I realise that we women of today are really quite reserved. We simply don’t know how to express our love for our husbands.
I’ve come to this realisation after I heard Violetta express her love for Alfredo in one of my favourite scenes from La Traviata. Here’s a performance of it – “Amami Alfredo”
The last time many of us women spoke with such feeling to our families, was probably the time we had had enough – and decided that clothes left on the floor would be ‘left’ there. We would not put them in the wash and we would mop the floor around them, until assorted members of our family came to their senses and put them in their proper place – in the washing machine or the dirty clothes basket!
And I wonder, do we need to listen to Violetta and learn?
How would our husband’s feel, if after all these year of being married, we wives declared our love for them with such passion. Would they be thrilled, or would they rush us off to the nearest doctor, thinking we had a severe stomach ache…..??
- No one will be terribly overweight. They may eat out once in a way, when they need a break, but mostly, they’ll eat just as much as they need to and not a bit more
- Everyone will learn the true meaning of the first line of Serenity Prayer “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change” Your family will eventually learn to eat the few things you can cook, which are edible. After many years, they’ll have gone so used to your cooking, that they’ll have lowered their standards and will even insist that you’re the most amazing cook!
- A lot more gets done at home, because you have the time. Because you can cook what you find easy, because there will be no special requests – for snacks, deserts or just about anything else…if Dal (pulses) and Sabji (veggies) are all you can cook that’s edible, everyone will be thrilled to eat it everyday!
- You’re always smiling when you have guests over – because you can enjoy spending time with them…because everyone will be really thrilled if you don’t cook for them and will even try to hint broadly saying “Don’t worry to cook dear, let’s all go out for lunch. We know you’re busy and will just be tired if you have to do a lot of cooking!”
Some of my women friends who are amazing cooks and are now growing older, and feeling stuck. They’re getting older, and their priorities are changing, and they now want to spend less time managing the home and cooking, so that they get time for family members who are growing old and need their time.
They’re stuck, because other family member’s have stopped helping with the cooking, and guests have learned to expect amazing home made food from them…..because they’re just so good at it.
I’m saying ‘No’ to the requests I’ve had for cooking classes….
The truth is, all I have to do is ‘try’ to cook well and that’s enough for things to go terrible wrong….so I don’t think I can teach it. It’s just a natural talent!
She was the one you could go to…when you wanted to pick a fight with your neighbour without actually starting it yourself. A few well aimed barbs, whispered in her ear, and then, you just had to wait 10 minutes…it took just that long for your message to be delivered.
She was the one who came to tell you that your car had been stolen…just after you’d waved goodbye to the thief. Because you were so busy sitting in your balcony, having a good laugh with your family, that you thought a relative was waving to you and driving your car away.
She was the one who knew who visited whom, and what their business was. She had a job and she did it very enthusiastically, even though she was not paid a salary – “Keeping an eye on everyone around”.. mainly because, deep down inside, she cared.
And she kept us all safe. Because everyone knew there was always someone watching.
She was sometimes a nuisance, because she reported every minor transgression…Parents humoured her, and then had a good laugh when she left. They valued her, because she helped them keep track of what her kids were upto.
She’s got lost somehow, in the busy busy world of today, and I miss her.
Footnote : Some of my readers have asked who she is… I’ve used a lot of artistic license, here, to make a point.
She’s a little bit of you and a little bit of me – she’s the way we all used to be. We used to be friends with our neighbours, get in each other’s faces, rub each other up the wrong way, but when it counted, we all of us, were there for each other.
Mumbai’s changed so drastically…. and we’ve lost some of the good that we had.
My husband is in a state of shock – i did not know i could do this to him. It all started a couple of days ago, when i walked in and saw a picture on the computer screen.
A picture of this guy Luke. I saw it and immediately asked my husband if it was Luke Skywalker and he said it was. It’s funny, cos i just knew the name Luke Skywalker, but could not remember who he actually was. So, i thought for a moment and then it hit me. I said ‘It’s the Phantom isn’t it?’
My husband just looked at me blankly, so i elaborated ‘You know, the guy from the comic strip … The Ghost who walks?’
His blank look turned to shock and he just stared at me and i realised i’d got it wrong. After a moment of thought, it struck me that maybe Luke Skywalker is a character from ‘Star Wars’ and that he was the guy who turned into Darth Vader. I asked him if i’d got it right.
Shock turned into stunned disbelief!!
He’s had a couple of days to think and now realises he’s been married for over 15 years to a woman who does not know who Luke Skywalker is!!
You no longer feel like you’re just out of college
You are 20 kgs heavier than when you were 20 but you feel very slim
You will never have time to do all that you have to or want to
You are wise and you have given up trying – there’s a long long ‘To-do’ list which will never go away
The Loreal representative at the local mall tries to get you to buy more natural looking hair dye – even though you don’t dye your hair
Even the Bhaji-walla who used to call you Baby, then Didi, then Bhabhi, now calls you Auntie
For the non-Indian:
The Bhaji-walla is the vegetable vendor
They call all children Baba(boys) or Baby(girls), all young women Didi (elder sister), the not so young women Bhabhi(sister-in-law) and Auntie is just one step away from Nani – which means grandmother – a title you get when you look like, or are a senior citizen.
I have this fairly new and innovative way of organising my cupboard these days.
I used to be very neat – folded my things neatly and my cupboard looked really nice and tidy, and i continued like this when I started running my own home. But today, I know better and am very proud of my new system of arranging my cupboard and therefore feel the need to write about it.
The washing is always put away quick and I can find things easily. Of course there are days that I just keep all the washed clothes on the bed until they get magically put away, or I need to sleep and am forced to put them away myself.
This is my method :
- Use each shelf as a section – different sections for different types of clothes
- Throw all clothes in without folding
- Hang up Ironed clothes and keep clothes that need ironing in a particular place in your cupboard
- Once in a way when things start falling out, iron and re-organise
- Do not worry about how it looks as long as you can find things
Have a cup of chai and read a chapter of a book in the time that you save