Thursday, October 1, 2009

Sisterhood of strawberries and chocolate

I resemble a sleep deprived zombie. Okay! That doesn’t make sense because zombies are dead so they don’t need to sleep… Simply show’s how much sleep deficiency I suffer from….I can’t expect anything better from any other human being woken up at 4:30 in the morning to be told about having a new baby cousin.

Girl or boy? I mumbled, my eyes closed, still heavy with sleep.`

“Baby girl” came the reply. “ Hooray!” I muttered with enthusiasm that was supposed to resemble India winning the cricket world cup but it sounded like I was snorting in my sleep…..I sank back into the world of slumber.

That night I met my new baby cousin for the first time and fell in love with her…. I am forever falling in love with babies… nothing new or novel about the same. And when they all cross the age of 3 they turn out to be brats and break my heart….. I am like women in an abusive relationship. I still can’t let go of my sweethearts….

She was tiny, wrapped tight with a cute bonnet on her tiny little head, not serving its purpose at all since I could see her thatch of dark black hair peep out as if playing peek a boo. Eyes scrunched shut, unaware of the racket spewing around her she lay motionless and serene looking like an award winning photograph.
 I was lost in thought wondering in bewilderment about her smallness. I actually guffawed loudly when an uncle of mine held her with as much trepidation and care as Horton{!%7Dwhen he held the speck . Him a 6 foot 80 something kilogram giant and her, a 3 kilogram mite. I am sure I chuckled loudly because I was rewarded with weird looks from my relatives who were until then busy clucking around the baby like nutty mother hens….. I felt like a dartboard…

She was so small. I wish small had a synonym that clubbed petite and cute and cuddly in it… I need such an adjective to justly describe her. I was petrified to hold her when I was asked if I’d like to by my aunt. And I didn’t in fact for the fear of breaking her or dropping her prevailed over my maternal instincts.
But imagining the so called tiny baby in the now deflated stomach of my aunt made my petite doll remind me of an Alsatian in a terrier’s kennel.

I am the older sister to 7 children including this fledgling, 6 of who are cousins. I’ve been privileged enough to see them all as soon as they were born, but I’ve never ceased to be amazed by how an actual live person can be so small, so petite, so perfect, so tiny, so dark……

Dark?????? My blissful line of thought was broken by the superfluous ravings of my family around me.

“Yes, she’s dark!” piped in a grandaunt

“Yeah, like her dad” chipped in another

“Some kids gain colour after a few days.. yeah she’ll turn out pretty and fair as she grows up.”

“ Oh! Yes! They grow to resemble the other parent, so maybe her mom’s traits will surface in time to come.” Grunted a granduncle with the air of a genetics expert.

The new mother looked apologetically at these people as if the baby and she had committed some crime. They made my doll sound like a blurred photograph.

My mind reeled into flashback

13 years back

“Mommy, why am I not as fair as you?” Does that mean I am not pretty? Does that mean I’m not yours?”
That was a five year old child’s predicament to a mother who didn’t know how to let her baby know that she was beautiful and meant the world.

5 years from then

“What is blushing? I read it in this book”

“That is when some one feels shy and the blood rushes to their cheeks making it go pink or red”
“Do I blush?”
“ No! honey with your skin tone it’s not possible or maybe its not visible. You can observe your brother if you want to. He is fair.”

2 years from then

“You, young woman are so different from everyone in the family… Your head’s always buried in a book or you’re in your own world… Apt to be called the black sheep, you are! {laughing in the background}

Back to the present 2009

Dear baby,

You don’t even have a name yet but they have already tagged you with a label.

I can’t say this out loud to you because, well you can’t understand{ the same stands for the rubbish these people are blathering and thank god for that}. But I hope that these thoughts flow from my heart to yours.

You’re not fair like mommy because you look like daddy and he loves you a lot. He’s darn good looking too, that’s why mom fell for him.

You’re every bit your mom’s. Basic genetics states you receive one of your parents’ skin tones. Daddy rules in that department.

You’re the prettiest thing I’ve set my eyes on in the last 18 years.

You’re gorgeous as hell, heaven too. Boys will queue for you…. It’s only obvious since Naomi Campbell, Bipasha Basu{a famous dusky indian supermodel and actress} Rihanna and Beyonce are so much in demand.

Of course you blush! Just like any other human. And when you do you are like creamy coffee with saffron sprinkled over it.

Anyone wanting to apply a fairness cream on you later in life can go take a hike. We are not interested in contributing to the ever increasing sales of fairness cosmetics industry in the nation of India.

Majority of the CEO’S, Oscar winning actors, statesmen, and writers have been the odd ones out in their families…. The black sheep… hahahahaha

Americans and Europeans run the risk of sunburns to achieve your skin tone. Young girls who resemble milk chocolate bronze themselves because bronze is sexy! You’re less prone to sunburns and skin cancer. Last time I read the traditional religious stories{and I believe I am well versed in them] lord Krishna was dark and he had around 16,000 wives and still waiting I think. Draupadi
{ }
was queen to five handsome kings!!!! She was dusky too…….

You’re siblings if and when they come might be fair…… So what?????? They might be pretty and so are you… They are the light, fresh, sunny, golden mornings people find adorable. You’re the moist, misty, mysterious, glorious star strewn night that people find gorgeous and alluring. I never heard people say only mornings are beautiful and nights are not. You might not be peaches and cream…. But you are strawberries and chocolate………

We Indians bicker about racism in the west. Maybe we should check out the situation in and around our vicinity first.

Lastly, I love you. We are sisters in more ways than you’ll ever know.

Yours sweet as dark chocolate


  1. well they say black tulip rare and beautiful...and i am really forced to believe in the same after reading your memoir ... a fairly good expression .. i enjoyed reding it and am inspired to pen down my thoughts..

  2. Anonymous:- A black tulip! Now that is beautiful..... Ecstatic that my writing inspires you!

  3. Good art is not what it looks like, but what it does to us. so enjoy the gods creation.

  4. you already noe what i feel about this; ) neway i think this IS you're BEST work yet!!!! amazing!!!! cudnt take my eyes off the comp screen....really!!!! everything is true...whatever you wrote...the good parts i mean...bahahahha!!!

  5. jonas sisters:- I always enjoy god's creation. I always keep a mirror with me... Or i always end up being near one.... I'm narcisstic... Actually I'm not AT ALL!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

    bev:- When i posted this I never thought anyone could actually relate to it because its the most personal of all the things I have written till now! I am so happy to know you enjoyed it!!!! Thank you for your support! It keeps me going!!!

  6. hey its a masterpiece. i think you should send it to some newspaper because this what 75% indian girls are facing. yeah i too belong to sisterhood of strawberries and chocolate!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. You leave me speechless with your thoughts especially when it is put into paper; it is so unpretentious and it hits the right chords!!! Hats off to you, Falak!!! Way to go baby.
    To all hypocrites and racists of this world, beware of the falaks’ of today!!! ;-))

  8. Hey Falak.. this is really awesome n soooo true... especially in India.. some people just can't realize the blessings they have right in front of them..... but I'm sure with a sister like u the baby is definitely not gonna have any IC :)

  9. mac satos:- A newspaper!!! Oh My God!!! Now that is a compliment.. But I don't think they would be interested{hahahah}... Thank you for the encouragement.. You are most welcome to join:)

    LR:- Hi there!!! I am not a rebel or crusade {though when the need occurs i can be hahaha} .... I just want people to feel good about themselves and stop pestering others with their concept of what is beautiful or wot is not......... Thank you for all those kind words!

    yohanna.f:- Yes... some people are as blind as bats... The baby will surely do fine and I'll see to it she doesnt suffer from any inferiority complex!!! How wish i could do that for many more girls out there:)

  10. Hi Falak. I fall in love with all babies too. The trick is to love them unconditionally even when they turn into teenagers.

  11. Mary Witzl:-Hi Mary!!! Thank you for taking time to visit my blog. Babies are so irresistible you can't help but fall in love with them. I get what you mean about loving teenagers unconditionally Looking forward to more of your feedback...

  12. i so connect with this...well written babe...

  13. yeah very true it does happen in evry1's lyf.
    i'm sure all can relate to it.
    keep it goin.
    waitin 2 read more.

  14. Shruti:- Thanks!

    Sparsh:- Well ... If not a dusky child in a house full of fair people then there is always a brunette in a family of blondes or a green eyed child in a family of blue eyed people!

  15. hey falak!!!!!! u r AWESUM.....NO WAIT....AWSUMER....NAHHHH......AWSUMEST!!!!!!!.....i was cryin aftr i read dis!!!!!!....i luvd it sooooooooo....much!!!!!!!......dis is by far d best u've eva written!!!!!! really touchd d deepest chord in my heart!!!!!!!........i luvd it.....o my i luv it......m sooooo proud of u!!!!.....luv ya....jovi

  16. Jovi:- Don't shower me so with praises! The water cut at my place is done with. Jokes apart thanks a million for visiting my blog... You cried?????Well, now that makes me laugh.. Kidding again. Thanks a lot for your support. Hope you come back:)

  17. Hey girl!! u're realllly good! A very beautiful piece...and I loved the title especially..

  18. Kalyani:- :)Thanks for visiting!

  19. I like the way you write..and even better are your thoughts.. i'd suggest you pen down "memoirs of a teenager" .. u'll surely find a publisher..

  20. Anonymous:- Firstly, Thanks a lot for visiting my blog! Publishing.......ahhhhhh..... Well, writers who are way experienced and a hell lot better than I am at this have and are still waging a battle to get stuff published...... You can ask Mary Witzl { I follow her blog and it is great i must tell you}
    Wonder who will take poor'young' me seriously.... hahahha.....Thanks anyways!!:)

  21. The best eyes were moist when i finished reading it..your ability to express in words is marvellius...have u tried publishing this?? It deserves recognition