13-Feb-04 (Created: 13-Feb-04) | More in '05.10-Letters To My Daughter'

She has more personality in her pinky than most people have in their whole bodies

However you slice it life in these times is a rush. Along with it goes the stress. This quotient is at its peak around 8AM in our house as I start gathering my work bag and Kavitha's school bag on our way to the 100,000 mile Camry in the driveway while trying to wave the customary bye to her Mom and Narayan who happens to eye us everyday as to where on earth we disappear into.

I check my seat belts and back up while Kavitha settles in with her school bag while ferociously thinking how to annoy her Dad. This annonyance may vary from playing a game to pretending to be a creature with matching vocal chords. On this rainy, wintry day she must have decided to take it easy on me and announced that she would like to play the "My letter is letter.." game. The drive usually takes about 10 minutes covering the 2 mile distance as we pass the traffic lights and an ever present ominous looking Jacksonville Police Officer that directs the traffic into the school from the main road.

The game goes like this. I will start by choosing a letter. Let me say the letter is "t". So I will have to promptly announce to the other player as "My letter is letter T", followed by a clue. As I pass through the tall growth on the side of the road I prepare my clue: "It is tall and green". Kavitha would normally guess this with an answer of "tree". Today she chose to play first and chose "T". Subsequently she declares the clue:

It lives in nature
It is the home of the squirrels

In my mind I start reflecting "My tree is tall and green" while her tree is a thing of life and a part of Nature. So I take in stride the humble, and she moves on to her second letter which she chooses to be "R". And her clue arrives with the same precission:

Soon I will be 7
And I will be taking care of it

With consternation and gloom I pull into the parking lot of the school thinking of ruses to avoid getting a "Rabbit" for her 7th birthday. It used to be her 6th birthday. But recently she weighed the predicament of taking care of a Rabit and decided that the Rabit will be more manageable when she is 7. I am still hoping it will be 8 next year.

I dropped her off with her basket of Valentine gifts to her teacher and co-students and headed back to work. A friend of mine comments in this wake:

"She has more personality in her pinky than most people have in all their bodies."