Last night at bedtime, Akank had this lost look about her and was fidgeting with her comforter ( yeah, she keeps a soft cloth which is usually a well worn cotton saree and she has to have it at bed time! I know she is not going to like me talking about it on her blog) Just as I was settling down to sleep she asked me if she could ask me a “teenage question”. Even though I was startled a bit, I did not show it. In a very casual voice I said ” sure thing , shoot ‘. Then she giggled and tittered and bit her comforter and went red on her face.
I waited patiently for her to ask me ” the ” question.
Then she said ” Do you think I could ask Sean to come home on Saturday to borrow a book?” (Names changed to protect privacy ) You could almost hear me sigh in relief! “Of course you can. What is the big deal”
” No… its just that he is a boy!”
” Whoa. Don’t you have friends who are boys? What are Sanjay, Abhijit , Anirudh and … ( I could have gone on and on)
” Ma! They are my buddies! Sean is … is… an … acquaintance!” ” ( I am thinking – Isn’t that supposed to be easier then?)
What is the big deal about talking to another (dumb) ten year old, Akank!
After I assured her that it was really okay to call someone home to borrow a book, she wanted to do a “dry run” of the situation with me. We took turns being Sean and Akank and drilled a bit with questions and answers about borrowing books. At the end of it, I advised her that if she was not comfortable calling him home, maybe she should not. But she wouldn’t hear of it. She insisted that she will invite the child. Only that, she warned me, ” I will disappear someplace if I get embarrassed with his answer ” I had already started to dread this kid:-)
In the morning, I was busy fixing her breakfast and making her school lunch when Akank came by to the kitchen with a serious “Hi Sean” and a raised eyebrow . That was a cue for me to slip into the role of the ” boy- who- will- come- home- to- borrow- a- book”.
I think we got it right. Only Akank can tell how it went:-)