by Vimala Ramu
According to Hindu mythology, Hanuman had not been aware of his own super strength due to a curse, till the venerable Jambavan told him about it. It was only then that he took off on his cross ocean flight to look for the kidnapped lady Seeta.
Likewise, I never knew that I was a superwoman till much later in life. In fact, in my younger days, I actually lacked confidence to enter running races. I used to be scared that my clumsy, uncoordinated run would show up.
So, while in college I used to play power games like Throw ball, Shot put etc rather than run races. Even the finesse of Tenniquoit and Badminton were not for me.
After marriage I found myself never hesitating to lift heavy trunks while my more delicate sisters-in law would be watching in wonder. I never shrunk from physical labour like grinding dosa batter or marathon rope skipping.
When I started my life as a housewife, a senior relative in the family gifted me a heavy cast- iron mortar and pestle to do dry pounding jobs like making masala etc.(The electrical mixers and grinders had not yet come into vogue) The one foot long pestle came in handy for other jobs like hammering the nails.
One day, I was standing on a table trying to hit a nail on to the wall with the pestle. But since the nail got bent, I left the pestle on the table and tried to wrest the nail out. In my struggle to do so, the iron pestle was dislodged and it fell from the table and broke into two pieces. Like the tailor in the story of ‘Seven at one stroke’, my husband gleefully advertised the
fact that his wife was a super woman who could break iron pestles.
My life continued breaking as many breakable gadgets as I could break. Once I walked into the French window of my son’s apartment in Los Angeles. I don’t understand why people have to keep their glass panes so clean as to even deny their existence. I not being a ghost had of course a material body which would have got hurt if only the pane had been thinner.
Recently, while I was trying to reach for the towel on the stand after my bath, my foot slipped on a wet patch and I landed on my right derriere with a thud. Apart from a sore bottom, I suffered no other damage. But, I don’t know how the 38 year old porcelain wash basin which was quite far from me and which I swear I never touched, got the impact of my fall in relay and collapsed in smithereens due to the domino effect.
Once again the husband went announcing to all that his super woman had broken a wash basin this time beyond repair.
Am I really an abnormal woman? Why do things keep breaking around me? In this fragile world, am I ‘a bull in the china shop?’ Sometimes, I felt like breaking into that crazy ‘Break’ dance of Hrithik Roshan----mein aisa quon hoon?
–Why am I like this? Any way, it is a matter of some consolation that what all fractures my husband has had so far were all before marriage.
Thus I continue into my mid seventies, a solid 60 Kgs packed into a 5 foot frame standing tall and surveying the rubble of my broken household things strewn all around me. The End