R and I have been going for 5 pm walks every day. It has been a month and now we’ve become a gang of 8.

It started with the little boy who told me about Rattlesnakes, Black mambas, Pythons, and Spitting Cobras. He told me about all the types of Venoms. There are 4. Or is it 5? The shape of venom glands; that those exist. That a venomous snake’s head is triangular and non-venomou’s round. The different ways in which each of these snakes attack. I wonder what hard-earned knowledge my brain discarded to make space for words like: Neurotoxin, Cardio-toxic, Hemotoxic, and Cytotoxic…?

Then joined the boy who showed us all the beehives in our colony. There are 6.

After the walk, the 5 pm gang sits on the bench where everyone speaks at the top of their voices, at the same time. One littulian (Littulians are 2-5 years olds) is always yelling “I am 5 years old” for consistency’s sake. On more energetic days, we play in the park; spraying water from a Colin spray bottle on others, while they run for life. Some days, the olders (6-10 years) spend all of their time explaining a complicated game to the Littulians.

“You will give us a category…categories can be cars, colors, animals, etc. Then we will pick things from the category…then you..”
“I will be orange”
“Sure…if the category is Fruits or Colours. But don’t announce it like this in front of the denner. He has to guess and then chase you.”
“So give us a category”

The littulans are easy to catch because they do not know they have run AWAY from the chaser. You’d think that makes them better chasers. So the Olders go through the trouble of explaining the concept of “categories” to them; only to realize that they had forgotten to explain the concept of ‘chaser’ to them. So now everyone one is running and no one is catching. “I am orange” yells the designated chaser mid-sprint. And the explaining begins all over again.

If things work out or seem like they can work out, many many minutes are spent learning new words “Jas-mint?” “Jaasmeeg?” “Jazzminz?”

Then the picked names are announced to the chaser, “Okay we are ready: Rose, Lily, Lotus, Mogra, Jasmii, and Orange”

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