Thursday, February 2, 2012
Tree of Wisdom
Now since the day my hormones acted up, I knew that my being the tallest in the family is going to bring me absolutely no good in future. It didn't. It brought me a slouch. It brought me the embarrassment of being the only head sticking out above the others in family portraits. It gave me the rare privilege of being called up in case a "thotti"(a stick used to pick fruits and stuff from trees) was unavailable. So I had to put an end to my perfect evening setting and prance around the guava tree trying to reach the ones on the higher branches. Then, I don't know if it was my sister or my mom, whoever it is who has been secretly plotting a revenge scheme for the past few days (probably for finishing all the chocolate biscuits in the house. In my defense, that extra few inches of height always makes me a little extra bit hungry always), figured that if I could climb up a little, I'd have better reach to the riper guavas. Okay first of all, the last time I climbed a tree was some 20 million years ago. And secondly, I was wearing a skirt, which is definitely not tree-climbing friendly. And thirdly, the tree was infested with huge red ants. In any case, mom and sister persuaded me. And also because my niece was looking on in awe. So in an attempt to impress a 3 year old, I mount up the first branch.
It wasn't too bad. I soon had both my legs off the ground.
My audience who up until then were shouting up directions burst into laughter. Not very encouraging when I'm engaging in a life-or-death activity here. Anyhow, I proceed higher and with an occasional ant in my mouth and branch poking my ear, I picked my first guava. I waited for an applause. I got none.
Instead my mom hoisted up a stick and told me to pick one on the edgier branches. Seriously, did she think I was training to be a trapezes artist? More shakiness. I managed to pull down a few more guavas. After a couple of minutes of them shouting up simply un-do-able instructions and me shrieking that I was Definitely going to die now, we decided it was enough. Mom told me to slide down a branch like Tarzan does in that cartoon. I looked at it and well, it certainly did look pretty slide-y. Nope, no way, I'm not out of my mind. I'm not a 2D character. I tried to move slowly but steadily.
But being the drama queen that I am, I moaned and groaned and cringed whenever someone even looked at it. The last time I got to put up such a moan-fest was in college when I hurt my finger with a razor while searching for a razor in my bag. It was a bit bloodier then. Cried buckets. My roommates came up with the biggest cloth band-aid possible. Called my folks at home and cried and exaggerated and all. And just like they did today, they laughed at me then too. I live with a bunch of hyenas. And I remember holding it up and waving it at every random person who walked by me. A few were quite offended I think because it was my middle finger that I had hurt.
My mom told me that this fall was probably God's way of telling me I'm too old for this shit now. He's probably sitting up there with His head in His hands going "How many times do we have to go through this?"