They are brought up in posh houses, where only electric appliances are known. They are not acquainted with how smoke smells or fells like, leave alone its color. Their lives revolve around mommy and daddy, and regular hugs surround them day and night. They are showered with love and gifts, and will have a bash thrown in their honor for improving in class, improving their eating appetites (even those of chocolates) etc. We were shown little or no love…not because our parents didn’t want to; they simply didn’t know how to love (and no wonder some of us haven’t known how to love yet). They only transferred their upbringing to ours. They were not “exposed”. We have never seen them hug, but we have severally seen them quarrel.
Before a pinch or a pat on their back comes (by this I mean a slap), they will have been warned severally. The parents quietly correct them, discuss with them and show them the wrong in what they have done. There was no discussion when we were growing up. Every simple mistake invited yelling and literal battering. There was no time for corrections and discussions, and at times we didn’t quite comprehend why we were being beaten up!
They have learnt to use and actually use all forms of cutlery during meals; handling them is a walk in the park. They don’t mind using sundry utensils, after all the mother or house help will do the washing. They have learnt that hot liquids poured in plastics have a ‘funny smell’, and thus do not consider plastics as a food container. When we grew up, there were vessels of honor and those of ignoble purposes. The vessels of honor included forks, table knives, clay plates and cups and glasses. The latter were plastics, metallic utensils and some that had some paint that would keep falling off and ooze some color. Using a vessel of honor just like I mentioned called for battering. What if it broke? What would visitors (they were considered more important than us) feed on?
At a young age, they know how to operate sophisticated electric appliances. Give them a smartphone, an iPad, a T.V set (they actually know all characters of most programs), home theatres, cookers, etc. (sorry that my list is short) and they will operate them. They speak English like they took a trip to America in their mothers’ wombs. Some of our generation still haven’t gotten rid of their naivety and still cannot operate any. We learnt English in upper primary, if not high school and due to ignorance are still learning proper grammar.
Work comes after everything else. At class four, they only know how to spread their beds, and a few things they have known by observation, not involvement. There is a morning hug awaiting them each morning…We were brought up in the village (or still in town), some by parents some by house helps. They were full of activity. Work came first in their lives; whether drudgery, office work or gigantic investments. There were no greetings in the morning. How your night was remained your own business…unless you had a weird dream that needed prayer or cancellation. We would quickly eat to work on this and that, and at junior higher primary, some would be good at laundry and at farm work.
When will the lives ever bump into each other!