Saturday, May 2, 2009


Here I was happily sipping a chilled Chardonnay at one of those natty afternoon brunches soaking in the limelight as I held my audience spell bound with tales from my seaside vacations when a nasal drawl burst my happiness bubble. ‘Dahling!’ My blood freezes, it’s Gucci Babe smirking pityingly at me, ‘Snorkeling is for bachhas, honestly, there’s more to a holiday than staring at a giant fish tank!’ instantly my popularity plummets and I go from being the next Jacques Cousteau to a mere machhiwali. Gucci Babe tosses her glossy hair, pouts her perfect lips and shoves me aside. For the next miserable hour I stand ignored as she dissects every possible exotic holiday ranging from whiskey trails to bungee jumping to shopping sprees, down to every excruciating, annoying detail. The audience can’t get enough and now she’s spewing forth on some blooming Art and Culture Trail in France ‘that’s soooo hot this season dahlings. It’s a must do’.
It’s so unfair; the closest I’ve gotten to anything arty are my children’s paintings! Tears threatened to spill into my wine when my phone rings,
‘Hellooo Memsahib!’
I can’t believe it! It’s that dratted woman Laxmi bai! Why can’t she just leave me alone? I scuttle to a corner and hiss down the line
‘What is it now? I’m busy!’
‘Memsahib I’m taking chutti tomorrow, phirang memsahib coming to my house for holiday’ what on earth is she yakking on about?
‘Laxmi bai, are you ok?’ I’ve instantly sobered up.
‘I fine memsahib, but tomorrow I am having guests from Amerika. They stay with me, eat with me and sleep with me in my jopadpatti. I getting lot of paisa for this’ by now I am convinced she’s been sniffing something, the woman’s gone bonkers!
‘And why do they want to do that?’ I snigger.
‘Arrey memsahib, you don’t watch Slumdog phillum or what? Every phirang now dying to live in jopadpatti like Dev Patel.’
Whaaat! She’s definitely lost her marbles, I’m going to have to replace her, can’t have her hallucinating like this.
‘You don’t believe me memsahib, go read newspaper!’ and she angrily slams down the phone. This is ridiculous! I glance over at the gaggle surrounding Gucci Babe and a fresh stab of jealously sends me scouting for hubby dear and his blackberry.
‘Are you all right?’ Hubby’s never seen me get all sweaty and excited over a gadget before. I’m looking at the article, reading it and its unbelievable! Laxmi Bai’s right! A delicious thrill envelopes my body, I look over at Gucci Babe, she’s still at it. Well not for long darling! I grip my wine glass and sashay down to upset her little party.
‘That’s all very nice dahlings, but these holidays you speak of are sooo passé. One must do something off beat, something that no one except Angelina Jolie has done…’ Gucci Babe stops yakking and everyone else starts gawking.
‘You pack your bags, dump the five stars and go camp in a slum for the Oscar experience of a lifetime!’
It’s like I’ve unleashed a volcano; everyone suddenly goes ballistic, badgering me for details. I coolly reach for my cell and dial,
‘Laxmi Bai, please find me 20 jopadpattis. My friends want to take a Slumdog Holiday with you this summer!’
Happy Holidays ya all!!