Their father bought them a car. This car. This red car. With yellow wheel caps, yellow seats and a white steering wheel. At the rear, this car sported a ‘Made In China’ tag. It was a different age. China was yet to be crowned an economic giant and ‘China’ still had a positive ring to it.
Having said that, the boys were disappointed that the car was not ‘Made in Japan’ as the other cars that their father bought them did.
The car did move with a smooth whine. For a few days, it was treated very well. Dust wiped off, many times, and given prime position right under the pillow, as the boys slept.
The days wore on and all hell gradually broke loose. For the car suddenly started finding legs of tables, chairs, humans and plain straight walls in its way.
A few months passed.
The car began to take the air. I mean, it was flying about. Hurled with supreme speed , accuracy and intent, which, if information is to be believed, inspired zillions of Tata Sumos to take to the air in Tamil movies !
The car just stood its ground. Dented here and there, the windshield broken, and the odd plastic tyre, twisted, but standing its ground. And the engine still whined very well. Made in China. It was !
A few years passed. The car still whined but moved. And pretty well too.
On a day when then mother and father were away, the younger boy, with a penchant for design and art worked on it. With a sharp blade and imagination. as tools. ‘
Volvo’. He wrote. ’10’ he wrote. ‘MRF’ he wrote. Actually, scrapping the red paint. Revealing grey metal inside. And suddenly, the car seemed to have acquired a certain character.
The rally driving he saw on Doordarshan needed an outlet. And this car was right there.
The older one, not given to such talent and imagination, hemmed and hawed. And took to moaning the loss of original paint. The parents were subtly made aware with select breaches of information. And to his surprise, they gave him a look that almost told him ‘grow up’ !
Many decades pass.
The young boy with imagination is now a successful corporate type. Using the imagination to scrape out the surface and give character to projects and proposals. And by the way, blessed with a young son, who is just studying the art of making cars fly.
And yes. The car that was made in China, when ‘Made in China’ had a different ring to it, stands. A little broken and written all over, but standing proudly !
And the older son, yes, the same one who almost got the ‘grow up’ look from his parents, hopes to garner some sympathy hits on his blog through this post ! At the least, he pleads for a different ‘look’ from his readers.
In return, he promises to work on his imagination.