Remembering George

Silent spectator: Appreciate their presence.   | Photo Credit: T.Singaravelou

Wile brushing my teeth mechanically, my mind was rambling between Darcy and Rochester. Both had weaknesses, which made them human and normal. I couldn't decide who my favourite was. But yes, I preferred them a thousand times to Edward, the flawless vampire. While my mind was thus engaged on these non existent entities, the corner of my eyes perceived a pair of unblinking eyes fixed on me. He never failed to fascinate me and I guess he found me every bit alluring as he stared at me with dogged devotion. Initially I found such unflinching attention disconcerting. But he was resolute and firmly stood his ground, I mean literally.

And before I forget, his name is George, our family lizard. Oh ok, now don't roll your eyes and get all ‘OMG-she's-a-freak' on me. I assure you, if you see George, you'll find him every bit interesting, not just physically but temperamentally too.

Real hero

George is not your regular ubiquitous house lizard. He has shown such valour that would put a lion to shame. He has faced long and furious battles with my mom. He has always cleverly escaped my mom's repeated attempts to ambush him. Understandably, my mom was anxious to get rid of this foreigner who unabashedly watched her every move in kitchen. Mom interpreted his presence as an evil eye that caused the ‘dishes to go wrong'. His disarming presence often caused my poor startled mom to throw in a bit more salt than necessary. This resulted in my mom's militant decision- ‘extradite the vermin'.

With all due respect to George and his kin people, it is only to retain originality that I retain the foul word. To mark the moment of my mom's fatal decision, I christened him George. His name was not inspired by George W.Bush or George of the jungle; it was more of a spur of the moment thing.

I was pleased with George's presence. Firstly, because I don't share the same repulsion my mom has towards his kind and my mom definitely needed someone else to concentrate on than me. Predictably, my mom directed her energies on George. She divided her time between asking her colleagues about their experiments with lizards and googling ways to get rid of household pest. The rest of her time was spent applying theory to her battle with George. But George outsmarted my mom. He had obviously been well acquainted with our house as he knew every escape route, every hole and every camouflage belt. Eventually my mom gave up and George emerged as the clear winner. After a silent truce with a bid to placate my mom, George heroically ate up the stray cockroaches which still remained even after a spell of ‘HIT' and no matter how brave the cockroaches were, mom could never reconcile with them. Looking back, though dear George is not with us today, he did make our prosaic life interesting and though lizards can't read this article, I know that they understand how much I appreciate their wee presence in this big bad world.


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Printable version | Jan 24, 2022 11:45:15 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/nxg/Remembering-George/article16196430.ece

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