I’ve been collecting these little snippets of conversation for quite a while. They are not so much fun when you write them down, of course, but for whatever it’s worth, here they are.
The other day I was telling the girls about a small little girl I’d seen at the tennis court who was really swinging her racket with elan. She must have been about six years old. I told Mrini and Tara about her and Mrini said, “what was her name?”
Tara supplied the answer: “Sharapova.”
Hmmmmmm… they’ve been watching too much tennis on TV. Apart from Roger (whom they can recognize a mile off in any newspaper or magazine photo) they know Rafa, are on nodding terms with Andy (Murray) and Novak, and are almost best friends with “Jelena Jelena Jankovic” and Sharapova.
Tara: Baba scolded me because I’m so sad.
She means, I’m so sad because Baba scolded me. She often gets her “because” mixed up with her “that’s why” (to great effect!) when she’s composing a sentence, though she uses it ok when she’s answering a question that starts with “why”.
At the playground, the girls decided to play running games. Mrini ran, and Tara ran behind her, trying to catch her. They completed an entire circuit, twice, and each time Mrini came running up to me at the end (I was the starting pole as well) and collapsed in my arms, and Tara ran up a couple of steps behind her, grabbed her shirt and said, “Mini, I caught you.”
Me: Now Mrini, you go catch Tara.
Tara ran off with Mrini in hot pursuit. Then Mrini overtook Tara and the round ended much the same way that the previous two rounds had ended! They just forgot that Mrini was out to catch Tara!
In the car:
Tara: See, so many cows. One, two, three, four, five cows. (There were three cows. Tara is never going to be a mathematical genius at this rate.)
Me: How many wheels does a car have?
Tara (sitting in the car and counting on her fingers): One two three four five six wheels.
Mrini (getting out of the car and walking around to count): One, two, three, four. Four wheels.
The next morning, they were showing me a sheet of paper on which the outline of a car had been drawn and they had each painted it in, red for the car and black for the wheels.
Me: How many wheels does your car have?
Tara: Two wheels. (It was a side view of the car, so it had only two wheels, of course.)
Mrini (to me): Your car has four wheels.
Me: And how many wheels does your car have?
Mrini: Two wheels.
Me: Then how will it go, with only two wheels?
Mrini: One, two, three, four. Four wheels. (She counted the two wheels that were visible and the two that would have been on the far side of the car.)
Me: That’s good – you counted the wheels you can see as well as the wheels that you can’t see.
Mrini (turning over the paper): Where are the other two wheels?
Tara: I want to open the car.
Mrini: No, I want to open the car! You can lock the car when we get home!
This went back and forth for quite a while, with escalating decibel level, pitch, and frenzy. Finally…
Mrini: Tara, I have a good idea. Shall I tell you a good idea, Tara?
Mrini: Today I’ll open the car. When we get home then you lock the car, ok Tara? Is that a good idea?
Tara (nodding happily and smiling): Ok.
Hmmmmmmmmm …. Mrini is the one to watch out for – she just sugar-coated her words and sold the deal to Tara! And Tara bought it lock, stock, and barrel!
Prior to go on any kind of outing, I make the girls use the toilet at home. Typically, this is how the conversation goes:
Me: Girls, go do sussu.
Tara: I already done sussu.
Me (suspiciously): When?
Tara (with conviction): Today!
I should hope so! This could be at 6 p.m.!