Daddy watched the TV flicker with repugnance. His son too was not enjoying the meaningless scenes the flickering TV was producing and he grabbed the remote. But Daddy knew better, he knew the actual source of the trouble. Last night’s stormy wind must have tampered with the orientation of the cable dish outside. So he said,
“Sonny, the problem is not from here it’s from up there”, pointing to the dish outside. He added, “Get me a ladder and I’ll just re-orientate it”.
“No Dad; please let me go and do it myself!” Sonny said with pleading eyes, “You can stay here and let me know when it is clear”.
“Are you sure you can handle it?” Daddy asked; and before he could answer yes or no, Sonny stood up. Daddy really had no choice but to watch him trudge to the store to get a ladder. This young lad thinks he is older now; he frowns at being called a boy and believes he can do many things by himself.
“Okay son, if you say so, I’ll stay here… just be careful!” Daddy called after him.
* * * * * * *
Sonny found a number of ladders in the store. The wooden ones looked strong but they are quite heavy; the steel ones were of different lengths, weights and sizes. Without much contemplation he chose the most appealing, the standalone steel type, which is lighter and easier to prop. As he took it out, he noticed it was quite dusty. It has been a while since anybody used it.
“this ladder is probably faulty, maybe that’s why it’s been left to accumulate dust in the store.” he soliloquized as he propped it under the dish and noticed that the ladder was a bit shaky. But he didn’t have that kind of patience required to go get another one from the store. The program on the TV was not waiting for him either.
* * * * * * *
Just then, Daddy looked through the window and saw his son setting up the faulty ladder outside. He called out to him,
“Hey son, that ladder isn’t good; I think you should get another one”.
Pretending not to hear, Sonny climbed up the ladder stood confidently on the top, then bellowed back,
“no Dad, I think it’s good enough, please just watch the TV for me”.
“Trust me son, that ladder is faulty.”
“Don’t worry dad, I’ll be fine” He replied and signalled to his Dad to please mind the TV.
“Alright, have your way”. Daddy mumbled and turned to the TV. “I’ll mind the TV then”. The TV’s signal percentage started increasing and just when Dad thought to look outside to say its okay, He heard a crash and the steel ladder tumbled down.
“Oh! No”, He muttered and rushed outside.
Outside, the nuts, bolts and the rungs of the ladder that crashed was scattered all over the floor. It was a really horrible sight to behold. With his arms akimbo, Daddy looked at the floor and shook his head, but his son wasn’t on the floor. No, Sonny hung on tightly to the dish, his feet were dangling in the air. To passersby it was a funny sight; but to Daddy, it was a ugly sight to behold. Sonny had fear printed on his face in bold capital letters.
Any other person would be singing, “I told you so, I told you so, didn’t I?” but ‘The Love of a Father’ prevented Daddy from doing any such thing as he was rather preoccupied with thoughts of the fastest possible solution. The best solution would be to ask his son to jump into his arms.
“Son, the best thing to do right now is to let go of that dish, I’ll catch you”, Daddy said.
“Jump into my arms” Dad repeated.
“No dad! Go get another ladder instead.”
“You have to trust me son, that dish won’t hold you for long!” Dad encouraged.
“No dad, I don’t think it’s a good suggestion. I’ll hang on till you get another ladder” he replied. Just as those words left his mouth, the dish gave a creaking sound, as if trying to say, “I’m not sure I can hold you that long …else we’ll be going down together!”.
Not wanting to pull the dish out of its socket, He reduced his grip and his hand started to slide down slowly round the curve of the dish. Then his fear reminded him how far the floor was to his feet and he tightened his grip.
“Daddy, please help me!” He screamed.
“I’m sorry son, if you don’t let go of that dish, there’s no way I can help you.” Daddy replied. Perhaps if he sounded a little stricter, he could get him to let go.
“Oh, dad! I’m scared…” Sonny said, tears trickling down his face.
“Don’t be scared, I’m here for you.”
“what if …what if I break my leg”
“No, you won’t! If you let go now” It seems the ‘Strict Dad line’ wasn’t going to work on this boy, so Dad resolved to calmly convince him. He said, “Son, I’m your dad, you should know I love you and I would never do anything to hurt you, all I need you to do is trust me. Just trust and obey!”
“Dad…dad, what if…?”
“Don’t imagine anything, just trust me!” Dad pleaded. “Son, trust me. I am here for you.”
Sonny was caught in a dilemma of trusting either his father or his logical fear. Frightened, He couldn’t hold the water in his eyes and he burst into tears.
Just then, the dish gave øüt another creaking sound, also crying for freedom. There isn’t much time left. Sonny looked at his father with fear and looked at the floor. He had to make a decision quickly.
“Alright Dad, I want to trust you… please catch me!” he said, shutting his eyes tightly and releasing the dish.
Without further warning to daddy, he dropped down, expecting the worst to happen…