For those of you who didn’t get what the title meant, I will not trouble you further in reminding the math permutation & combinations nightmares one might have had in their high-school years.
We live in a nicest apt that overlooks a serene park and a hill. This nicest view and the cool neighborhood soothes the pinch of my half paycheck flying out as rent.And this year my parents happened to visit/live with us for about 3 months in our home-sweet-home.
And thats the end of good part of the story. The heading refers to the combination of park and parents that lead to an infinite number of consequences that’s been still baffling us. The park really helped me take care of my dads boredom, over which I hadn’t had a slightest of the clue of how to catch his eye all through his stay with us.I always knew my dad as a person who worked best in isolation and he instantly fell in love with walking at/around/in the park. He over-used the fitbit that my brother gifted him and chipped in a staggering 20-25k steps per day. That put me in instant shame for my fitness lacking sense. For a while I doubted if he went psychic in challenging the fitbit. Whatever it is ,he’s been taken care of by the park. My mom is gifted with the ability of being ever-busy if she chooses to and is self-sustaining requiring no effort. She has this magic wand which she whips to create some activity for herself, be it household chores, spiritual books,chitter-chatter friends, endless-fotos-of-her-grandson and nevertheless whatsapp being the latest addition. (I cant stop short of telling enough if I start on how whatsapp has changed my mom into a teenage daughter.) She saw my dads obsession with the park and one day she went down to give it a try. She quickly made friends with all people of all nationalities,including their pets. At the dinner table she has these never-ending tales of people at the park, especially of the fellow indian elderly who didn’t mind in going an extra mile of sharing their grown-up childrens salaries,home-ownership costs,family wealth stats and about all other feathers in their caps. I cringed on how they were giving out their personal information and on how their kids were beguiled by their parents.Park has been my parents major attraction and it didn’t take long for me to realize that my parents were enchanted by the park.
I understood that all the elderly in the neighborhood come to the park as pastime.My parents started having tea-time with their friends and now we inevitably know them too. My mom has become a member of Us-Park-moms whatsapp group and their group unity strengthened beyond bond-of-unbreakable.Eventually my parents left and my astonishing moment came when my dad complained that there were too many desis around and he felt he lacked privacy.However, both my mom and dad, had me swear that I buy a house next to the park.
The park turned out to be a bitter-sweet thing for us.It helped my parents in enjoying their stay.But until my parents visit, my wife and I never observed all these people whenever we strolled at the park. We always perceived it as a private lovers cove and never cared/bothered to notice anybody. This information of these many people(now friends to my parents) coming to the park daily made us outright uncomfortable, especially my wife. The instant change that I observed was that my wife stopped wearing shorts to the park,for she might now be stalked by indian aunties around.Her fears came true, when she started being pulled over by elderly ladies group for a brief chit-chat. The chit-chat slowly grew to the extent of enquiring about our family planning. Surprisingly I was spared from being pulled-over for I never spoke in the language familiar to them. Of all the ladies, there is this outstanding Mrs.Raj who we felt like she always knew what we were doing.She knows what time I go for a run in the day, she knows when my wife changed covers on the bed, she knows which alternate route we took on our stroll rather going round the park.She asks a question, we answer and the she says ‘yeah,i know’. Her ghostly stalking made us fear about anything we did.Then there is this another woman who always asked the same set of question every-time she sees us, despite the fact that we answered for the same questions a hundred times now.An other lady always waves at me with such enthusiasm, that it makes onlookers feel like that she found her long-lost son. I don’t even know who she is, but I just wave back for sake of not disappointing her. Also, I now have an unwanted god-mother who promised my mom that she will take best care of me in my moms absence. My wife has a park-gifted 85 yr old nanna and she is the only person that my wife is comfortable with in the whole lot.
Thanks to my moms tea-party, I also know some of the neighbors around whose parents were friends to my parents. After parents left, we are now left with these unwanted awkward smiles with my neighbors not knowing if we are still friends or whatever. I will not be surprised if a cop comes knocking my door to find if we are doing okay, for there is a high possibility that some aunty might call 911 to report our missing from the park for two straight days. We are sort of implicitly prepared for any bizarre unique encounters which can be one of the outcomes of my parent,park combination. This combination has annihilated the way we always saw the park but somehow also made us feel more homey.
Exaggeration is the sauce of pun and fun.