It was SRK’s birthday and I was dreaming of him. I thought he was ringing my doorbell and wanted to come to the house with a huge bouquet of red roses. I got up with a start. Unfortunately, it was the alarm bell. Gosh, I had overslept!
I hurriedly got up and ran to the kitchen to make breakfast for my two children. I woke up my husband and begged and pleaded with him to take the children to school. The maid had not turned up, so quickly I rustled up something for the children’s tiffin with my limited culinary skills. The kids left, but not before my elder son hurriedly said, “Mom, just sign this!” It was a gol anda in the maths weekly tests, but there was no time to reprimand him. So I just kept quiet and signed his notebook.
The maid is late
Finally the maid arrived, just late by two hours.
“What happened?” I asked.
“HE is here,” she said and blushed.
The HE is my maid’s husband, who already has a wife and children. But when he runs out of money he arrives at my maid’s house and stays for a week and sweet talks to her, pampers her, takes her money and then disappears.
Mercifully my maid is efficient and started cooking lunch. I told her to make fruit custard. She said coyly, “I am making some extra. I want to take it for HIM. HE loves it.” She did not feel the need to ask me, just to inform me, but since she was good to me, I did not mind it.
I had the day to myself. The kids had sports practice and after that they had a sleepover at my mother’s house. I decided to go to the beauty parlour.
I wanted a manicure, not body shaming
“Ma’am, apka skin bahut dry hai. Please get a facial. Aur pigmentation kitna hai. Please do something.”
“I just wanted a manicure and pedicure,” I said frostily, feeling inferior and ugly. But I tried to hide my feelings with a stiff demeanour. The manicurist cut my cuticles so badly that they were smarting and kept telling me to get an ice cream pedicure done. I walked out, but not before she conned me into buying some really expensive conditioner.
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I was looking forward to a long afternoon at home alternating between the breezy romance I was reading and the Pakistani serial I was watching on my iPad. The bell rang and it was my husband’s aunt.
Then his aunt dropped in
“Beta, I had gone to a temple nearby. I thought I would drop in for a cup of tea.”
“Yes,” I sighed.
“Beta, has the maid not been coming?”
“Why?” I asked.
“Too much dust in the house,” and she sneezed.
“Can I kill her and flush her body?” I wondered.
“I will tell the maid to be more particular,” I said, saccharine sweet.
“You know how I like my tea?” she asked.
“With poison,” I thought.
“Just add a pinch of cardamom powder and don’t forget to put some malai on my tea and put three spoons of sugar.”
“Malai and so much sugar.” I looked at the aunt. Her skin was glowing, she was sprightly and her hair was thick and luxuriant. “Some people have all the luck,” I thought, touching my thinning hair gingerly. After the chai and putting me down and criticising me and feeling bad for her nephew, the aunt left.
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Some juicy gossip
We had some guests for dinner. My husband insisted I take out the Wedgwood dinner set. They were his business guests. The dinner went off well and I thought I would wash the plates myself and prove to be a good housewife.
While I was doing the needful, my friend called up and said there was hot gossip.
“What?” I asked.
“I saw A checking into a hotel in the afternoon with her husband.”
“That’s not gossip,” I said.
“It is,” she insisted. “Why would anyone check into a hotel with their husband?”
“Maybe it’s their wedding anniversary,” I laughed.
“I think they want a threesome.”
“Why do you say that?”
“A is a rich hag married to a rich man, so to spice up their marriage or probably to practice BDSM.”
My eyes widened. My phone was between my ear and neck. It was slipping and to stop it from falling into the soapsuds, I clutched it and in the bargain broke two plates.
Gosh, what had I done?
He heard everything
I was planning to keep quiet, but my servant went and told my husband what I had done. My husband came to the kitchen.
I smilingly told my husband I would repair it with Fevicol and the plate will have lived. Like how I have savoured life with its sadness and laughter. “I have embraced it all, that’s why I have crow’s feet, laughter lines and stretch marks. These two plates will be like me, alive, in spite of cracks.”
“I was listening to your conversation,” my husband said.
“Please,” my husband laughed, “stop conjecturing about others’ sex lives. Let’s think of our own.”
And he held my hand and I clutched it back tightly, looking into his eyes as he looked into mine. The day, I knew, would have a perfect end!