Bedtime Stories

Listening to this really old song from the movie Ghar – Aapki aankhon mein. Beautiful song. One of my favorites. Takes me back to the times when Ma used to put me to sleep by singing. Hazy pleasant memories. A bedtime story and a song I would always insist on. There was this huge pink book of bedtime stories (which I read and re-read till I was 15 I think!) that I could never get enough of. So, tiny little me would lie on ma’s stomach, stay wide awake till the end of the story and then drift off to ma’s singing. My favorite and probably ma’s too, was ‘Do naina aur ek kahani’. It was so easy back then to be content and happy. Baba’s scooter’s horn had me squealing with joy and running to the gate with maniacal speed. Then there was beating Dada at mind games (well, I couldn’t beat him up so I had to be more devious). And the Golden ice-cream wala’s call on a blazing June afternoon. The tears were easy too but they didn’t mean a thing. A flash memory that forgets all that is bad and lights up with a smile a moment later.

Some days, in this grown up’s world, all I wish for is that one night with ma where all you could think of is whether today’s story would have a giant who owns a magnificent palace in a dark dark forest. All I wish for is that one chime of a doorbell and when you open the door, Baba’s right there smiling, in his safari suit with his customary briefcase. Or the times when Dada and I would wait for everyone to sleep in the house. Then, like two burglars who are up to no good, we would enter the TV room, where Dada would put on a football or a cricket match and I would keep a watch. And he would painstakingly explain a penalty shootout and I would listen on with awe. It was simple being happy. They say you lose simplicity when you grow up. Ironical, really.

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