A woman with the potential to make it big. It is not that she cannot: she simply will not.
The closest anyone has come to being an adopted daughter.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Some girl!

Bidyunmala Mukherjee, popularly referred to as Rubu by most people, has turned out to be pretty eventful over the last fortnight. Here's why:


She needs to hold on to a blanket during those last few moments before she dozes off. I've seen many children use props of various kinds, but she's the only one I know who has actually named them. There is an assortment of blankets used in an unequally distributed rotation policy, the duration depending on their relationship with the washing machine. All of them are called Rahul and are generally distinguished by racist adjectives (Peach Rahul, Yellow Rahul and so on).

The biggest and oldest of them, though, has not been christened Pink Rahul. It's affectionately referred to as King Rahul, and is the most favourite. It's also the default Rahul (when the word Rahul is mentioned, we always know that it's King Rahul, not the subjects).

After seven years of dedicated service, a hole has popped up in the withered surface of one of Rahul's corners. The blanket is now referred to as RaHole.


Cautious father: Pandu had two wives, Kunti and Madri. Kunti had three sons, Madri had two. Their names were Yudhishthir, Bheem, Arjun, Nakul and Sahadev. Kunti... well... had another son before her marriage. He was called Karna (the Bengali father, of course, pronounced Korno).
Ever-vigilant daughter: Corn? He was called Corn?
Father: No. Korno.
Father: (Letting the question go outside the offstump) And Dhritarashtra and Gandhari had hundred.
Daughter: No, you said she had a son before marriage.
Hapless Father: (in a small voice) Yes.
Daughter: (in a seriously demanding tone) HOW?
Helpless Father: They knew magic in those days. Lots of magic. (Voice raised by about 50 decibels) Now, about Dhritarashtra and Gandhari...



Her second cousin (the one with whom she shares a pair of maternal great-grandparents), aged three, slept over pretty recently. He wasn't doing well, and I stayed awake till early morning. Exhausted, I told my daughter to tell her cousin a story and put him to sleep (well, I have done it to her for about a thousand and one nights, surely she could conjure one of those stories?).

"Rubudidi will tell you a story."

I went to the bathroom and came out about three minutes later. Absolute silence. The boy had almost fallen asleep. I was stunned. It took me at least fifteen minutes to do the same to my daughter (I had crossed the two-hour mark once) being a storyteller.

I got curious. As soon as he fell into deep sleep, I interrogated her: HOW?

"Oh, I didn't tell him a story. I just told him that I've heard today that all babies to fall asleep quickly tonight shall be given a Ben-10 watch."

That one put me to sleep as well.


She loves anagrams. Today I gave her a list of words with animal anagrams. One of them was HIRNO or some other anagram of RHINO.

She usually gets them very fast, especially the small ones. For some reason this was an exception. If she doesn't get them she usually comes up and asks for a hint - something like the starting alphabet or some information about the animal. Today was different.

She tiptoed up to me and hesitated for a while: "Baba, can it be the Bengali name of an animal?"

Huh? "Like what?"

"HORIN." (Bengali for deer)

I shudder at what might happen if I give her the full thing (CHOIR SNORE or something) and she comes up with another one. Talk of your confidence being crushed.


  1. ha ha ha. She is the only 'alpha'-female I know :-) But I can see how your extensive knowledge about the OB-GYN minutiae of the epics will have to go unappreciated for another 7 (say) years !

  2. she has your wifey's gene.

  3. Interesting post. More interesting are the comments.

    Okay, THE comment.

  4. Dear Rubu, Happy Christmas!! Tons of chocolates for you!!
    Smart Parents - Smart Kid!!

  5. ki je boli janina eto bhashaye bolar noy tui hoito bujhbi ei clean and clear relationship ta shottyi upolobdhi korar it really touches the heart so deeply that tears roll down wht more can i say hope i conveyed my message

  6. Tomar meyer naame Bidyunmala! I wish my parents thought like you did :-(

  7. :) Ohh Rubu! u r so intelligent!!

  8. Bidyunmala (mixture of Abhishekda & Boudi), you are so intelligent & cute.
    Lots of good wishes & love for u.

  9. So lovely..

    Best one: "Letting the question go outside the offstump"

  10. Agree with Adrijo!

    Very Well Left!!

  11. Enjoyed this post :) esp the Horin part!

  12. Bidyunmala... ei naamtar janyoi tomar meyer goppo shunechhilam... ebar aro goppo shune dekha korara ichchhe hochchhe!! :-)

  13. She seems to be an absolute darling... :)

  14. The lines reflected a beautiful relation.You are blessed.

  15. What a delightful entry!
    You need to write more about Rubu.
    I take she reads your blog but never comments?

    1. I try to post whenever something interesting turns up. I will write more, I promise.

  16. She has your genes. I love her.

    PS:There names were Yudhishthir, Bheem, Arjun, Nakul..