My maid, God bless her, has one standard dialogue every time I am back from my travel. Every.Single.Time. I love her. She has been with me through the tough times. She takes care of me in her own way and treats me like her own daughter. So, what is that one line? “you have become more darker”. Neither of us (she or myself) are fair skinned. I might be a tad fairer than her. But still, we both are wheat colored. It doesn’t matter if I travel to a cold country or a tropical country or just a visit to my hometown for a fortnight. Just getting out of my home makes me look more tanned, according to her. Something in the water, she believes

She also had her views about how I am literally wasting away by going to gym. What is there to reduce? You are already thin! You will only look more sickly. That is what she used to say and still does. This was said today morning too. BMI, Visceral Fat, Muscle Mass, Body strength – all those doesn’t matter to her. She is quite lean and strong (doing household work definitely is the best exercise ever). I do like some meat in my bones, but I like being healthier more. If that makes me a little thinner than I was, then so be it. I am happy as long as I am healthy and am able to maintain it.

I usually hear it only from her. But this time after my latest trip and back, my brother who was on his regular business visit to Bangalore also commented on how much thinner I have become and I shouldn’t reduce more. 🙄 I  had to explain him about the BMI, Fat etc… to make him not say anything more. I don’t think he was convinced but at least that 10 min explanation stopped him from saying anything further. Yesterday when I had been to office (after quite a while actually) I saw this colleague of mine and she looked me up and down and said, you look different. The look on her face was that of disappointment more than surprise. I told her that I had been working out and could be the result of that. She replied not just that… you look more tanned…why are you getting more tanned when you are already darker??? As if I am going to tanning salons for that purpose. I told her, it’s just the water. Obviously she didn’t get that inside joke.

When I was slightly obese, no one knew because of my extremely shapeless clothes. Now that my clothes size has reduced too, I get the odd comment from people that I have become thinner. I am yet to hear from someone that I have become fitter. I know I won’t be hearing that any time soon. But I am surprised at the tanning comment. I hardly wear any sunscreen when I go out, irrespective of the place or heat. I am used to the heat and sweat over here. So I usually don’t use any sunscreen (that is an additional accessory to carry too… urgh!) How can they tell the difference between dark skin and delta-dark skin (delta here means a very minute difference). I wonder what else is in store for me after my next travel or may be another month of gym.