Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Barbie Tale for Boo

One day, when dinner was done, and there was nothing nice on TV, and Baby Boo's dad was fidgeting with the DVD player for lack of something better to do, Baby Boo tugged at his sleeve and said, "Tell me a story." Now Baby Boo's daddy was a nice guy, and usually was very accomodative in most matters like whether to play or not, whether to watch cartoons or some weird animal-life feature, or whether to wait for sweets till after lunch or go for it straightaway, if there was one thing he really disliked, it was telling stories. But Baby Boo loved stories, and had gradually been able to wean out every single story her dad knew, and all this in the four short years of her life alone. Daddy knew he had a tough life ahead. He was outa stock.

He gently remonstrated with his daughter, "But Boo, I've already told you; I have no more stories left."

"Make one up," mamma said. "You're pretty good at that anyway." And she didn't smile.

"Grummmmunnnnunnnummm broooodummmmmbunnndrleee," Daddy said expansively to the DVD player, and, with tears in his voice, turned once more to Baby Boo. "Wouldn't you like Mamma to read one out to you? She looooves reading stories, especially at nighht, after the day is done."

Baby Boo rounded her eyes, pouted, and shook her head, and her curly locks swung to and fro. Ooon-hoonh. Daddy half smiled, half shrugged, picked up his daughter gently in his arms, and stalked off to the bed. "Don't blame me if it sucks," he said.

I still don't know why, but Baby Boo looked back at Mamma clearing the mess Daddy made before the DVD player and giggled.

And Daddy lay Baby Boo's head on the pillow, brushed her curls from her face, smoothened her curls, and told her this story.

"Once upon a time, there was a Barbie princess, and she lived in a beautiful castle filled with beautiful people and beautiful things. She was the only daughter of a very loving father, who was, evidently, the king of the land, and he loved her with all his heart. She had everything that a little girl could wish for, and she was the happiest child in the land.

"She was also amzingly lovely. Every day, when she would get up, the entire castle would come alive, smiling and bright and happy, because the castle, and everything and everyone in it, loved the barbie princess more than life itself. More than sheer beauty, however, it was her soul that won everyone's heart. She was kind to everyone, and smiled happily at all who came before her. She also had a very giving nature. She would share everything with anyone who wanted any of it. No wonder she never lacked friends. The Barbie princess grew up quickly, and with every passing day, she grew lovelier and gentler, and soon the day came when the king had to think about getting her married.

"Quite understandably, he hated the idea. The barbie princess might have been an icon of perfection to the entire world, to him, she was his Baby Boo -- Like you are my Baby Boo," Daddy said gently. Baby Boo smiled, and the dimples in her cheek made Daddy's heart hurt with warmth.

"So, he thought and thought, and after he had sat on the idea for a good month, he announced that Baby Boo would be married to a king or prince, and that too, of her choosing. "Let there be a swayamvara," he announced loudly."

Baby Boo perked right up and asked, "What's a swayamvara, daddy?"

"That's where a lady gets to be held responsible for her life's biggest mistake for the rest of her existence," said Mamma in a calm voice from the hall. baby Boo had no idea what that meant, but she knew it was meant for Daddy. She giggled and, looking expectantly at Daddy, waited for an explanation.

Daddy snickered briefly. "The swayamvara was held in a huge hall, and all the young kings and princes who wanted to marry the Barbie princess assembled there. The princess was to choose one of them, and they were all excited and nervous. Each one sized the other up, and prepared himself to make a good impression on the princess, because they all knew she was very beautiful and very good.

"At last, Princess Barbie came into the room, and she looked lovelier than ever before." "What was she wearing?" asked Baby Boo, who always was for attention to detail.

"Umm ... she wore a ... let's see ... she wore a nice, long red ghaagra, and a lovely red embroidered blouse, and a beautiful dupatta made of the finest silk in the world." "Shoes?" asked Baby Boo. "Sure," said the sage. "Velvet shoes with nice little heels." Baby Boo giggled happily; her picture was complete in her mind. Daddy's eye twinkled naughtily.

"And then suddenly, from out of nowhere, came a huge monster! He had huge red eyes and a forest of stubble, and his face was pock-marked. He carried a great tree trunk in his huge hand, like a club, and he wore a .... a bedsheet around his waist, and his hairy legs were dirty and caked with mud and he STANK!" Baby Boo stopped smiling and looked up questioningly at Daddy. "Wrong genre, no?" her eyes said.

"Sounds familiar," said a voice from across the hall.

-- To be Continued.


aaaalu said...

Amazing Dear One. I knew that you would tell stories, but this is really amazing. Very absorbing. I can't wait to see Baby Boo....

Shashank Jha said...

this is a poem or an epic!