THE CASE OF THE MISSING FOOD
As a kid, I was very much in awe of Lord Krishna, because I felt he was very much like me. He loved food, especially butter, and so did I. I loved to explore, in particular, all that I was not supposed to explore. Those that were forbidden to me.
My mom is super efficient, she finishes all her chores like lightning. And then come teach me, make sure I do my homework on time and so on. So, the curry for the dinner would be ready by evening. It can be tomato curry, soya bean or even paneer. And I loved to eat them, more than the idli or chapatti, hot and instantly. But I wasn’t allowed to. I had to wait till dinner. No way.
So I would sneak into the kitchen, whenever my mom is not around, and eat, and would empathise with Krishna. These moms, they make yummy food, and then ask you to wait. Why do they let us stare at the food, and not eat it, I would tell Krishna. But there was no use in being sneaky. No matter how noiseless and sly I am, mom always caught me. I don’t know how, but she came to know. I believed she had an exceptionally good measurement of how much she made.
Obviously, I didn’t give up the habit. A few years later, I still ate what I wanted to from my kitchen, by then, I would almost wait for her to catch me . I was enjoying it in fact, her scolding me, and then I would run away flashing all my 32 teeth at her, including the missing ones. There were two or three incidents, where I went up to the kitchen, picked up the spoon, brought it to my mouth, but had to ‘abort mission’ as I heard footsteps. But my mom would still catch me, and be so sure that I did eat. So much so that even I, for a second, would wonder if maybe I did?
So this made me think. How can she still know I had gone there, even when I hadn’t even had a spoon. There was no difference in the amount of what she had made, and I had always been cautious not to leave traces. Then how?
And one day, as I was about to eat again, it hit me. The spoon! The spoon gave me away. My mom, right-handed, would leave the spoon at the right side of the utensil. I would pick it up with my left hand – I am left-handed – and leave it on the left side. So when my mom entered th kitchen, she didn’t even have to open the lid to catch me.
But after all this, I still got caught. This time because I became a little too confident, and ate too much. There was an obvious decrease in the quantity.