She was, as usual, my first guru. She used to give me all sort of crazy Bengali spellings.
Like ‘kujjhatica’. And I have to write the spelling of the author. Pretty complicated to me even now. Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar. How I wished to kick this man when I grow up.
As usual after giving my best efforts for several hours, I used to fail spelling both. And my playing hours would tick by. Mother never allowed me play with my friends until I have finished with reading the sahaj path (that was not sahaj at all) fluently.
The only benefit was I used to read it without any effort as the entire book was memorized and I could recite it eyes shut.
I remember I used to rub the troublesome spelling with my saliva and wipe it out from existence. Then, poker-faced, I used to go to her in the kitchen. “maa, maa, bananta to aar pacchi na. Kemon kore jeno muche geche.”
My mother used to leave me. I did not waste time to kick the ragged…