Party. "Alright" whooped Cheeky! Clueless that I am, I never thought to tell him that it was a 1st bday "Ayushhomam". The surprise on Cheeky's face began when I turned up in a shiny Saree to go. "Why are you wearing that?" he asked. "That is what people wear here" I answered shushing him up for then and cursing myself for not heeding to my friends and turning up in jeans for every Indian party or temple we ever went to! After all they had warned me this would happen! At the party the surprise grew when he saw a crowd of hundred's. What kind of party has so many people? My son immediately retreated behind my legs and quietly inquired "Has the cake been cut?". I had to explain this was not a cake cutting but a praying party like the pictures he has seen of his first birth day! (pic - choiceindiasherwani.tradeindia.com)
Then came the real surprise. Leafs laden with food. "Hey whats that?" the imp asked! I explained that this was how food was eaten looking around to make sure no one was listening to my son's ignorance of Indian ways. Can't have the Indian Mami's telling me on how to bring up a kid with appreciation of "our customs". But when Cheeky asked loudly "So do they eat the leaf now?" I gave up! We went and sat down to eat and Cheeky was seen asking the server mama "Excuse me sir may I have a spoon?". Sure enough the guy produced a spoon and much to the amusement of the party this little guy proceeded to eat with a spoon off a leaf and 5 minutes later was seen whispering "Don't they have happy meals for kids?"
If you are thinking this is the story of an ABCD, you are wrong! Recently Cheeky's cousin celebrated his birthday. When informed, he wisely asked "So what kind of party was it Indian or American". So in his mind he is very clear.. I am the confused one! (pict courtesy: flickr.com)
Then there was the Independence day. July 4th I baked a cake and we had a picnic lunch with a couple of Cheeky's friends! Come August 15th (Indian Independence day) I was guilt ridden in the tug of war that is my mind! So I suggested that we bake a cake. Cheeky obliged me and mixed and poured and did most of the preparation all by himself. We cut the cake singing Happy Bday to India! A few days later Cheeky asked me .. "So when is Australia's Independence day? Lets bake a cake for that!". Aaah, the 3 countries he is aware of. One that he lives in, the other that he originated from, and the third one owing to the fascination with Kangaroo's (Roo's hometown) and Koala bears.
On Janmashtami, I asked Cheeky to wear the Sherwani his aunt got him. He obliged me and sat down to watch "Bob the Builder". I prepared all delicacies and put it in front of God and told him that if he closed his eyes Krishna would come eat! So my very amused little imp stood there with one eye closed waiting for Krishna. Then he said "I dont think he is coming today, can I eat?". I try not to argue with his brand of logic. But I asked him if he would dress up like Krishna for me! A few pictures and I could look good among relatives who would praise me for bringing up my son with awareness of "our traditions and customs". I know you are wondering if none of these people really know me? They do, which is why they need photographic evidence! But the imp looked at me suspiciously and asked "Is it Halloween?". What if his mom had tricked him and not said a word about Halloween.. he could have spent the better part of the month shopping for costumes after all! Now that is an idea, shush lets not tell him Halloween will be here soon.. and lets not put up the pumpkins this year.. now if only my neighbors would co-operate!!
Oh well, I try my best to confuse him and he tries his best to make sense of my confused world! And we still live in perfect harmony !!(knew you wouldn't buy that!!)