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Saturday, July 30, 2011

Undisclosed Utilities !

On a particularly boring weekend, I was alone at home wondering what to do. Time seemed to stagnate every passing second. Suddenly I noticed this wall in the living room which looked all plain and blank (ready to be spoilt by me) and I decided to give it a new look. I opened my cupboard and took the envelope holder which my Mom gifted me…It is a beautiful jute piece which had pockets that can hold envelopes and post cards (exactly like the one in the picture ). When we were younger, my Mom used to put the day’s mail and post cards in it.
 I hung the envelope holder on the wall, which now looked full and aesthetic, and lay back in the bliss of having done something productive.

        However, my tech savvy husband has an aversion to wall hangings or any home décor, like I have to his endless cables and wires which runs haywire on the floor and ceiling. After reaching home, he switched on his denial mode when he saw it.

He: Whats this ?

Me: Envelope Holder .

He: “Envelope!!” he exclaims, as if I told a new word. “Soldiers at Kargil have 3G phones!”

Me: You can put other stuff too.

He: ‘Like what !!!”

Me: **cold stare**

Conversation ends, and the outcome is settled. The husband dislikes, but the envelope holder stays. (Cold stares bring screeching halts to any conversation, good or bad. It is very handy in such situations.)

Few weeks later, on a similar boring day, I was at home lazing, and hubby was out to settle bills. ( " bill payment " reminds me of Papa, as he used to say, that it had actually  turned out to be the purpose of his existence over the years :D )

Me: Hello?

He: Hey I am at Airtel office…Can you check this month’s copy of landline bill and call me back..?

I searched every nook and corner of the house, but in vain. The mobile rings again.

He: Found?

Me: No ...

He: Check that envelope holder of yours…I keep airtel bills there…

Me: !!!! Oh, I see !

The shy grin at the other end would've made an excellent Kodak moment :)

Thursday, July 21, 2011

A 'fishy' collision...

It was the last working day of the week. Mom and I were waiting for hubby to come home, after the grocery purchase for the weekend. Papa had already left to India.

10:30 p.m. 
Me: Hello? Where are you?
Hubby: At the parking lot… will be there in five minutes.

So Mom and I arranged plates and got ready for dinner… Meanwhile she also diplomatically made space in the fridge for the items that were on the way. We switched on the TV, but my mind was programmed for the five minute wait, the noise the entrance door makes when someone enters the building, followed by the ring of the bell at our apartment.

5..10…15 minutes passed, and the bell did not ring.

I optimistically expected a traffic block, which could scarcely happen at this part of the town especially at this hour of the day. I took my mobile and dialed him on the speed dial. The call opened initially to the noise of a crowd, followed by his voice.

“Hello..Actually there is a small problem…I met with an accident here…a guy on a two wheeler was hit by our car and he is being taken to the hospital…I am surrounded by his people here…I will call you back”.

The statement sent chill waves down my spine. I ran to my Mom and broke the news to her.
We’re just two ladies at home. We do not know what exactly happened. It is a country where punishments are quick and extreme for even trivial faults. We are expats here. We do not have lawyers or support of any kind. I broke down emotionally, as pessimistic thoughts clouded my head..which also froze my ability to think. I took my mobile and rang up a colleague. He did not answer the call…it was 11 pm already. I rang up another colleague who said that he was already at the accident site, but also added that he couldn’t make out anything.

I was convinced that someone died and that we were going to face a criminal lawsuit. Tears started gushing out of my eyes... followed by persistent whining and melodrama. My Mom, who couldn’t stand me crying, took great effort to hide her own and consoled me despite the mountain of anxiety burning within her. Soon I got calls from various friends of his, who pacified me with updates every now and then. The latest one being, that the victim had come from the wrong direction, on a one-way road and the mistake was all his. He was not injured and was discharged from hospital after dressing up minor wounds. Hubby was in the police station now, where the police tried to document an FIR.  Although this much information was enough to stop the tears, I couldn’t get back to my normal self unless and until I could see and talk to him. The FIR could take some time, I was told.
 Mom and I thanked the Almighty for being there when the world was miles away.

Soon, there was a knock at our door. I rushed to open it... it was a friend, and he held out a small plastic bag to me, and said : “ Hi Anita…I just came from the police station…saw him …he is fine… by the way this is some fresh fish…he said , if he has to stay longer at the police station, it will become stale, and you might be pissed”

What do I say to that?    "Thank you" ????!!!!!!
His friends must now have built an excellent image about me... the wife who would be worried about the fish going stale when husband is at the police station. Sigh..!.

Anyway, hubby was back home in another hour, by God’s grace, and I quietly explained to him that come what may, I just can’t do without fresh fish :-D

Friday, July 15, 2011

Being me !

I was the youngest in my family for several years, until my cousin was born. Its not a cakewalk, my friend. Yes, I was pampered to bits…but it all came at a cost !!!. Here are a few prices I pay to this day, for the unintentional fault of being the youngest and these might be true for you if you’ve been there too.

You may be a he or a she, but your family refers to you as ‘It’.

They will take you for movies and picnic, but never will the choice of movie/picnic spot be yours.

You are shushed if you try to speak when they are discussing something.

If at all you speak, they will find grammatical mistakes in your sentence, or simply laugh for reasons only known to them.

If you make the mistake of: singing a song by the wrong lyrics/writing poetry/speak English in your younger years, it will be remembered by them all your life and will be recited even in front of your spouse.

As you grow older, you grow younger in their heads.

When you complete high school / degree / graduation, they will wonder how it even happened! (Your grades wouldn’t matter)

To you they increasingly appear to be silly people who do not understand the concept that once toddlers will not be toddlers forever.

At your marriage they will laugh and pity your spouse.

They will ensure that the spouse also doesn’t take you seriously.

After your marriage they will continue to make decisions.

You will be shushed in front of your spouse.

They will make long distance calls to your hostel/workplace and wind up asking you to check whether the front door is properly locked, and not to play with power plugs.

You will not be entrusted with money, gold, keys to home/car, umbrella, purse …in short, any valuables.

Whenever they get a chance to book tickets for you, they think aloud that it seemed like yesterday they booked a half ticket for you. Every time.

If at all you make a serious statement at any point in your life, they will annoy you further by a melodramatic reminiscence of the frock and shoes you wore at age 3, which sits in the in the Godrej wardrobe of your ancestral home.

They will make you feel that you did a terrible crime by growing up.

 ;-) Here is to all my folks for whom I am still the little girl in a pink frock!  Yes, you are welcome.

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