Archive for the Beginnings Category

Daily Cereal: Beginnings – Ep 27.

Posted in Beginnings, Daily Cereal, My work on 13 April, 2007 by sonal

Previously on Daily Cereal, a whole heap of stuff happened … but in a nutshell: Maya came home with an axe, a policewoman came to the door, Nic did what he was told not to do and ended up handcuffed, knocked out, in the boot of car, in Wrights Hill, in a cemetery and now, finally, standing on Park Road, Miramar, Nic sees his mum drive off home to the house with no door, a bloody axe and a pile of dodgy evidence …

Once upon a time, not so long ago, a beautiful woman called … no. It would be unfair to unveil the mystery of Nic and Maya’s mum. Or rather Mum. She has mastered the fine art of anonymity, it would be cruel to break that now … and I don’t want to get on her bad side.

She turns into her home street, seat belt buckled, indicator blinking a full three seconds before she makes her turn.

She drives past a police vehicle, inside at the wheel sits a sleeping Jenn. Nic and Maya’s Mum smiles (you however scratch your head, click over to the Daily Cereal tab and go back a few episodes, but didn’t she …).

She pulls her car into the driveway and climbs out. She walks up the path. The street is quiet, the door is rightfully back in it’s frame, the sari assassins are efficient.

She opens the door of her home and goes in. She walks around the house, and into the garden. Sitting in the grass is an axe, dirty with age and stained with tree sap, but nothing more, she goes upstairs into her children’s rooms – shaking her head at the mess … She goes into her room, it is immaculate. She picks up a few photos from the table and puts them into her handbag. She goes down stairs and sets up an ironing board near the curtains in the lounge and starts to iron a couple of Maya’s shirts. Half way through she stops, leaves the iron on the shirt and steps out of the room. She walks out of the front door, making sure she still had her handbag and keys. She checks the time, climbs into her car and drives off.


Jenn wakes up. Her head aches something rotten. What happened last night? She tries to recall … her memory tells her that she was sent her after a neighbour complained about a … intruder? That’s right, reckoned it was an axe or something silly like that … Then how did she fall … she better call in. She picks up her RT, which looks a bit shinier than normal and calls in.

Static Voice: Where the hell have you been?

Jenn: Eh?

Static Voice: Get back here now!

Jenn: I just, I mean, I don’t know …

Static Voice: You don’t know, you’ve woken up in your car with everything on you and you don’t know? How about I tell that to the officers I have looking for you!

Jenn: Er …

Static Voice: In my office now!

Jenn gives an angry look to the RT and then gives it the fingers. She starts up her car, indicates, and pulls away from the kerb.

That street in Miramar, the one of your choosing (but ultimately one off Park Road), is still. A couple of kids are cycling down, someone is delivering The Wellingtonian and the odd car drives through taking a short cut to some where else.

And very faintly, way in the background of all other daily noises, there’s a sound of a smoke alarm.

© Sonal Patel, 2007.


Daily Cereal: Beginnings – Ep 26.

Posted in Beginnings, Daily Cereal, My work on 4 April, 2007 by sonal

Nic is in the car with his mum. Alone. Behind them, in two other cars, are the police officers, unconscious and watched over by members of the deadly Sari Assassins.

Nic: What are you going to do to me?

Mum: Send you away.

Nic: Where?

Mum: You’ve always wanted to do your O.E. right?

Nic: No, that’s Maya.

Mum: What if I pay for it?

Nic: Do I have a choice?

Mum: You’ll always have a choice darling.

Nic: Will I be able to come back?

Mum: In time.

Nic: What if I don’t go?

His mum takes a deep breath.

Nic: Don’t answer.


Mum: I’m sorry darling, I really am.

Nic: Yeah.


Nic: Do I get to pick where I go?

Mum: Of course.

Nic: And will you keep in touch?

Mum: I’ll ring you everyday. And you will come home.

Nic: When you’re ready?

Mum: No, when you’re ready.

They continue the ride in silence.

Nic’s mum spots the abandoned police car and pulls over. The cars behind her pull over too.

The women get out of the cars. They move the policemen back into the police car.

Mum: We need alcohol.

Hema: Madhu has a bottle.

Madhu: No I don’t.

Hema: Yes you do.

Madhu: You must be mistaken.

Hema: You’re always taking a swig.

Madhu: That’s medicine … for my angina …

Mum: Madhumashi, we need to use your medicine.

Madhu: Oh no, you shouldn’t share around prescriptions.

Mum: I will buy you some more.

Madhu: No … Black label?

Mum: Ok.

Madhu: Five?

Mum: Three.

Madhu: Here you go.

Madhu releases the bottle to Nic’s mum. Nic’s mum throws about some alcohol in the car and onto the officers’ clothes. She takes out her cell phone.

Hema: You could put them in a compromising sexual position, with a lady perhaps? I’d be happy to volunteer.

Mum: Mashi, this is the police, no one will find out for years.

She dials a number.

Mum: Hi there, um I’ve just come across a police car in Miramar and the policemen in it seem to be drunk. Yes, he’s at the wheel. Park Road, towards California Garden Centre. Yes. Yes. Sure thing. Thank you.

She hangs up.

Nic: Let me guess, Dominion Post?

Mum: If you want something done.

She takes what’s left in the bottle and splatters some liquid on their lips. She puts the bottle in the slightly younger police officer’s hands.

The women pile into their cars.

Mum: Betta, you go with them.

She takes his face in both her hands and plants a kiss on his forehead. She smooths his here and gives him a warm smile. She turns away, gets in her car and drives towards home.

His aunties gently guide him to a car. Belt him in and drive out of Miramar.

Is it the end? Almost, but not quite. There’s still a bit of business to go, but it will have to wait for next week.

Easter Eggs from tomorrow.

© Sonal Patel, 2007

Daily Cereal: Beginnings – Ep 25.

Posted in Beginnings, Daily Cereal, My work on 4 April, 2007 by sonal

2 police officers vs. 20 cut-throat sari clad assassins, who do you think will win?

Well it’s not going to go like that. Why? Well, let’s take away the fact that these women are assassins. What does that leave us with? 20 very angry Indian women …


Officer 1: Ladies, please stop what you are doing.

Nic and Maya’s mum gives him a warm smile.

Mum: And what are we doing officer?

The ever so slightly senior of the two police officers hesitates a little.

Officer 1: …

Officer 2 (leans over to Officer 1 and whispers): You know, she might have a point.

But before the smidgen of a bit senior of the officers can answer Madhuri smacks him over the back of his head with her walking stick.

Officer 1: Ow, what are you doing?

Madhuri: You just left me in the car, what kind of service do you call that?

Officer 1: Will you stop doing that, please?

She gives him a final crack and knocks him unconscious.

Officer 2: Oh my god. You can’t do that!

Mum: Oh god. Madhumashi, what did you do that for?

Madhuri: He lied to us, he said he was showing us the way, not chasing you. I’m fixing things.

The slightly younger (although he would like to think it was more than that) police officer grabs Madhuri’s arm.

Officer 2: You are under arrest for assault (against a police officer) …

Mum: Maniben.

Nic and Maya’s Manimashi hands blur with motion and in the blink of an eye the other police officer is down.

Mum: We all ready had it under control Mashi.

Madhuri: What control?

Mum: It would have been fine. You didn’t have to hit him.

Madhuri: Of course I did, he knows, he must be destroyed.

Mum: We are not destroying police men.

Madhuri: Police were never involved in my day.

Mum: Yes Mashi, I’m sure it was fine in your day and then the British invaded.

Maya: Can we just sort this out, please?


Maya: Sorry Mum.

Mum: You, go with Gangamashi to the safe house and wait there.

Maya: Yes, Mum.

Mum: And you.

Nic: Yes Mum?

Mum: You’re coming with me. Don’t look at me like that, I’m your mother, I’m not going to hurt you. Again. Maniben, Neena,
you take these two and follow me.

Nic: Where are we going?

Mum: Home.

© Sonal Patel, 2007

Daily Cereal: Beginnings – Ep 24.

Posted in Beginnings, Daily Cereal, My work on 2 April, 2007 by sonal

Imagine a car chase across the streets of Wellington …

Ok, forget what you’ve seen on the telly or in the movies – imagine a car chase in the real Wellington. During the lunch peak hour. With police and without a police car.

Yes, that sort of car chase. A very, very slow one.

Up somewhere at the back of Karori Cemetery the convoy has come to halt. The women get out of the car, their saris flapping in the breeze.

The women crowd around the leading car as Nic is gently unbuckled and pulled out of the car. They carry him down the hill and place him on one of the old, abandoned, grassy plots.

On Kelburn Parade a car, containing two police officers, sits behind a bus.

Officer 1: Oh, c’mon! Pull over!

Nic moves his head a little. It hurts. He opens his eyes and sees the smiling faces of his aunties. Through the circle appear his mum and Maya. He sits up with a jolt.

Mum: Don’t worry betta. Relax.

Nic: Wha-wha-what’s going on?

He looks around and notices where they are.

Maya: We’ve got a confession to make.

Nic: Where did, how did, why are they …

Maya sits on the ground next to Nic and puts her arm around him.

Maya: Nikulbhai, I’m sorry. I’m really sorry. If I had been a bit more careful …

Mum: Organised.

Maya: Fine, organised …

Mum: Betta, if your sister hadn’t put her social life before the family business then we wouldn’t be in this mess.

Nic: Family business? What family business?

Mum: This family business.

Nic looks at the smiling aunties.

Nic: And that would be?

Mum: The women around you are some of the finest minds and the most discreet assassins in the country.

Nic: What?

Maya: Manimashi …

Manimashi waves.

Maya: Is a Tai Chi master.


Maya: Speed it up in your head …

Nic: Oh.

Maya: Neenamashi is fantastic at poisons.

Mum: Well she was Chemistry Professor at the University of Mumbai.

Neena: Bombay back then.

Nic: I didn’t know that.

Maya: That’s our advantage, no one does. No one suspects an old Indian woman in a sari.

Nic: You’re not old.

Mum: Maya’s an apprentice.

Nic: Maya get’s everything.

Maya: No I don’t, you got a car.

Nic: On the condition that I drive you around everywhere.

Maya: And you got to go out later than me.

Nic: When I didn’t have to baby sit you.

Mum: Kids!

Nic and Maya: Sorry Mum.

Mum: Nikul, betta, while your sister has obviously made a mess of our operations, you’ve become a liability.

Maya: It means you have to go.

A car screeches to a halt up on the road. Ganga’s voice rings out …

Ganga: Hey, where do you think you’re going?

Officer 1: Ladies please stop what you are doing …

Maya and Nic’s mum gives a signal to the assembled women.

Oh don’t worry, I’m not going to give you a martial arts show down between two police officers and the finest sari assassins the world has ever seen.

I’m not that tacky.


© Sonal Patel, 2007

Daily Cereal: Beginnings – Ep 23.

Posted in Beginnings, Daily Cereal, My work on 2 April, 2007 by sonal

Last time on Daily Cereal, Nic was being whisked away in a car by his mother, his sister and a convoy of Indian women.

Meanwhile … the two officers are also in the back seat of a car. The slightly senior officer is wedged between his colleague and a very slobbery dog.

Driver: And I said to him, there’s no fucking way I’m paying that, I’m not in the residential zone.

Officer 2: We don’t deal with parking.

Driver: I was clearly outside the white box.

Officer 2: It’s a council thing.

A convoy passes them on Ruahine Street …

Driver: And he said, too late I’ve printed it.

Officer 2: They actually contract it out.

Driver: I know you guys are working on commission, you’ve got this quota thing, my friend (told me) …

Officer 1: Stop.

Driver: I thought you said Miramar?

Officer 1: Stop the car now.

Officer 2: What?

Officer 1: I said stop the fucking car!

The car comes to a sudden stop and of course as everyone is wearing a seat belt (yes, including the dog) all are safe.

Officer 1: Get out of the car.

Driver: Don’t I get anything?

Officer 1: Our eternal gratitude and thanks.

Driver: You fucking (cheap shit) …

The officers cross to the other side of the road.

Officer 2: What are you doing?

Somewhere in Kilbirnie …

Madhuri: Are you sure you know where you’re going?

Ganga: Stop worrying, we’ll get there fine.

Madhuri: Oh? When was the last time you drove outside of Kilbirnie?

Ganga: I go outside of Kilbirnie all of the time.

Madhuri: Where?

Ganga: Newtown.

Madhuri: We’re going to Karori. Do you know how to get to Karori?

Ganga: Yes …

Madhuri: Do you know you’ll have to go through town to get there?

Ganga: Fine, I’ll ask those policemen.

She pulls over.

Madhuri: Why has he got his thumb out like that?

Ganga: I don’t know. Um, excuse me how do I get to Karori.

The officers, relieved to be finally picked up, climb into the back seat of the car.

Officer 1: Thank you so much ma’am we’re very, very grateful.

Ganga: Eh? What are you doing?

Officer 1: I thought (you were) …

Ganga: I just want to go to Karori.

Officer 1: Yes, and we’re here to help you.

Madhuri: By jumping in the car?

Officer 1: Ah, yes. It’s a new service. We take you to your destination.

Ganga: Oh that’s nice.

Madhuri: Isn’t it a bit odd?

Ganga: No, it’s nice.

Madhuri: It’s odd.

Officer 1: I can drive if you like.

Ganga: Oh, I don’t (know about that) …

Madhuri: Ok, that sounds good.

Ganga: I …

Madhuri: Go on, swap seats.

Officer 2: Where in Karori would you ladies like to go?

Madhuri: Cemetery please, and hop to it!

Officer 2: Visiting friends past?

Ganga: No, we’re taking my nephew there.

Officer 2: Oh I’m so sorry.

Ganga: Oh no, he’s fine.

Officer 1: Are you travelling on your own?

Madhuri: We wouldn’t be if some one could drive faster.

Officer 1: So you were following other cars?

Madhuri: Were.

Ganga: I ran out of petrol, what did you want me to do?

Madhuri: Not let you car run empty!

Officer 1: Karori Cemetary?

Madhuri: And I said hop to it! What kind of driving do you call this?

Could it all be, finally, coming together? We live in hope …

© Sonal Patel, 2007

Daily Cereal: Beginnings – Ep 22.

Posted in Beginnings, Daily Cereal, My work on 1 April, 2007 by sonal

Yesterday on Daily Cereal, Nic’s Mum surprised him at home and then knocked him unconscious. Do you need to know more than that?

See Nic unconscious.

See Maya and her mum carry him to the car.

See Nic in the back seat of the car (seat belt on), still unconscious, with two older Indian women on either side of him. In the front of his car is Maya and her Mum.

Maya: Mum. Mum, you know you can go faster.

Mum: I’m not going to risk it.

Maya: Mum it’s a 70 K zone, you’re doing … 65. Speed it up a little.

Mum: We’re fine.

Maya: We’re not, we’re going to get noticed.

Mum: If I go any faster Manimashi won’t be able to keep up.

Maya looks in the rear view mirror. Her Mashi waves at her. Behind her there is a small convoy of cars.

Maya: I can’t see Gangamashi’s car.

Mum: She probably stopped off for petrol, don’t worry she’ll catch up soon.

Where are all these women going? And why the short post? Ah some things will be revealed tomorrow …

© Sonal Patel, 2007

Daily Cereal: Beginnings – Ep 21.

Posted in Beginnings, Daily Cereal, My work on 31 March, 2007 by sonal

In the last Daily Cereal the police officers were on a walk, Nic was on the run, and sirens were coming up behind him … come to think of it, they were beside him … No wait, they’ve gone past …

Nic looks at the police car speeding away from him … he looks back at the car he took. He shrugs his shoulders and heads back to the car. Another police car comes screaming around the corner. Nic dives in the bushes. The car continues past him.

Nic picks himself up out of the bushes. Heads towards the police car. Waits. Quickly runs to the driver’s side and drives home. He parks off Park Road a couple of streets down along from his house. He climbs out of the car.

Voice: Nikul, Nikul, is that you?

Nic freezes … shit … Nic turns … it’s his Aunt.

Nic: Hi Kaki.

Aunt: Hello betta, it’s been so long since we’ve seen you.

Nic: Yes Kaki.

Aunt: Have you forgotten me?

Nic: No Kaki, I’ve just been busy.

Aunt: Busy, yes you and Maya, always so busy.

Nic: Yes Kaki.

Aunt: When are you going to come and visit me?

Nic: Um, soon. Kaki, look I’ve actually (got to go) …

Aunt: Yes, I’m sure you have to, busy policeman like you. How’s mummy?

Nic: She’s fine Kaki, now I’ve really (got to go) …

Aunt: Has her bronchitis cleared up?

Nic: I don’t (know) …

Aunt: All that traveling she does, can’t be good for her.

Nic: I have to go. I’m really sorry but I have to go …

Nic walks away.

Aunt: Ok my big policeman-nephew, you’ll come for dinner next week yes?

But Nic has already gone. He turns the final street to his house and sees a lot of cars near his place.

They’re not police cars …

He steps onto the front door and from the living rooms comes his mother.

Mum: What have you done to my house?

Nic: Mum! When did you get home?

Mum: Why didn’t you ring me?

Nic: I … I … how did you get here so fast?

Mum: Maya managed to ring me and tell that she had been arrested, why haven’t you?

Nic: Mum, I just didn’t get around to it honest.

Mum: I’ll sort you out later. Pick up this door.

Nic: But it’s really heavy. I don’t think we’re meant to touch anything until the police (have been through).

Mum: Pick up this door.

Nic: Yes mum.

He slowly lifts up the door, his mum comes up behind him and knocks him over the head with the Jenn’s truncheon. Nic falls to the floor unconscious. Maya comes out of the kitchen.

Maya: Jeez Mum, that was a bit hard don’t you think?

Mum: It’ll be good for him.

Surprised? I certainly am! What’s going on? Find out tomorrow.

© Sonal Patel, 2007