Yesterday was a beautiful day. I went to the Star Mark bookshop to buy a gift for a friend of mine. I bought Neil Gaiman’s Norse Mythology and after paying for it, I stood in a mini queue to get the book gift-wrapped. The guy standing before me was often turning around to keep an eye on his little girl who was about five or six years old. The queue moved a little and I moved forward and stood in that guy’s position. That little girl came back to me and tugged at my left hand and said, “Daaaddy, I want that booook.” I was pleasantly surprised at this sudden promotion, and patted that little girl’s head. She still didn’t look up to see that I wasn’t her dad. The guy before me turned around and gave me and his daughter a stern look.
“Maya, that is NOT your dad!” The guy huffed. “Your dad is here.”
The little girl looked up at me to see me smiling down at her and she quickly left my hand and ran to her daddy. I laughed out loud and startled a girl nearby who gave me a quizzical look.
The little girl’s name was Maya. It was kind of strange to know that Maya was pulling at me to carry out her wishes. We all are pulled by her in various directions in this life of ours, and only a couple of days back, I was telling a very close friend of mine that Life is Maya! I couldn’t help but notice this little coincidence. When was the last time I said that to anyone? I can’t remember. I don’t think I said that to anyone as far as I can remember.
Anyway, I don’t mind bending to Maya’s wishes if she is that little girl asking for a book. How can anyone say no to that?
I noticed that the father was actually buying a children’s book and I was curious to know if his daughter could read that.
“She reads those books?” I asked him.
“She doesn’t yet. I read those books to her,” he said with a smile.
“You should read out Enid Blyton books to her,” I suggested.
“Yeah, I am thinking of buying her these 5 O’ Clock tales sometime next year.”
“Yes that would be a good choice for her age. I don’t think she is ready for Famous Five yet,” I said.
“Yeah, Famous Five, Five Find-Outers, St.Clares’ — good memories those were,” the father started recollecting. “Cherry Tree farm, Willow tree series….”
“Green meadow family,” I added a book to his recollection.
“Yeah, Green meadow family,” he smiled at me. “It was nice bumping into you.”
“I am glad that we met too,” I said, grinning ear to ear to find a fellow Blyton fan.