Finally a nice sunny Saturday afternoon after weeks of rain. And 18 children turned up to cheerfully celebrate the weather. Giving them some time to play first seems to help in quelling restlessness.
First I spoke to them about their favorite person. Usually it was Amma or Appa. The reason being ‘ because they buy me whatever I ask’. One child said it was her uncle. ‘I share everything with him’. ‘Share’ is another English word that has entered our vocabulary like ‘feeling’.
Coming up with their birthdays in English or tamil is tough for some of the Thalaiyattumund kids. We did this exercise to find the oldest and youngest kids. The younger kids got the picture postcards while the older ones got envelopes.
As it was the first letter they are writing in their lives, we did some discussion on what they were going to write. It was decided that they would write to their parents. Hard facts came up during this discussion. My father left. My mother left. My father remarried. The language was Tamil so that the parents could ask someone to read it to them even if they couldn’t read.
And then they settled down to write. When it came to addressing it, they were rather clueless. They have never had to write their address. Street names were not known. In the course of this week, they will find out, and we will write it out as best as possible and hope for kindness from postmen.