Wednesday, May 10, 2006

I Know It All

It was raining last evening as I was walking towards Margosa road to draw some money from the ATM. I saw people huddling under trees and shops to protect themselves from the rain. There was this particular family that intrigued me. Much as they were intrigued by a room with glass doors where people went in and came out either with a slip of paper or with real money.
There were a couple of people in the queue before me and as i was waiting for my turn, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation doing its rounds between the members of this family. There was a man and a woman (wife and husband, I assume), a girl about ten and a boy about eight. They were obviously waiting there for the rain to stop and were sitting just outside the ATM.
Their conversation was in Kannada (which I have traslated here)

Woman : What is that, everytime each person comes out he has something in his hand.
Man: Yes looks like paper.
Girl (with an annoyed look) : Arre, didn't you see, they come out with money.
Boy: Money? But there is nobody inside the room, who gives them the money?
Girl: Ayyo, there is some machine inside, that gives them money.
Boy (laughs) What are you talking like a manga (monkey) for?
Girl : Ok, then you tell me, how do they get that money.
Boy: That money is from their own pocket.
Girl: No, they put it in their pocket. Observe carefully, idiot.

I wish I could listen a little more but it was my turn to go in. And as I came out, I heard the boy whisper, ' she has no money in her hand'. To which the girl replied, like she knew it all, 'she put it in her purse'.

Something about the girl made me smile. Maybe her observant eyes, I don't know what. Infact, sometimes kids do fascinate me when they have that triumphant look on their faces. Like the time I saw this little girl in Forum. She was on the escalator heading downwards. And you could make out from the look on her face that she was feeling good and proud about the whole thing - she looked like a queen being carried everywhere in her palanquin. And kids continue to fascinate me with those expressions- be it in a quiz show on TV or when they win a cricket match in the neighbourhood or get a pat on the back for being a 'good boy'.
There is some kind of joy that these little expressions exude- joy that have an uncanny way of touching that cord in your heart.