As a child, I was very choosy about food. It was a pain to feed me. The only possible way to make me eat my meal was to distract me with stories. My mother was a wonderful narrator, and she had a rich stock of stories to tell me. My father, however, would have a hard time as I would ask questions when the stories did not make sense, and I could tell when he was making them up.
Once, when I had a stomach infection, I woke up in the middle of the night due to pain. My mother went to the kitchen to cook the only thing that I would agree to eat those days, and my father picked me up and took me out on the verandah. I must have been four years old then. My father wiped the tears off my face and showed me the moon and the pattern of an old woman in it. The memory of that night still transports me to that verandah with the cool summer breeze drying my tears, the sound of utensils clattering in the kitchen as my mother prepared my food, the moonlight washing the street outside, the comfort of my father's lap, the peacefulness of midnight with the knowledge that the world is asleep, and the pattern of a kind old woman watching over us from the moon.
Somewhere, something inside me had captured the beauty of it all, for me to cherish years later, on a similar summer night.