SJM and I once talked about starting a (comedy) desi writing group here in the Bay-area. The reason we wanted it to be "comedy" writing was because, as I put it, "How many more "my mom - she doesn't understand me!" stories can we listen to??"
I only joke because it's true!
And I'm about to add to the cornucopia.
During my childhood, my parents gave me a great gift: travel. With my family, I've been to Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Taiwan, Italy, England, and Germany - not to mention India and Malaysia. I've had the travel bug ever since, and it is insatiable.
As some of you know, one of my fave bloggers is getting married in India and I'm very excitedly planning my first trip back in .... EIGHT years. Because India and Malaysia are home to my mother and father (respectively), I've seen *nothing* in either country (aside from the insides of houses belonging to people who are, allegedly, tangentially related to me.) Besides the 'vedding', I'm also excited about SEEING India for the first time. I'm concentrating on South India and I'm planning to spend 3 weeks. Part of the time, I'll be with friends from the wedding, and part of the time, I'll be traveling by myself.
My mother (and here's where the sob story starts) has problems with this. I can understand that, but instead of being direct about what's bothering her, she must throw out a few warm-ups first. Apparently, she feels I should not go to India for that long because:
(1) "Insects will bite you." Seriously, what? And if I were traveling with other people, the insects would preferentially bite them?
(2) "People will stare." As opposed to .... how they stare when I'm with you? Or how I'm always stared at in India? To me, this is part and parcel of traveling in India, and I'm not concerned about it.
(3) "Kerala is like this, and like that" My mother hasn't been to Kerala since I was 12 years old. When confronted about this, she claims that her assertion are based on the observations of two of my aunts. My paternal aunts. Who live in Malaysia. Translation: not bloody likely that she's talked to them about Kerala ... ever.
(4) "I'm not sure how safe it is, and I'm worried." Bingo! We have a winner! This, of course, is what was really bothering her - and it's completely legitimate. I'm not sure why she tried to Jedi-mindtrick me with the former, all it did was annoy me and make me less receptive to talking about this point.
Sigh. Sometimes, I wonder if I'm (more or less) direct simply because my mom is not.