Saturday, May 5, 2012

The Father

So there are these Gauri vrats and Jaya Parvati vrats the Gujarati unmarried girls observe.  It's for a good husband.  Each vrat is of 5/7 days, and are to be observed for 5/7 consecutive years.  Girls dress up and eat dry fruits and other fasting food, which is typical to this fast.  All my cousins and friends used to observe this back in school.  (usually these fasts are kept by school going girls, mainly cos they love dressing up and eating dry fruits)

I, on the other hand, didn't observe these fasts.  Well, I once tried it, when I was in 1st standard, and all my friends were observing the fast.  I just wanted to feel like one of them.  I fasted for 3 days, and I hated the fasting food.  I don't like dry fruits and other "fun" stuff girls apparently loved.  That evening, the dinner was hosted for all the "fasting" girls at naani's place.  She had invited all the cousins, and it was to be one big happy dinner.  Just that, I was sitting in a corner, because I didn't like anything that was cooked. (c'mon, I was 5)

Dad came from his office to pick up sister and me.  He saw me sitting in a corner, having lost all the smile from my face.  He asked me if I had eaten anything.  Apparently, I hadn't.  He took me to this south indian food joint, and I ate a rava dosa and broke my fast.  He never let me fast again.

Dad and I have frequented the fairs and exhibitions that happen in the city.  We go, check out ridiculous stuff, interesting stuff, and come back, usually with a bottle of organic rose syrup.  We would observe people, and have conversations on what would they be talking about.  He would also point out strange looking women in the crowd and ask, 'doesn't she look like your mom/sister?' (depending on who was with us, and we would high five each other.)  Two days back, we went to this book fair.  Neither of us got any books, but well, we did eat a vadapav there.  On the way back, while I was driving, and he was sitting next to me, he was generally talking about how he is proud of his daughters.  He said he is glad he has brought up well, and before he could appreciate us any further, he changed topic and talked about Govinda in Sandhi Sudha plus ads! He's like this, he has never appreciated any of my achievements.  Maybe he is not the kinds who can express himself well, but then, for any daughter, the validation that matters the most to her is from her father.

And then, it's the sense of humour.  I think I'm funny. Random, yes, but funny too.  It is the Mehta gene that makes us like that.  I guess, only we find ourselves funny, but then, that's okay. :P

Sample this conversation I had with him few years back while I was getting my passport renewed.

Me : But Pappa, wasn't this police inquiry thingy removed from the passport procedure? I
applied with Didi only and she got her new Passport without any inquiry!
He : Perhaps you are having some kind of criminal record.
Me : hmph, Perhaps my father has some kind of criminal record.
He : Did you see they had the kaachi jail for the first time offenders?
Me : No. You should have shown me! I never saw a jail!
He : Don't worry, you might just get a chance to be there!
Me : Pappa, please! I am your daughter!

Needless to say, not many people get our jokes. :P

But now, the thing is, he has probably not yet fully accepted that I have grown up.  Or if he has, he is in denial that I can take decisions independently, without involving him all the time. And that I could drive on the highway, for over 300 kms, while he sits in the backseat. That the roles have reversed.

We fight, we argue, we throw tantrums (oh, yes, fathers can also throw tantrums).  We may not tell sorry to each other, but after that one argument we have, dad brings home my favourite chocolate cream biscuits from this bakery, and slyly asks mom to put them in my room, just to break the ice.

And just like that, things are normal, till the next time I bring up a revolting idea to him.


Nalin Mehra said...

Ur so lucky to enjoy, fight talk and share with ur dad.... Unlike people like me who lost their DAD..... I lost my DAD when I was in sixth grade.

Bubblegum.... said...

Very well written!! :)