In between a term paper thats yet to be written and a looming marriage of Rini, my cousin sister, I have more or less lost the conceptions of a time when I woke up at eight o'clock in the morning and started my day with a dose of soft rock and jiggly pop. The house is crowded with a bunch of OUTSIDERS from hell--- er, Hyderabad, and basically pulling all our body hairs on their ends just by being here. The Long-Distance Aunt, and her husband, and the husband's parents, and their three children, and their family friend (who has appeared into the scene because she claims she has never seen a Baangaali Wedding), who has two kids of her own ( the oldest being a year my junior) have suddenly taken over my room, my CDs, my BOOKS, my stuffs, and my life. The brats (aged 14, 16, 13, two belonging to the Aunt, one to her friend) are running around, disturbing my aura, disturbing my Mother, who seems to be at their beck and call 24-7, never begging for a raincheck. The worst bit is that, they constantly bugger my pets, (my Birds) who rebelled the first day by biting the 14 year old's hand, and resulting in eternal damnation in Cockateel Parties to come... and the older ones are the worst. Rinki, the Aunt's daughter has a crush on the Friend's boy who has developed a crush on me. Wild as this may seem, I have discovered that I am Crushable (i.e. I feel suitably crushed by this hulking crusher) and my woe lies in the fact that this has made the only person I like in that entire group 'jealous' and therefore I have lost the one friend I had in that Lot.
Anyway, the Grandparents are worse than mine. Those who does not know, I have a Grandma from each side of my parents remaining, (both my Gramps lucky enough to flee to eternal peace and quiet after 50 years of World War III) who compete with each other on being overactive. My affectionate name for both is Buri (old Woman), yet I favour my Dad's buri to my Mom's.
Well, Dad's buri is running like P.T. Usha at The Hyderabadi Gramps' favour. Mum swears they had something going when they were young (and still Do, from what I see) ... the Oldie has to lift one finger and his wish will be done. Incidentally, this old lech tried to feel me up when I touched his feet, hugging me tightly, and putting his right hand on my ass, gave it a tight squeeze. I've been running from the Lot ever since. And the Old Woman is no Worse. She is the step sister of my grandfather who sent her children over to Kolkata when they were young, and they stayed with us (all three of them), till they graduated. Needless to say, not a single penny came out of their parent's pocket. At this point, I admit I am being bitchy, but I hate it when these hypocrites arrive empty handed each year to our place, and leave with their hands full.
Back to the Buri. Its still Dad's Buri by the way. She's 77, though her vanity admits to only 75 of these years. Once a tyrant, age has reduced her to a general dogsbody around the house who is only too pleased to be running around trying to do everything. In this she generally succeeds, by the way. If there is anything she prefers more than being the doormat is being the saint. But she is even better at being Narad (Hindu Mythology sees this creature as being the instigator of major fights), watching with real pleasure as others cut each other up.
And then there was her Kaanchi Pyaanch (scissor twist action) where you fall into a Catch-22 situation. An Example at this point is called for.
Victim arrives late at night. Confronts Buri
Buri - Kothay gechhile??? (Where were you gone off to??)
Victim does not respond.
B- chup kore dariye achho je?? Mukhe ki katha shorchhe naa?? (Why are you standing dumbly? Are'nt words coming to your lips?)
Victim at this point begins to explain, but is cut off at the first three words....
B - Abaar Mukhe Mukhe Katha??? Choap!!! (You dare Talk Back?? SHUDDUP!!)
See?? Damned if you do. Damned if you don't.
And then there was that IPS Officer who came last Sunday for Coffee, tea and me... I mean, He came to look me over for a matrimonial match. Needless to say, it was a disaster. For once, I do not go for 30 year old KAKU types with Moustache and Paunch. For another, I hate being asked dumb questions by people who do not know what they are talking of.
An exerpt from the conversation.
Would-be - uhh... tumi Hamlet jano? (do you know Hamlet)
Panu (with extreme wariness) - hyaan... (yeees....)
Would-be (with all signs of apparent relief) - AMIO!!! (Me too)
At this point I must say that if this is the situation of Indian Police, No Wonder our Country is going to Hell.
The conversation ended after I calmly explained to him precisely why I could not marry him (and no, I did not have to mention his aforementioned vices at all) and that was that... One more day to live through.
But then I lament too much!! Trauma. Thanks Rimi for THIS.... its the least we can share.