Ageless Hobbies

“Where are the camphor tablets kept?” she whispered.


He gave her a quizzical look and shrugged. She gave him a deadly glare, as deadly as could be in a room that was lit by the soft light emanating from the tiny mobile screen. The shadows danced across her face as they sat in the almost dark basement, trying to be as stealthy and silent as possible.


She pointed a finger at the shelf in the corner of the room and whisper yelled, “The yellow box on the top shelf, go get it.”


He gave a resigned sigh as he hobbled over to the corner and managed to the get the taped cardboard on the floor where they were finishing up their secret task. She lit the camphor tablet, dropped it in the bowl of water and applied a coat of it to her boat. Both of them looked at their handiwork with satisfaction.


Silently they trudged upstairs and out the back door, and covered in the rain overalls, they plodded through the water to the mini stream gushing down the street.

He looked around at the pavement, which was now swollen with rainwater after three days of downpour. A sight, which for most was a cause of groans, brought him immense happiness. He longed to jump in the puddles and splash the muddy mixture on her. Suddenly, he heard a muffled squeal and turned around to see her hunched over and watching her boat cruise through the water spiraling down the cobbled street. Her face reflected so much awe and happiness, that he couldn’t stop the chuckle passing through his lips.


She often narrated to him tales of her invisible seamen fighting the storms and sailing through the unknown waters. Her face was animated when she talked about her childhood hobby, her wrinkles smoothening because of her excitement and her eyes lighting up with joy. Her enthusiasm was so contagious, he couldn’t stop concocting plans to fulfil her wishes, just like he couldn’t do it fifty years ago.


He smiled with adoration in his eyes, as he helped her stand with the support of her cane. She smiled back at him and leaned against him, as the two watched their boat glide through the gutters. Pride shone in her eyes as she stuck her tongue out at him, reminding him that her idea of coating the paper with melted camphor was sheer brilliance.


A flash went off in the background, as their granddaughter clicked yet another picture. She giggled at the sight, her grandparents were acting like kids and she loved them for it. It wasn’t the first time they had sneaked out trying to relive some of their hobbies, and like always they had failed at being discreet. She now had a huge collection of them pursuing their ageless hobbies. She continued snapping away, as the two old kids stood under the pouring rain, clothed in rain overalls, wearing goofy expressions as they made fun of each other and proudly defying the notion that age confines you to the cage of adulthood.



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