Last night as I was putting Nanma to bed, she asked me to tell her a story. Only recently did I start telling her classic children's stories. Until then it was more like "realistic fiction" because that is what she knows. I had told her the story of Johnny Appleseed - one of my childhood favorites and she loved it. So I thought I could move on to fantasy.
So I begin*..." Long, long ago, there was a boy named Jack"
Nanma: Jack and Jill went up the hill
ME: Not that Jack, another boy. His Mother didn't have any money at home.
Nanma: No money to buy ice-cream. (this is something she hears from me when we walk down to the beach. I can't be buying her ice-cream everyday, can I?)
ME: NO money for icecream, or nice toys or even food. So his mother said.....
Nanma: What's the mother's name?
ME: um..... ah.....Mary. So his mother said "Take our cow to the market and bring back some money"
ME: Because they didn't have money.
Nanma: He should have gone to the ATM!
ME: (Laughing).... Why?
Nanma: Moo Moo doesn't give money. You go with Amma to the ATM, put something in and money comes out. Amma shall we go to the beach and eat ice-cream?
I was stumped. How could I take that story further from there? ATMs are her reality.
My creative brains were fried from thinking of a way to weave an automated teller machine into a story that featured magic beanstalks and giants!
*The exchange above was entirely in Malayalam. It was funnier in that language!