Another one of those priceless Mother-isms...
Mom: Your grandma says you shouldn't be going out for walks at night.
Mom :You know there are bad things hovering the air that'll upset you..
Me: Like what? ghosts? Bad spirits? What kind of strange stories you come up with!
The mother looks to the father for moral support (and mostly for someone to endorse her view). The chap
and the father are trying their best not to get drawn into this conversation.
Mom : Ok, be like that and not listen to me as usual . Even grandma and xyz aunt says you need to tuck a
small leaf of neem into your hair before you head out after dark. Neem wards off bad things, you know.
You won't get startled if you see bad things on the road.
Me: Bad things like what ? A man smoking and another one peeing against the tree. Ma, neem is just an
antiseptic. I don't think it can keep away bad things , even if there are bad things in the air!
Mom : Oh, you stupid girl. Always arguing and asking questions..We oldies say things from experience.
By now the father and chap are rolling their eyes (a tad inconspicuously because they don't want to be caught
out) and I am trying my best to control my laughter.
Mom : Of course , it is true - that's why even grandma and xyz aunt also said the same thing.
By now I can't control it any longer and burst out laughing , followed by strange guffaw-type sounds. Yeah,
the menfolk decided that a good laugh outweighed the merits of showing solidarity and all.
Mom: Ok, all of you laugh at me! But it is true.
The best course of action, I decide at this point , is to say ok to her.
Me : Fine, I'll do it.
The mother relaxes finally and a look that can only be described as "Finally she sees sense!" settles on her
So if you are out in the streets of Chennai and see a girl with a neem leaf tucked into her hair, you know who
that is :-) Yeah, mothers are priceless !