I always took Mom’s lessons about sharing very seriously. So when my hair got infested with lice, I shared them with Maria, who was four years old. By the time a small town of lice were living on my head, a whole nation had grown in Maria’s lovely locks. Mom shampooed, combed, and hand-picked the nits carefully and finally advised me not to be so sharing.
But no matter how hard she tried, the lice kept coming back. They had developed a special love for my scalp. I didn’t mind them too much. Other than looking like a scratchy dog with fleas it was not so disgusting. And the best time was when Mom had to collect me from school because of the lousy lice. I would be celebrating while Mom would be fuming. I didn’t want to rub Mom the wrong way so I kept my delight to myself.
Mom would separate me from Maria who was more than eager to skip school too. I couldn’t help it when she pouted her lips, stared at me with longing eyes, and begged for a holiday from school. So I would rub my head with hers, and we would break into squeals and peals of laughter. The next morning, we had two itchy heads instead of one.
But I did help Mom clean Maria’s hair later - after all I loved her - especially when we discovered a gadget to pull the nits and lice out and collect it in a box. I only wondered who was so ingenious to invent something like that.