“I come from a village near Kanpur. See there is Lucknow near Kanpur, then comes Unnao; Then, the village - Kali Mitti! I don’t like the village much. There is nowhere to explore, not much to go see. Dadi - Mausi - Mama - everyone is there in the village but they don’t let me play; they don’t let me go anywhere. Dadi says, “Don’t jump, play easy.” Mausi says, “Play within the house.” Mama says, “Don’t be noisy.” Now, how does one play? Does anyone play at home? How does one play and not make noise?
I had a lot of friends in the village. My namesakes. Shivangi, Shivani, Khushbu, Lata and Arti. Whenever we got together, we played to our heart’s content - shouted, jumped and made a lot of noise. We loved it, but someone or other soon came scolding and asked us to be quiet.
It’s been two or three months in Bangalore but I like being here - Go to school. Set up the stall with didi at half past five and back to home at night. I, didi and my younger brother play a lot on Sundays. There is a huge park here. And mummy never stops us from playing.
At times, some landlords say that the kids are too noisy. Mummy simply rents another house. She never stops us from doing our thing. Mummy says — earn lots, play lots! She also doesn’t stop us from eating corn. She says - eat as much as you want. When I don’t find friends to play with, I just enjoy with didi and my younger brother. I don’t have many friends here but I love playing here.”