Friday, 23 November 2007

Travails of a ‘phoren/faareen’ return


4 months back.

‘Which company are you going to work for?’

‘So you are going to London? Is it temporary or permanent?’

‘Have you bought warm clothes?’

‘Get yourself MTR ready-to-eat stuff. My husband’s brother’s wife’s sister’s son’s friend went to London last year and he faced a lot of problems due to food.’

‘Buy suitcases from ABC shop in Parel. They are the cheapest in the town.’

‘Get leather stuff from Dharavi, they are really cheap. My husband’s brother’s ………. got it from there.’


Now, during my week long vacation.

‘Hi, how are you?’

‘How’s London life?’

‘How’s the food there?’

‘How are you finding the work?’

‘How did you get one week leave within 4 months of joining?’

‘How much does it cost for a round trip? Which flights are the cheapest?’

‘You have become thinner, haven’t you?’

‘Do you cook yourself?’

‘What have you brought for your parents from London?’

The questions changed in 4 months, but they never change from people to people. It’s like they print a model questionnaire and circulate amongst themselves before they meet us. It’s unbelievable, how even the order of questions doesn’t change. Sometimes I doubt, whether they sell things like 'SSC: 21 Most Likely Question sets' for these sort of questions too. I should check Navneet publications' website now.

The most annoying part of all these questions and the conversations is their reference to the relatives or acquaintances staying or having travelled abroad. Somehow, this has become a status symbol nowadays. Stuff like 'I have my brother's wife's sister's husband's brother in US' have become commonplace, especially with Tam Brams.

The funnier thing is in matrimonial sites. I happened to see some profiles of Marwari girls for my friend. Some of the details in those profiles are:

- Bua settled in US with two kids

- Mother's brother (Mama) is a professor in UK (This is exactly how it was written in a profile)

This sounded ridiculous. There is no mention of any other mama or chacha, only those settled abroad are mentioned. If I am going to marry a girl, why would I be interested in the fact that the girl's bua is settled in US or UK or even Pluto?

Enough said. We'll discuss it later. One more family friend has turned up at my house. Have to by-heart my answers quickly.

Haha! Somehow this reminds me of our childhood days. Do you remember, when we were kids, every Tom, Dick and Hari we met used to rag us by asking us to recite rhymes, shlokas and stuff?

'What do you want to be when you grow up?'

'Tell me about Jack and Jill'

Questions like these were usually followed with a conditional bribe of a goodie. 'Only if you answer me, you'll get the chocolate, else Uncle will eat it himself'

Some things never change.


1 comment:

FirAbhi said...

So hows life dude[:p]?