better choices

” Your happiness is incumbent upon you.” Michael Barked.

In retrospect, I didn’t carry my responsibilities in a proper way. I remember when Thubita’s brass and ill-bread daughter banged my 4-5-month old daughter’s head on the Chauki then she with Phabbir and his mother, broke into a cackle. I did try to laugh. My daughter was wailing and howling and squirming with pain and her father Phabbir was unable to hold his giggles.

Thubita always kept up with Joneses and tried to sound as nice as she could. She didn’t like “Bihari Bahus” of large families. Having considered the basic sense of dressing or how to talk or what to say etc they just didn’t measure up. It really seemed awful that they didn’t beg money from their parents. What she hated most that some men take care of their children and wives. How despicable! Such lofty were her thoughts! And they rarely asked for her permission as to what to speak. Such impertinence! I am not quite sure if they did all that dramas that Phabbir did every day.

“You know when Jatan was married, his wife was no different than a maid. I couldn’t tell them apart.”

“Isn’t she just? As black as coal and no sense of anything.” Phabbir croaked.

But Jatan’s wife was her gossip partner! She was the one who didn’t leave a stone unturned to convince me that it’s the custom here to treat Bahus poorly.

“In my opinion, she’s got good features.” I just ejaculated

” Oh yes. Her features are perfect but…” the switch had flipped. With a stroke of luck I was saved!

Thubita Rattled on and on about Puttu, Pramod Bhaiya’s wife, Ruhela and Tinky. But I think they all were similar. Just like her.

“It’s just as well she came to study here. She was a hopeless case. Even here not everyone is interested in studies. Tiddi and Booby Pandey are the case in point.”

Thubita dismayed that she didn’t complete her Ph D in English Literature owing to her father’s untimely demise. However, her mother believed that he was too old to..

As the owner of Aukat Ministry, Thubita and Phabbir cracked some hilarious jokes but my head was rattling as they rattled on. Colours, I had already seen and I considered they all were quite in harmony with each other while I struck a discordant note.

Someone informed us that Pramod Bhaiya had come.

They all bounded down the stairs. Suddenly Thubita was making all the right noises about all of them including Ruhela and I was left muzzy-headed, trying to figure it all out.

The question was, weren’t they always aware of Phabbir? Pramod Bhaiya, Beena Bhabhi, and all the onlookers, they all knew everything about them and all they noised about was carefully plotted. With consumerist mindset, if you have some technical education available at your door and you procured some degrees in order to earn a few bucks, you can do all sort of things to anyone and never breathe a word about any crime. We only get to look at your position and plumb the depth of the drama and your involvement in this.

I was relieved as I had left the validation schools and was up to my ears in boundary classes. But for my ignorance, I would have joined them earlier. I vomited a jumble of words on paper. Even though it’s a little late, I have always made better choices, I thought.


Published by Smita Ray

Smita Ray is the mother of two lovely kids and hails from northeastern India. Her perpetual displeasure arising from the hypocrisy in the society underneath the semblance of religion, culture as well as the conditioning for compliance urged her to put down the impressions in her mind. In her spare time, she likes to have some culinary adventures along with her kids trying new recipes or crafting.

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