Monday, November 10, 2008

Nadine, Chapter Seven

People say that lightning doesn’t strike twice. But Chandra must have been at the wrong place at the wrong time. When Nadine was twelve, Chandra gave birth to another girl. Patel named her Smita. It was like turning the clock back to where they had started in Pukekohe. Chandra took a turn for the worse.

This was how it was in the Patel family. Chandra sat in front of the TV watching Days of our Lives, The Young and the Restless, Emmerdale Farm, Coronation Street, It’s in the Bag. In fact, the TV was never turned off when she was awake. She did not go out to serve when the bell tinkled that her customers had entered the dairy.

Patel enrolled Nadine at Surrey Crescent School in Grey Lynn. He was such a busy man, with his business and a sick wife and a baby, that he did not notice that Nadine had become a defiant girl. If Chandra said anything, Nadine would shout back obscene and profane words and that as Chandra was a bloody foreigner, she knew nothing about being a Kiwi, a New Zealander.

“You go home to India.”

Nadine hated to have to babysit her little sister Smita.

“Piss off! Get off my face” she screamed at Smita.

There was not a moment of peace or quiet in the house. It was either Nadine and Chandra screaming at each other, or baby Smita crying.

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