"Please send 4 onions, 2 karelas and a brinjal with your child next Monday."
The note. The dreaded diary note from school.
You have just come home from office, and are chatting with your better half and the little one. Somewhere in the conversation, the kid casually says "Oh BTW, there is a note in my diary. Teacher has asked parents to read it."
The conversation stops. My better half and I look at each other, trying to keep a poker face. But internally there is churning. As Spider Man would say, "My spider sense is tingling!"
With trembling hands, we open the school diary. Pinned with a stapler pin is an innocuous looking small white piece of paper. On it are typed the latest instructions to parents - kind of like the mafia boss instructing his minions to do his bidding. Disobedience is not an option. Consequences will be severe.
This note has a sequence of instructions, akin to a complex puzzle.
"Next Thursday there will be a monthly competition."
(Me): Ok, no probs.
"Your child has to make a pen stand."
(Me): So far, so good.
"The materials have to be found at home."
(Me): Oh oh.
"The density of the materials sent must be between 0.69 to 2.7 grams per cubic centimeter."
"Sketch pens allowed but minimal usage recommended. Glitter can be used maximum of 5 dots per square cm. Natural colors preferred."
(Me): I should send turmeric and red chilli powder. Maybe dhaniya powder and garam masala. Ekdum natural.
And so on.
Sometimes you have to make charts (healthy food VS junk food).
Sometimes you are made to rummage around the streets like a crazy person (find stones that are rhombus shaped).
Sometimes you visit 20 costume rental shops (Armadillo costume kidhar milta hai bhai?)
You gather all the required materials, and send it with your sweetie.
At the end of the day you ask, "So what did you make with it?"
Sweetie: "Oh, Fantasia Luktuke from my class got a lot of material from her parents, so we used that only. I kept mine aside."
We finished our education without our parents having to even bother what went on in our class. Here I am getting a second, forced childhood. I am learning things I don't want to learn. Any of the parents can pass the school exam tomorrow, because we know their syllabus by heart.
What cannot be cured, must be endured.
The weekend approaches. Bliss will be mine!!
Sweetie: "Oh Daddy, another diary note!"
(Me): Spider sense ....
Note: "Please grow fungus on bread, paper, grass and cow dung. Each must be watered and studied every 2 hours. All materials must be sent on Monday."
(Me): Sweetie, how much fungus can Fantasia Luktuke's parents grow?