“All of you stand in a line with your kites and I will click a picture of you,” the instructor called out to the children.
Obediently, all the children formed a horizontal line showing off their kites or rather their drawings of kites. All the kites were perfectly held pointing upwards as if ready to soar high to touch the classroom’s ceiling. Only one kite was facing downwards as if it had already kissed the vast skies finally swooping down to the ground but caught midway. The child with the upside down kite was Dhruv.
This was not the only instance where he stood as the odd one out. He has performed a drill for his school’s sports day facing the opposite direction while all others faced the audience. And, there have been many other similar occasions.
In various storytelling sessions that we have been to, in case he did not like the session, he has stood by the window gazing outside at the passing cars, he has distracted the storyteller and one time, to my acute embarrassment, he began doing rounds of yoga asanas right there in the middle of the room while the story was still going on. He is fairly obedient at home and also outside yet when he begins functioning on a different rhythm, he becomes unstoppable.
A similar incidence happened last Saturday when we had gone to a children’s book illustrator’s event. This event was meant for 5-10-year-old children. The illustrator first read her book and afterwards conducted an activity with children which was about making animals pictures using paper cuttings of various shapes. At this point, I stepped out to the adjacent room to check out the books available for sale.
1o minutes later, Dhruv came up to me to show his work. There were no traces of paper cuttings on his sheet. Instead, I saw what seemed to me criss-cross lines which may or may not have begun with the shape’s outline. Since I have a grown-up mind – hardly imaginative or creative, I felt it safe to ask him what is the story of his drawing. So, it was an alien animal from the planet Mercury. It had 2 heads on both the sides. The left one was meant for eating and the right one was meant for doing potty and vomiting. Don’t ask me about the obsession with the potty.
I followed him back into the room where I saw the other children had made such neat pictures of animals with perfect shapes which I am assuming their mothers must have helped or we have some wonderful future illustrators in the making. I wish I had taken pictures of their artworks.
And then I glanced at Dhruv’s sheet. He was giving final touches by pasting small bits of paper one over another in one blank part on his sheet. After all, he was meant to stick paper cuttings, so be it.
On satisfactorily finishing off his work, he held it up to show me the epitaph for the Alien Animal – April 7, 2009 to March 28, 2018.
Let us all pray for Dhruv’s Alien Animal who has only 6 more months to live.
And, did I tell you its name? The name actually came 2 days later while the story kept evolving. Its name is Tigros.
Linking this post with #MondayMusings hosted by Corinne Rodrigues
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