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To All Dads and Their Dancing Girls!!

October 3, 2020 | By

Not everything in life can be synopsised. Sometimes it is a blessing when we can’t! For the daughter, the father turns life into a theatre, full of music and colour, muses Piu.

To all Dads and their Dancing Girls_Piu_Mahapatra

It was Baba (Dad) who dropped me to CLT (Children’s Little Theater or also known as Sishu Rangmahal) and waited there in the little park till the darkness descended. I used to run out with the little ‘botua’ (cloth purse), safekeeping my pair of ghungrus. He was always there, sweaty and tired. It was a long walk, back and forth from home.

CLT was founded by Samar Chatterjee, way back in 1952. He himself was a pioneer in children’s theatre but there was a group of selfless art lovers, art teachers who joined his hand to make an ideal ‘Aban Mahal’.

But this is not about Samar Chatterjee nor Abanindranath. It is about me and my dad. About our journey to and back after the recitals and daily practices.

Almost every time, which was twice a week, the father and the daughter would steal a quick pre-dinner snack before reaching home.

It could be any from a plate of crispy butter dosa in the Sonali restaurant or sizzling hot egg rolls from the roadside strip malls.

It was always one! We shared. That time, during that age, I had always seen Baba counting his money before ordering. Always. We ordered one plate. He waited for me to stop and look up at him and say, ‘Baba, khabe na?’ (Dad, won’t you?)
He waited for me to say that!
I never failed him as well.

Letter to Myself During the Days of Corona

Letter to Myself During the Days of Corona – LnC Series by Piu Mahapatra

And then…there was this evening, when I performed. Thankumani Kutti was a very strict and dedicated teacher. On the contrary, my dad was never strict, but dedicated! She used to beat at our young feet every time we missed a step. We were scared and we made more mistakes. But she was like a fire, a spirit!

That evening, Baba took me to this studio and counted his money, like always and asked the photographer, ‘Take the best shot! That’s my daughter, you should see how she performed today!!’

It was only one photograph, just like that single egg roll.
Then again, all we need is one father, to make our life a theatre. Full of music and colour.

(Artwork: Piu Mahapatra)

Click here to read more Letters to Myself During the Days of Corona every Saturday.😊

A painter, facilitator, and art consultant by profession, Piu never let go the opportunity to work around and along with the ‘Curious little George’ of different schools in India and abroad. Her articles on art education and awareness have been published in different contemporary art journals of India and Virginia for more than a decade. She loves to let her hair go down and often makes pathetic attempts to write poetry and short stories for children. The only thing she has ever done good is letting her son soar high and low with his wings open wide and fear-free.
All Posts of Piu Mahapatra

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    Today’s Motivation

    <div class=at-above-post addthis_tool data-url=></div>The only person who is educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change.
~ Carl Rogers<!-- AddThis Advanced Settings above via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Advanced Settings below via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Advanced Settings generic via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Share Buttons above via filter on get_the_excerpt --><!-- AddThis Share Buttons below via filter on get_the_excerpt --><div class=at-below-post addthis_tool data-url=></div><!-- AddThis Share Buttons generic via filter on get_the_excerpt -->
    "The only person who is educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change." ~ Carl Rogers