A couple of years back, I had looked forward, in great anticipation, to when I turned sixty, which day was peeping at me then, from just around the next corner. I had been dining off this feather in my matronly cap, for a few years. Those of you, who are still green, and in their youthful forties & fifties yet, do not appreciate this sense of complete and total, uninhibited freedom that SIXTY under the belt gives! My grey hair and general appearance permits me the licence (among more gainful pursuits), to give the appreciative , unabashed, motherly ‘once over’ to a passing swashbuckling local hero, while lesser mortals like the swooning PYTs have to dart furtive glances, under dancing eyelids, at said Lothario. I can even give this hero a familiar grandmotherly pat on his back, without anybody turning a hair. Can any of my forty-ish, fifty-ish friends do this? Nah!
Of course, I am a grandmother, and have been one for close to a decade. My daughter completed my happiness by presenting me with first one, and then a second grand daughter. But as any self respecting woman of Indian origin will know, you can only earn those final brownie points when your son, if you are fortunate enough to have borne a child of the masculine gender, presents you with a grandson. My son thereafter obliged, with a bit of help from my daughter-in-law! My bosom should have swelled with appropriate gratification at being thus elevated in status. I have a confession to make—I am extremely partial to little girls, and was greedily hoping for a third grand daughter! Soon after THE EVENT, a well wishing aunt, gushed at me over the telephone line from far away U.S.of A,“ You must be really thrilled with having a grand son to carry on your family name.” Quite a puzzling statement I thought, wondering of what Empire that dear lady thought I was the reigning matriarch. I suddenly realized that there was an expectant hush screaming at me over the ether. I did not have the heart to tell this true blue desi woman that I had actually still been hoping for a third grandchild of the fairer sex. I hurriedly pulled myself together and responded appropriately over the phone line, of how my happiness was now complete. That with one fell swoop, my newly born grandson & heir had ensured that I had the opportunity of mopping up all the spilt liquid from my overflowing cup! Towards this end, and lest my dear son & his wife thought that I was not in transports of joy at their new son, and I was actually, I had set out that fateful day, a few months ago, to spend quality time with the latest addition to my crown jewels.
In hind sight, maybe I should have just stayed home. But this tale, however, has to be a sequel……….