Island Life




A life a child would never give up unless forced away from those who shower the love and support needed to survive and a willingness and desire to continue one’s life.  The experiences gained as a child would definitely serve and impact the adult life especially the gaps and holes caused by having to leave the life you are used to. Grandma packs your lunch, two cheese sandwiches and gives money to buy snacks from a tuck shop at school. Uniform is ready and lies on the bed as soon as the child is ready to get dressed.  A loving grandma who fulfills her role as well as the role of a mother since the mother was never around to care for the child and in fact neglected the daughter either because she was not her own or wished her own blood line to succeed.

As soon as the van arrived and the the honking could be heard for miles the child would collect her bag and lunch and rush to find a seat.  Her eyes would search for her friends who are the main reason for going to school and made learning an enjoyable experience.  As soon as interval approaches the girls would start their usual games or sports that involve running around the track with a baton.

The classes are usually subdued and the teacher does all the talking in a lecture format and the students would take notes to prepare for the exam which includes material studied for about three months or more. Since there were other children in the neighborhood who come out to play in the evening the day is not completely boring. Every day the girls would play tag, dodge ball or French cricket.  Grandma takes the child twice a week for Elecution, dance and the music master comes for home visits and trains the child while the father listens to his daughter singing even if his mind appears to be elsewhere.

On Sundays, the child goes to Balvikas where the teacher relays stories about Mahabharata, Ramayan, practice for upcoming competitions, singling etc. Unfortunately, no one asked the child how school was, what are you learning or do you need help. The child completed her homework on her own and prepared for exams independently. Why is that? The grandma was stressed playing the role of the mother and the grandmother; the father was ill and recovering; the mother was career focused and planning her get away from the Island LIfe since her husband was ill and not the man she married.

The father would give some money to the child every time he gets a pay check which is something to look forward to since the child loves to read and takes her bike and cycles to the top of the lane to the only bookstore there to buy Enid Blyton Fairy Tales to fantasize how her life could be and the rest is spent on chocolates.

At night, the room was completely dark except for the night light which her father had restored since the child was afraid of the dark and sees a giant like figure looking down at her from the house next door. However, in the daylight this figure is not clearly evident until the child became older and then started to see more of this figure from her room. No one thought of putting drapes and the child had to change her clothes without privacy.

Also, there were live ins who assisted the grandma  with cooking and house work since the mother would come home late after work and then chats with her relatives or goes out with them.  Live ins might teach the child bad habits especially if the father is sick, grand is stressed and the mother is nowhere to be found. Thus, Island LIfe with live ins is not suitable for a child who might have internal scars that are  not shared in the public eye due to embarrassment.

However,  having a mother who does not like you because you are not her own along with a grandma who is stressed and a dad who is ill is like having a life that is hanging on a thread, expect the worst to happen, zero happiness, turmoils, pangs of pain and suffering and put downs and more put downs.

To be continued

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I like using fictitious characters to elaborate on factual events portrayed in our community for public awareness. Small articles for entertainment purposes are my cup of tea as well. My hobbies include outdoor activities such as hiking, camping and so forth. If I get the opportunity, I seek adventures and explore new places related to art, culture, museums, gardens, caves etc. Observing people, travelling, exploring instill the thirst to pen my thoughts down in a meaningful and authentic manner.

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