I was heading back from a swim. Actually, I took a boogie board with me today, paddled out over the shallow rocks and away from the scattered groups of people lolling in the water, until I reached a nice clear sandy spot all to myself. Almost. Just me and a SUP boarder, which was okay, he was tremendously easy on the eyes.
The boarder had a golf stick with an old style wooden paddle attached to the end, and he was playing a game of golf in the water! Honing his skills, in one fluid movement he would pop a buoyant little ball straight up in the air and on its descent smack it mightily, trying to get it as close as possible to a pole which served as a warning marker for vessels. He would then paddle over and do it again, until he finally hit the pole with the ball.
Amazing! I want a paddle like that, and I want to play! I do. I wanna wanna wanna! I feel like a puppy that, anytime it sees a ball, wants to play.
Friday means fireworks
Tonight is fireworks night, though, and I have to bid goodbye to my friends Lana and Robert, who are flying home to Dunedin, have dinner, and then sit on my lanai waiting in high anticipation for this magical weekly Friday night treat. So that’s why I’m hotfooting it on the lagoon boardwalk after my swim.
Round and round the mulberry bush
I’m approaching three Indians, an older couple and an adult woman, maybe the daughter, who is a little further ahead on the walkway. I pass her animated parents and as I get close to her, I say, “Are your folks speaking Hindi?” because to my ears it sounds like a harsh sounding version of the language.
“No, Gujerati,” she replies.
“Oh.” I walk past her.
“How did you know?” I hear her say to me.
I turn around briefly, “Because I’m Indian.”
“Where in India?” she shoots back instantly.
“I’m not from India,” I reply, turning my head to her but walking away.
Barely a beat later (a beat is too long), she says, “How did you know the language?”
“Because I’m Indian,” I repeat.
“Where from India?” she immediately asks again.
Geez, I think, and round and round the mulberry bush we go. I consider just getting away, but then decide to state the obvious. “Not all Indians are from India,” I say.
Her expression does not change a flicker; she either gets it or doesn’t, but if she doesn’t then I really don’t have the time to explain. I mean, hallo, are we living in the same global world?
Later, as I emerge from the outdoor showers of The Modern hotel, I see her, sans parents, sitting in the garden lanai of The Ilikai. Feeling a tad bad about earlier, I smile at her and she smiles back, but I don’t say anything.
There’s no way I’m going round the mulberry bush with her again.