Aunty or Uncle

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One of the Ships we were on we had a particularly long sailing  from Houston in US to a Trieste in Italy, which meant crossing the Atlantic and then a couple of days more till we reached Trieste. It was about 14 days and to our bad luck the terminal where we were berthed didn’t allow shore leave. Of course not being able to ashore was a bit disappointing but there was not much we could do. Me and Ria my daughter who was three at that time decided to go and watch a movie in the Ship’s smoke room ( a common room with TV etc for the Ships crew to unwind). We were sitting there when some of our ships crew  members entered the room with the crew of the ship berthed next to us to exchange movies. They were going about thier business when suddenly Ria comes to me and says “Mom I want to go to Aunty” and I was a bit taken aback since i was the only lady onboard, so..which aunty was she taking about??? I said “what baby” thinking I had misheard something. She said  again “mom I want to go to aunty” and she pointed towards the crew. That’s when I saw one of the Philipinoes who had come from the other ship had long hair up to his waist and from what my lil three year old knew only women had long hair.Oh God it was so difficult for me to control my laughter but it was even more difficult to control Ria who was hell bent on going to AUNTY.( Mostly in india every lady is an aunty and all men are uncles for kids) I had to hold here while she kept saying Aunty, aunty calling that guy and was trying to go towards him . I somehow managed to take her away from there with the promise of getting ice cream from the galley.  For quite some time after that she kept asking me where aunty had gone…..poor girl.  I realised she was starved for company and made sure that my husband somehow arranged for us to go ashore the next day. We had a wonderful couple of days in Trieste and I made sure I took her to a park where she had a great time amidst the AUNTIES and their kids.

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