Friday, March 22, 2013

To Granny, With Love! ~ Dove


After a long tiring hot day in the campus, I hurried into an auto agreeing to pay the driver twenty rupees more than the fare. What! It was a hot evening in Delhi and I hadn’t got an auto for about an hour. Today I had a BIG reason to return back home soon. Dadijee had come home this morning from Kolkata. I wait for this time all year, when she comes to Delhi and spends a few days with us. She pampers me with Bengali food, sweets and loads and loads of love.




Of all the things I missed, I miss her head massages. So the moment I reached home, I quickly freshened up and made some tea while she was enjoying her evening siesta. I woke her up and hugged her tightly. We spoke of endlessly for hours, and by the end of it I pressed my head, it had been a very tiring day. Plus, it was a sign for her to do the needful
Yes! I am a naughty kid!
But I have more feathers in my hat, you see!

She raised her eyebrow and asked me to sit in front of her. I did what was told to me, like an obedient kid. She started pressing her fingers on my head, and started off “ You girls nowadays don’t understand how to maintain yourselves. Aamader somoy( During our times), we paid much attention to all this. You may be modern and you all roam through the dirt of this city. Ah! Those lovely tresses and how we took so much care! But you, you brats think you know everything kintu (but)even we are literate and modern, kicchu bujhli (do you understand)? She started moving her fingers into my hair and stopped speaking. She kept meandering her fingers and exclaimed- Baah! Ki norom chool Mamoni! (Wow! What soft hair, Mamoni!)
I smiled and showed her the Dove Hair-split test. I took my hair ends into a bunch and brushed them onto her soft cheeks. I adore her skin! She has such glowing skin and she never tells me her secret. Anyway, I asked her if the ends felt rough on her skin. She nodded in denial. In fact, she let out a laugh and exclaimed, “Aaahhaa! Shushshuri Laage( it tickles)!

They say films are inspired from real-life stories. But then there are these little moments, that fill up your heart with so much happiness that you wonder if this is for real or are you fantasizing about a story you’ve seen in the idiot box!  Dadijee nudged me again and I heard a ‘dhoom tananana..dhooomm tananananaa…. ‘ tune and I could not believe this was happening for real!




She nudged me again, placing her palms on the either sides of my head and pressing it a little harder. She said, “Bol na, ki kore raakhish chul guli eto shundor, ki secret aamye o bol?” (Tell me how you manage to keep your hair so healthy?) I smiled, her innocence at this age, was a beautiful expression to witness. I told her that I’d tell her the secret only after she’d start braiding my hair, just the way she does for Mum. She smiled back and divided my hair into three equal parts with two easy strokes of my hair-brush. Then she got carried off in the process of making a braid- separating every division and turning them one over the other into serpentine curves, thus forming a rope-like series and she tied a rubber-band at the end of it, tightly. I loved it. No, not just having grandma tie my hair every night, but also to see my sister, Pari look at me enviously… she has a mushroom cut, you see!




Dadijee, like an excited little kid asked me to reveal the secret. I ran to my room and showed her my secret. A milk-white colored purse, zipped shut. I told her to open the purse afterwards. Soon, it was time to sleep and we went to our respective rooms- all lights were switched off; except hers. She opened the purse to find a bottle of Dove Shampoo and a conditioner with a little colorful piece of paper. She plucked it out of the purse and read what was scribbled into it-




Dove is what my Dadijee had used for my hair and body ever since I was a little baby. Twenty years and several inches later, I don’t think much has changed. The 1/4th moisturizing milk in the shampoo is a blessing, considering I live in a city like Delhi-polluted, populated and tiring. With so much stress in my head, Dove saves my hair like a protective wear. I wish someday soon, the researchers produce something for what lies inside the head too.



Anyway, the next morning   Dadijee woke me up and I lazily brushed my teeth and hung my head on the dining table, rest of the body swaying along its weight. She had a tin pack in her hands and a big smile on her face. “Here”, she said “this is the secret of my glowing skin.” I jumped out of my chair and took the tin pack from her. Nothing was written on the green-colored tin box. I gave her a puzzled look and she told me to open the box. “Maida and Oil!!”, I shrieked. “Yes, every day before going to bathe, apply the paste all over your body and rinse till dry. What comes off, are the dead cells, and body hair. Keeps the skin hydrated and leaves a glow. Now hurry, go apply it and off to bathe! You’ll be late for your college  Shonamuni! She grins like a naughty kid and goes inside the temple and coyly sings, “Shona Gopal, Chaa Khaao! Chaa Khaao, shona!” (She began calling out Lord Gopal's name, pampering him and cajoling him, asking him to drink tea!). I with a grimacing face, walk into the bathroom.

















This was my "Beautiful Ends to your Braids" Story! What's Yours? 



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