There are some mechanics whose work I admire. They have an orderliness about them. They take out things packed in 30 mm space, spread it out over 100 sq metres and put them back in 30 mm with minimum fuss and mess. I have always admired such souls of toil. So, when the father and daughter were pandering upstairs with a laptop lying open on the desk, I went up a couple of times partly out of curiosity and partly to keep the toddler son away from the table. (The son thinks he is helping out on the task and gets sorely disappointed when told that he can’t place his toy cars on that convenient hole inside the laptop where the hard disk used to reside. ) Halfway through the task, I saw the pair of them chattering about something and come downstairs. “Commencing after lunch!” said the mechanics. “But you just had coffee and chocolate milk!” said I. This was received with a chuckle and no retort. A moment later, the pair of them switched on the Television.
“Going to watch Television? “ I asked in that tone that mildly encourages one to finish up the laptop work. Among other things I was worried that a small thing will go astray and I will be called upon to get down on all fours and search.
“TV Amma. Not television. Television sounds so formal and then you don’t feel like relaxing with it.”
“Well, what happened to the laptop?” I asked.
“We watched a you-tube video on how to do it Amma. Relax. So, I know everything. We just could not do it because Appa wants to take another backup of the disk now.”
I launched into what I call my Science Teacher mode. “You can learn more by doing than by watching you-tube videos. “ I went on in this vein for a few sentences, and then let the thing rest.
A few days later, I caught her again and told her about the Science experiments that the President lauded, and how these children had taken simple problems and solved them.
It was a lovely afternoon chat, and I asked her what I could do to help her along in her ambition to become a biologist.
“You can buy me a pet!” said she before I had completed my sentence.
“What amma? You just said that I will learn more by doing than by reading books or watching documentaries. So, in order for me to become a biologist, I think a pet would help me nicely. Maybe a dog, or a duck or a parrot.”
“I like snake.” said the toddler son playing with his toy cars.
“Or how about some fish?”
“I want bumblebee Amma” said the son.
I want respite.
Happy Science Days to all of you.