Watching TV with a new friend


It is late in the evening. And small silver stars are glittering far away on a deep purple sky. The moon is a thin sliver behind translucent clouds that are floating gently across the sky to places unknown.

Our balcony window is wide open. A cool breeze blows into our living room, where all of us are seated or sprawled, watching a show on Netflix. There are two main characters in the show, and two factions have developed. My daughter is on one side, while my husband and I are on the other. We keep teasing our daughter, and she rolls her eyes in exasperation.

And…then, all of a sudden, my daughter points at the balcony floor. A lizard is on the ledge between the balcony floor and the living room. It seems to be watching the show too!

Photo by NSU MON from Pexels

I think out aloud, “Maybe the lizard has had a long day like me, and is taking a breather by watching TV”.

I ask my husband what he thinks. And pat comes the reply…”Nothing, it is just a lizard”, and he goes back to watching the show.” Men!!!!

My daughter chips in, “Hey lizard, please get your own subscription… it is better not to watch TV with these two people”, and points us out to the lizard.

All of us burst out laughing. Each of us reacted to the lizard in our own way, by projecting our emotions on the lizard. And that’s how we see the world most times, as a reflection of our own state of mind.

As I walk around the house, checking doors and turning off the lights, I wish the lizard a good night.

Neighbours


Today, we have more smartphones and tablets than the number of members in a family. We sit on our couches or slouch on our beds, busy connecting with people from around the world.

But the world was not like this at all, when I was growing up. All social networking was done face to face.

We had neighbours. We grew up with them, till we went to college, got jobs, married and moved out.

We played for hours on the street, till the street lights came on. We played riotous games, and sometimes spent entire evenings looking for a missing tennis ball.

We formed numerous clubs, drawing inspiration from Enid Blyton books, and many other childrens’ movies. We put up stalls, and all kinds of shows for our parents.

We attended exhibitions of butterflies and other insects put up by the neighbourhood boys. We went into the neighbouring woods to collect eucalyptus leaves, which we used to light bonfires.

We spent all our time in and out of each others’ homes, bringing plates filled with lunch, and eating together in a friend’s garden.

We had fights, silly squabbles and long battles that sometimes lasted an entire season.

We eagerly opened boxes of yummy snacks that neighbours sent to us. We went in droves to the home where the first television made its appearance.

Image courtesy – http://www.fotosearch.com

We watched the glorious Indian Monsoon with our noses plastered to the windows – howling winds, lashing rain and falling trees.

We watched the first frost of winter, and gobbled up piping hot venn pongal that was served in the neighbourhood temple.

We knew a lot about each other and our families. We lived at a time when we got ‘live updates’ about each others’ lives.

We had lovely neighbours.