When I think about childhood I must admit they were the best years of my life. I grew up in a large family, Mom was a fabulous cook,Dad was busy with his work. He had a very important 8 to 6 job.
We were very disciplined, school was from 6 to 4. I went to school on the school bus. I was picked up at 6 in the morning and dropped off at 4 pm. Our teachers were strict there was no room to fool around, tasks had to be completed on time or there was tons of homework, unfinished school work and regular homework.
We had supper as soon as Dad was home. My Dad was a fussy eater, everything Mom cooked had to be perfect or he wouldn’t eat. If any of the ingredients in the food was slightly more he’d call me and tell me to give it my Mom to eat. I was very young ,I never understood the sarcasm, I’d happily take the food to Mom. One such day the meat Mom cooked was not according to my Dad Up to standard.
As usual he instructed me to take it for my Mom , I thought Dad was generous, as soon as I said, “Mom Dad wants you to eat this.”
I felt all hell would break loose, Mom was unimpressed, she yelled something which I did not understand. Once my Mom put too much onion in one of the dishes, Dad called me and said in his sweetest voice, “Ranu ask your Mom if the onion is cheaper these days.”
I knew why he said it, I wasn’t going to ask Mom about the price of onion.
One might wonder why Ranu was doing all this chore, what about the older siblings and the servants. Well none of the siblings or the servants wanted to face Dad when he was in a devilish mood. So Ranu was the one everyone depended on, I wasn’t fond of this duty but like Shakespeare’s character Andrew Aguecheek , it was thrust upon me, I could not complain, I stayed away from Mom’s anger.
As far as music goes we were prohibited from listening to any kind of music, because my Dad thought it would distract us from our studies. He never bought a radio,for this reason.
Once my sister told Dad Ranu can sing quite well, I was summoned by my Dad, when Dad called you had to be there, so I went with a heart beating out of my chest,thinking what was I guilty of.
It turned out he heard I can sing, he was all smiles, “Ranu can you sing a song for me, I will give you money?”
I was very shy singing in front of Dad was unthinkable, besides money was not an attraction, the moment my two older brothers found out I had money, they would make me give it to them. I declined to sing.
I’ve probably presented a very gloomy picture of my childhood, it wasn’t, nothing could match the wonderful time I had in my early childhood.