It was almost four years ago that my husband skilfully managed to make me watch another of Meryl Streep‘s movie to convince me of her great acting talents and this time he tricked me into it saying that there’s a character in it that’s just like me.
I was hooked.
The film was Devil Wears Prada and the character he was referring to was Andrea Sachs played by Anne Hathaway! I was very excited to watch this cute and hard-working girl until I found out that she was the target of much ridicule for her dressing sense and style. So that’s how my husband saw me – a girl with no sense of style.
I found a sad little corner of the house and secretly licked my wounds. Instead of frantically getting a makeover and taking a crash course in make-up, I adamantly stuck to my style – whatever that was.
Then we travelled to Edinburgh with a one year old in tow. Dressing and makeup were replaced with diapers and baby food. Having my hair in one place and no drool on my face was the best makeup. Living in perhaps the most beautiful city in UK and being surrounded by beautiful women did no good to my ego. Even the old ladies wore pearl necklaces for a walk in the gardens!!
Wait, I have a point and I will come to it. Perhaps!
Summer’s here or it is supposed to be here and am eagerly waiting for the Edinburgh International Book festival to start next month. I am attending a couple of events and I don’t want to be Andrea Sachs with the blue sweater.
I will address you as pig in this post. I know that the pigs will be angry but I will personally say sorry to them.
Dear Pig, I was very young when I saw my mother braving you in a bus. You were middle-aged and were leaning on her, rubbing your crotch on her shoulder. She was sitting on the ladies seat and politely asked you to step back. When you ignored her numerous times, she lost it and shouted at you – ‘Step back or I will slap you.’ Everyone in the bus looked at you. You stepped back. I was a boy aged 7-8 years but I remember looking at you with hatred in my eyes. I still remember your face.
Then my sister told me about another one of your ilk. She was returning from a wedding with mom. A car was…
Yesterday husband, kiddo and I went out with my parents. It’s their last couple of days here and we just wanted to go around the city. We first went to the farmer’s market near the castle. After visiting the stalls and buying a few things here and there, we settled down to chit-chat with a cup of coffee.
A few minutes later, a young girl came up with her accordion box and started playing. On the inside of her box it was written, “Playing back student loan”. She played for some time smiling and nodding at the tourists and people passing by. No one played much attention to her though some people smiled back.
Then came a woman with her little daughter. She stopped in front of this girl. For a couple of minutes she explained something to her daughter in soft words often pointing at the girl with the accordion. She then took out a few quid and asked her daughter to put them into the box.
I was so much arrested with this scene. That moment epitomised for me the very essence of compassion and empathy. I am sure after that conversation the little girl will be able to experience and feel for others who are having a hard time. She will be able to imagine what it would be like to be in that person’s shoes.
I know my son is too small to have understood what all this was about and I am sure there are others ways in which I could teach him compassion. This incident was another lesson in compassion and I was thrilled to experience it especially after just having read Zephyr’s post about it.