Yesterday, I received a call from my sister with a curious question. In her usual abrupt manner where customary greeting have no room, she fired:
Hey, what the heck did you do as a kid to pass time?
Her oldest son Eshaan who is now nine has been battling boredom lately despite of all the DVDs, Video Games, 24-hr cartoon channels, etc.. Looking for a solution he turned to his mom for what she did as a kid. My sister was a social butterfly who loved to sleep. So when she wasn’t hanging out with her girl friends, she was on the phone with her girl friends. Or she was sleeping.
Since my sister was not much help, the curious kid naturally inquired about his more prudent aunt, me.
Being half a decade older my sister barely kept up with my childish musings. Heck, the question caught me off guard too.It’s been so long since I have thought about these things, but for the sake of my nephew, I sat down with pen and paper and made a list.
·Read mystery books by Enid Blyton.
·Played with coloring books and puzzle books.
·Pretended to have a live cooking show in the kitchen using my mom’s utensils. I clearly remember wearing an apron and talking out loud to my imaginary audience.
·Tried to invent a new language. I literally made up alphabets, numbers and words, and wrote them in a diary weekly. I wish I had kept a copy.
·Drew Disney characters; goofy being my favorite.
·Read Hindi comic books.
·Played office with my Dad’s stationary and papers.
·Played teacher often gathering younger kids from the neighboorhood to play students.
·Played monopoly with my neighbor (for hours on end).
· Helped the maid. I loved to clean and organize even as a kid.
·Got into my sister’s things when she was away. Her room was always such a treasure hunt. And she had so many cool things like CDs and make up.
·Rode my bike with friends.
·Kept a scrap book of cut-outs of pretty pictures and funny cartoons from all of my Dad’s magazines. If he didn’t get to them before I did, they were sure to have holes in them.
·Made grandma tell me stories from her religious books
·Played outside with friends when the day cooled.
And now for some baby pictures to go with the story.
From left: sister Deepal, cousin Veeral, me
From left: cousin Janu and me.
Wwhat are some of the things you remember? Do you have any suggestions for my nephew?
Chika Gujarathi is a freelance writer, author of the "Hello Namaste!" Bilingual board book series for children, and a self professed "Creative Doer". Her work has appeared in national and local publications on topics including lifestyle, travel, books, art, and motherhood! She lives in Raleigh, NC with her husband and four children.
View all posts by Chika Gujarathi