Getting back from work rushing towards my apartment lift I found an old grandfather hushing his two granddaughters aged 5 and 8 in the lift. They were in their bath robes. It was not tough to guess that they were coming from an evening swim in the common pool. Me and my colleague smiled at the girls. I was pardoned but my male colleague was given a ‘mind your own business’ stare.
As the lift started escalating, here is the conversation between the scolding grandpa and the girls.
Grandpa: “ Ye baniyaan pehan ke matt nahaya karo, sab dekhte hain. Ye poore kapde pehna karo.” pointing to the bath robe (Don’t wear and swim in such scanty clothes, people stare, wear these robes).
Girl,8: “Daddu ye to bath robe hai smimming ke baad pehante hain.”, squeezing her swim cap.(But it’s a bath robe to be worn post swimming.)
Girl, 5: (giggling and making fun of him): “Daadu isse daal ke swimming nai karte, costume pehnte hain.” (We swim wearing this costume not the robe!)
Grandpa( shaking his head irritated): “Mumi se puch ke sahi kapde pehna”. (Ask your mother to give you the right clothes)
Girl, 8(Rolling her eyes, disinterested): “Ye mumi ne hi leke dia hai”(Mum bought them.)
Standing in front of him, I looked at his clothes. He looked out of place-not from this concrete jungle but yes a land of green fields, open sky, swaying crops and stay at home women.
Looking first at me and then at his granddaughters he zoned out thinking ,if sending his son to the big city to study was a great idea at all?