Friday, 3 June 2016

Changed Attitudes in the Children

The loud popping sound that an empty frooti tetra pack makes, when crushed with the foot stamping on it, is sometimes very tempting, just for fun, or to draw attention, or to scare someone. Many of us had done it ourself or seen others do it. The flattened remains of the tetra packs carelessly strewn around reminds about the sound that it had made - similar to that of a gun shot.

I was warming up for the soccer match, there were few kids wearing full uniform complete with soccer boots on the ground, playing. They were quite handy during the local match, in the absence of ball boys, to pick the ball that is kicked beyond the ground in the bushes. The good thing with the kids is that they go to fetch the ball very happily, almost rushing like golden retrievers, when there are competitors. The small things like that of getting the ball back and handing over to the adults make them so happy.

As I went near the post I saw a puffed tetra pack of frooti, lying on the ground. The temptation for me to make that sound was so overpowering as the packet lay there ready to produce the loudest popping sound. With full force I stamped on it. To my utter dismay there was no sound. The only sound it produced was – 'Hissplash!' in english – 'chokop!' in dzongkha (sic) . The frooti tetra pack was not empty and it belonged to one of the children. I was so worried that the owner of the frooti juice would cry and throw tantrums, like the kids of yonder days. I was not carrying any money as the soccer dress does not have pockets.

I went looking for the child who owned the frooti to console him before he throws tantrums in the public. I found him and told him that I have just destroyed the frooti juice and that I will give him another one when the game gets over. Contrary to my expectations, the child was smiling and told me that it is okay, before I could give my explanations. Perhaps he had already seen the naughty acts of an adult.

Had it been children of our time, the child would have cried till the time new bottle of juice is brought to him and preferably the exact one. Crying and wining made the things done for the children and manhandling made the thing gets done for the adults. It was as simple as that. It takes keen observations and maybe, near embarrassing situations to unlearn certain things and capture the changing demeanor and behaviours in the future generations.

I kneeled down to talk with him at eye level. The behaviour of the child had shown me how much the times had changed. I was filled with appreciation for him, for being considerate, forgiving and understanding beyond some of us - the adult. He must have just started his pre school. With such kids, with such changed in attitudes, aren't we supposed to nurture the goodness in our children and make policies befitting the future generations?

Gone are the days of requiring to use brute force to make them learn kayata cha, khayata chha, gayata jha,..... 'The violence begets violence' – if there are some, involved in domestic violence or violence against women and children, we need to reserve our blame, for he must be straightened using violence during school days. 'If violence could rectify a tough guy like him it could straighten anyone' - had been taught to him subtly.