When we are out of our home, running errands, traveling around the city, Disha likes to handle the money we spend.
When we buy bus or metro tickets she is one who hands the money. Invariably the conductor smiles and says thank you. Even when they are overworked and in one of their bad moods. Disha is happy, after spreading cheer. Karthik and I have big smiles on our faces.
She is unhappy if there is just a single note or coin to be handed over. And is overjoyed when she has to give away multiple notes. She hands them one by one, never all together, savoring the whole process, not wanting it to end too soon. At times when I absentmindedly hand over the money myself, there is a loud protest. Sometimes the money is handed back so that she can then give it herself.
At times she plays around and does not give the entire amount. She hands over a part of the cash and hides the rest behind her. Auto drivers and shop keepers wait patiently for her to give the reminder change. I wonder how long will their patience last, but not once until now has anyone been rude or irritated with Disha’s behavior. Although they urge her to give them the money.
I really wish we would all be more tolerant in our expression when dealing with all people and not just small children.
When we are at home, her newest game is to carry a book , bowl or a pillow over her head and go around selling fruits to all of us. It started off on an impulse, when I was trying to get everyone at home finish an over ripe papaya, I asked Disha if she would like to sell it to everyone. She enjoyed it so much the first time that it has become a two-three times a day affair. Her tatha even gave her ten rupees for one piece. Rest of us do hand over pretend money, even if we end up getting real fruit in return.
Then there is the cycle service. She goes around the house on her cycle delivering sugarcane juice, bowls of yummy walnut ice cream. She places the containers in the basket behind her seat and then goes to every person at home, gets off the cycle and hands over their share.
In all these instances, Disha is learning the ways this world around her works. In her own way. Only when she wants to. Spreading smiles and in a manner which is cherished by both Karthik and I.