This is a book that I first checked out from the library in Karratha when Ashwin was 4. It is a lively book with repetitive phrases about a little boy who turns into a miniature superhero everytime he sneezes. I picked it up from the library again thinking Divya would like it.
As I read it, I was teleported back three years. I would sit on the floor to read with chubby Ashwin (hard to believe!) beside me and baby Divya on the infant rocker facing us. As I came to one of the many sneezes, which I exaggerated, (ACHOOOOOOOOOOO) , Divya would break into a laughter that shook her whole body and the rocker and caused us to pause the book and soak it in. She would then look at my face as I read the book, with eagerness and a MEGA laugh ready to erupt behind all her features, waiting for me to come to the next sneeze. Repeat that wonderful delicious laugh!
While I remembered the book, the story and the catch phrases in it very well, I had forgotten that associated baby laugh. As I read yesterday, for a minute, I was bewildered as to how the baby had been swapped by the little girl who was enjoying the book with me now. I time travelled. I looked into her face and recognised the sparkle of the eyes, the sweetness of the lips forming the laugh, the top class enjoyment of both the book and the cuddly reading time from three years ago. I looked to notice, capture, file away and be mesmerised. As I must have done all those years ago.
If I had a photo or even a video of that moment, the memory could not have been as vivid as the words in this book made them seem.
Reading is magic. In more ways than one!