Yesterday morning I talked with my 4 and half year old nephew. Here is an excerpt from our conversation.
He asked, “Where are you Phupoo (paternal aunt) right now?”
I replied, “In America.”
He asked, “Is it far away?”
I answered, “Yes!”
Nephew asked, “Do they have load-shedding?”
I said, “NO!”
He replied, “Phupoo, it is very hot here and there is no light.”
I was quiet.
He asked, “Hello, Phupoo can you hear me?”
“Yes,” I said.
Then we talked about his school, his teacher, his classmates and then he asked,
“Do you know Daman Morr?” (a road intersection, few miles away from my paternal house)
I said, “Yes.”
He said something that I didn’t understand. He repeated twice, but still couldn’t figure out what he was saying. Then my nephew got irritated, and he gave the phone back to his dad, my brother.
My brother asked, “Did you understand what he said?” and he giggled.
I said, “No.”
He said, “He asked you if you know Daman Morr and then he said, “My girlfriend lives there!” and my brother repeated the sentence twice.
What goes on in a 4-year old child’s mind? What is he learning? Load shedding, something I never experienced as a child, and having a girlfriend, a relationship I had no information about at the age of 4.