Letter to a 5-year-old

Dear Abhishek.

This letter continues my series of annual letters to you.

I am writing this part a few weeks before actual birthday. I thought it would be a good idea to describe a typical recent Sunday in your life. Sunday is pretty much the only day I really get with you. On most other days, we only get our 45-odd minutes in the morning before you need to go to school. By the time I get back, it is time for you to sleep. So, Sundays are the days which I look forward to – and I think you do too.

Today, you got up at 5:30 am. It didn’t really matter to you that today was a Sunday. I had gone for my morning walk, and got back just before 6 am. You are chatting with your Dadaji (my father). We had discussed our Sunday morning play last night – you wanted to go for a train ride to Borivali (from Grant Road) – it would have taken an hour or so each way. Your mom promptly vetoed the idea. So, you settled for a shorter ride – like we have been doing for many Sundays.

This time, we took a bus (No. 121) from Kemp’s Corner to Churchgate. You bring a smile to both the conductor and the driver by telling them Goodbye when we leave. At Churchgate station, we took a train (“straight”, 12-compartment, fast – as you had specified) to Mumbai Central station. It was a short ride – all of 8 minutes. You loved it – as you looked outside the window and counted compartments of the passing trains, checking out the tracks switching, and watching the platforms whiz by.

At Mumbai Central, we waited for about half hour or so – as we normally do. You love watching the local trains go by on all the platforms. Today, there was an added advantage of seeing the long-distance ones also. A stranger walked up and had a chat with you – and you gladly talked!

Finally, we made our way out – after you had watched 20-odd trains come and go. You also mimicked the announcements made on the platforms. As I smsed a friend where I was, he replied that you’ll become an engineer like me one day, given your love for trains. I replied, “More like a train driver. Or a platform announcer.”

Continued tomorrow.

3 thoughts on “Letter to a 5-year-old

  1. As always 90% of the male kids wants to be a driver of a fast moving vehicle… it is only the parents who teach them….Betta you should say
    “I want to be an Engineer or Doctor or Scientist” …

    My son at 3 said he wants to be bulldozer driver so that he can smash everything on the way… then he saw Shatabti train one day which went passed very close to the roadway between Mysore-Bangalore (we were in my old-maruti car) and immediately switched to Train Driver.

  2. Its always a warm feeling to read these letters Rajesh.

    I got married recently & believe that only a child can bring some required changes in professionals, esp too much career-oriented ones.

    But at the same time, I also see many people around me who over-protect & spoon-feed their kids that the kids to an extent that kinds become over-dependent on their parents. These kids end up becoming extremely conservative set of individuals & aren’t the ones who explore life, its adventures to realize their personal & professional potential. They merely live life in a way that many times one can’t make out if there is at all any generational gap between parents & kids themselves.

    Its of utmost importance that today’s parents appreciate that world is changing faster & their kids need to be much more dynamic individuals (in a positive way) than what their generation was demanded of.


  3. I don’t know how dry my words would be, if I said “Thank you”………I have really learnt something about ‘parenting’ today…..