Monday, June 18, 2007

Auntie

She is a regular in the gym. She walks with a lazy step, does halfhearted aerobics, and barely moves on the bike. On the treadmill, her whole body heaves with an energy-less movement . All the exercises the trainer tells us to do are just not her type perhaps. I am poor at guessing people’s ages and therefore I had no idea about her age. She could be anywhere between 22-30 years. The day before yesterday, a little girl of about 9 years accompanied her. I presumed it was her daughter. While I was vehemently cycling away my cellulite, I tried to be social to her. Oh why couldn’t I control my big mouth… even if I thought it was her daughter, I should have shut my trap up, and kept on working out. But no, I had to say hi; I had to ask, “Is that your daughter?” Till now, I have not forgotten that flabbergasted look on her face. She responded with a cold “Nahi, she is my niece.” And I retraced my steps back to the treadmill with a sheepish, “oh.” I laughed to myself. How could I be such a fool not to notice that she was not more than 20 years old? But then I had never been in such a close proximity with her either.

I think I had ruined her day. She must have been thinking, “Do I look that old, that someone should mistake me for a mother of 9 year old?” She kept throwing sour glances to my side, perhaps thinking, “ Look at her, so fat, so heavy, and mistook me for a mother.” Breathlessly working on my aerobics, for a moment, I even toyed with the idea that if tomorrow Rasan went with me to the gym as she has been insisting on doing during these vacations, she might get back to me with , “Is that your grand daughter?” And I planned that I would say, “No, my grand daughter is slightly older” ;)

I put my mind back to burning my fat away and somehow the workout was over. We changed, came downstairs. She was walking with another mate of hers, and that child of course. It was hot. I felt that the child had perhaps come with her for an outing. Subjecting her to a long walk home would be a torture to her. I stopped my car, invited them to hop in. She sat with the child in the back seat. Her mate, a college girl, in the front passenger seat, started to talk, “ Are you an NRI?” I laughed, “No, I m a through and through desi.” She said, “Auntie your personality is like you came from abroad.” “No, I live here and work here,” I said, “Did you plan to make that child walk all the way home?” Now she spoke from the back seat, “ It was her choice. AUNTIE, where do u work?” I laughed to myself, here is your chance of revenge, baby. Anyways I said “I work with the technical education department.” “So AUNTIE, where do you live?” “AUNTIE isn’t that far? Do you come from that far? AUNTIE we have to go to Dandi Swami. You can drop us here.” I said, “I could have dropped you there too, but it’s a bit out of the way for me and my kids are waiting.” “Oh AUNTIE, how old are they.” I said, “My daughter is almost as old as your niece, and son a little younger.” And I stopped the car, they got down. She shut the door with, “Bye AUNTIE, thank you AUNTIE.” My kids' friends call me Auntie. So, I am used to being called one, but it was different here. I could feel the glee in her voice. I chuckled to myself. One of us went home happy at least. She had had her revenge. Now I can go to the gym guiltlessly, still see her around and smile to her.

Hisaab barabar !!!

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

a nice writeup. it is a part of our everyday happening. we all have a tendency to look into each other unconsciously.

Sidhusaaheb said...

I don't think calling you 'Auntie' would've made her feel too much better!

:D

On a more serious note, it's true that people have started putting on weight at a much younger age than they used to, till not so long ago.

Anonymous said...

Its better to move with age or age moves you ! so being a "Auntie" is not bad. After all Aunties are beautiful too !

Anonymous said...

i read ur blog again,it was a same good reading again, i must say, u r good at writing. i wanted to say much more,but i could not gather the appropriate words.
m.i.singh

Anonymous said...

nicely written as always..i believe putting on weight doesn't make anybody look older, it all depends on how u carry urself and the way you stay active, no one can ever..i wish, i was with you at tht moment, then it would have been real fun cos she could have gr8 pleasure of talking to two auntie's at the same time...
I like the conclusion of the article the best "hisaab barabar"...
keep it up.
GD.

Manpreet said...

Well Geena, you always manage to boost my morale as far as my weight is concerned, and I can depend on you for that always.

My MI, you better write more for me. Well thats how I am, who knows it better than you?

Sidhu, I can still see that gleam in her eyes even a month later. Since that day, dudh da jalya lassi nu wi fookaa maar maar ke pee reha hai. I ask the person's age first and foremost even before talking to her (only in the gym). But of course I ask in a very un-intrusive way.

Anonymous, your name is beautiful. Just the way aunties are beautiful. Why do you hide it then?


Thanks for all your comments.

AVNEET said...

nice peice of work as expected from u,i agree she did try to caqll u aunty for revenge but wudnt have done her any good...............so mast raho tusi ohde naal zayda maadi kitti sigi ohne tan haje kuch vi ni keha poor soul......but u knw never judge a book by its cover dats sooooooooo true

Majajn_jatti said...

deeds..u need to update ur posts..i am waiting for ur next post.

sukh

Majajn_jatti said...

will u write something so i can amuse myself..i am sick of looking at auntie:)

Manpreet said...

Ha, Ha ha Sukh, I can almost imagine you saying that in PUnjabi.... even I am sick of it now.
But dear, I will update it soon, for now Police is chasing me to finish my thesis and you know Punjab Police well, dont you? Je nai pata ta G nu puch laa.

Taran said...

Auntie article is amazing seems like you are getting the contaminated with Pannu blood...this is soo much like our family to bug people My Dad even thou a popular person socially was well known for sarcastic comments...you are completely one of us now...lol.

Taran Grewal.

Sifar said...

I am not that old, but coz I have some white hair in my beard, I have been called Uncle by ppl. who are not that younger than I am. Once I was taking my daughter (2yrs old) out for a walk and a girl/woman (may be around 20-22) asked me if she was my grand daughter. That makes my wife my daughter. Ha Ha Ha..... Well, I do not get bothered by such addresses as I believe some people are too poor in guessing age. And I cannot stop nature by covering up either, nor do I believe in it. You cannot cheat aging process. You can decieve some, but what about yourself. One cannot cheat with oneself.

Roop Rai said...

lol again!! ah where are you btw? is dandi swami in ludhiana?

u write so well. and u tell me that i write well. coming from you, that truly is a compliment i heartily value. :)

Pinku said...

hey !

reminds me of the aunty aunty ad for some hair dye that used to air long back...

why let such things worry you?

she can call u a granny it wont change an iota of who and what u are...an adorable human being with a lot of life and love to share...

hope ur kind gesture of dropping them home sinks into her thick head sometime.

philip9876 said...

am reminded of all the girls here in my office in singapore whom we call auntie. married or otherwise. some sort of a sadistic pleasure seeing them squirm when they are being addressed as auntie. the girls here take offence even when you address them as Maam.

In return, they call us uncle, grandpa etc...doesnt matter. i love calling them aunite. hehehe

~nm said...

This was one hilarious post!! Too good! :D

I love the wauy you write about such serious stuff and such light humour at the same time!

You are really good at it! Keep writing!

Mampi said...

Sifar-Well we sail in the same boat then.

Roops- :)

Pinks-I m sure she thought I was trying to save something of her day that I had spoiled.

Liju-I hate you.

~nm-thanks for dropping by. Love you for this.

Ritu said...

ROFL, this was priceless. Life is beautiful jab hisab kitab barabar karte hain, hai na?