- Be the subject matter of a contemporary movie making a ‘statement’
- Interest NGO workers
- Promote the use of rubber
- Make people talk
- Give my husband a shock
Sorry to disappoint you all….I caught hay fever.
(Allergic rhinitis, known as hay fever, is caused by pollens of specific seasonal plants, airborne chemicals and dust particles in people who are allergic to these substances.)
It renewed my interest in pollination, something that I last thought of in my Biology class in school. Well…not really. I had also given it a thought when I took to gardening one summer vacation. There was this horrible looking rose plant that refused to flower. I had given two suggestions to my mother, who, on hearing them, gave up her deepest wish of seeing me become a doctor someday. I had asked her if we could buy some butterflies and leave them on the plant…or better still, train my pet parrot to fly out of the cage, get some damn pollen from somewhere…and make the damn plant flower!
So that’s how close I got to pollination in my life…and that’s how close my mother got to being called the mother of a doctor. My mother had given up on my sister long before this incident, when she opted out of Biology as her sixth subject and took up Home Science instead. Later my sister complained that there was a lot of Biology in Home Science as well, as she had to remember the names of indoor and outdoor plants.
(I sometimes fear that if life comes full circle, I will be punished with two equally hopeless daughters…That reminds me, I need to ask how my husband was in Biology.)
Anyway, hay fever has made a Niagara out of my nose. I shed more water than I drank in my life (or hope to drink in the remaining days of my life). I walk around with a natural clown-nose, a box of tissues, and a nasal spray. I have lost three of my fully working senses…taste, hearing and smell (my vision having deserted me long back, when I turned myopic). Of the only remaining sense,’ touch’…well, with all the other senses gone or diminished, I don’t see much use of it. (Moreover, most people are avoiding any kind of ‘touch’ with me, thinking I am contagious, though I am not. Even if I was, trust me dear reader, you won’t catch it from my blog. I have a firewall installed!)
This poor-sensory existence wasn’t all that bad if my friends hadn’t decided to cook biriyani, eat out at KFC, go perfume shopping and visit the tulip garden all while I was unwell. Tulip garden! For god’s sake…that would be a pretty polinical party where I would probably hear one pollen grain saying to another “Let’s check out the new chicks that landed on the yellow tulips today.” OR “Hey, nice powder you are wearing!”
Friends are for tough times…yeah sure, to make it tougher!! Urrrggghhh!!
Hay fever taught me more than just the most decent way of blowing my nose in public. It opened my eyes to the five friends I have in this country…and the five senses I never stopped to think about.