20 January

Ogre is not upset about my absent-without-leave status on Sunday afternoon. She has much too much to think about to bother much about my comings and goings. As usual.

Dodo is feeling a little better since the last two days, and he has gone off to meet an old colleague. His contact with us may be touch-and-go at times, but he is meticulous about keeping himself updated with the work his colleagues do in Mumbai. I’m sure he called his doctor friends more often than he did us. And whenever he was in town, he met up with them, borrowed the latest medical magazines, and books and research articles, to take back with him on his village trail.

As Ogre fills me up with kothimbir vadi and tea,

She says: “Dodo says we don’t have to worry about Etcetra. He’s had a long chat with her, and he says she is fine.”

Me: “Really?”

Ogre: “Dodo says she’s just interested in her dance. And if that is so, we should let her be. And not bother her too much about her studies.”

Me: “Really?”

Ogre: “Dodo says that he’s sure she’s not going around with anyone or anything. She told him in great detail what her social life comprised of. And it doesn’t have any boyfriends in it, so far.”

Me: “Really?”

I am grateful that I have not been subjected to a tête-à-tête with Dodo about my social life. I don’t think I want to tell him anything about mine in great detail. I am quite happy to have my feelings for So-On hidden within the confines of my own heart. And as for High BP, the less said the better. Even to myself.

However, as far as Etcetra is concerned, I am not sure that she has in reality, been fully and truly frank with Dodo about her love life. She is hardly going to admit to him, however close they may be, that she is involved with her Sir. If she is, that is.

It’s strange how families function. Etcetra who would rather fight with Ogre and me than tell us her secrets, will open up to Dodo who is hardly ever around. She feels closer to him than she does to us even though she sees him so little. To me, he is my father, and yes, I feel attached to him because of that. But apart from that fact, he could be a complete stranger.

I expect certain things from him because he is my father, and I don’t find him giving those to me or Etcetra, and that really puts me off. Whereas Etcetra who is so demanding of Ogre and me, and prone to temper tantrums for the smallest perceived negligence on our part, has no complaints about Dodo. Or his reneging on his fatherly duties.


2 Comments on “20 January”

  1. desi-at-large says:

    Kothimbir vadis and tea – this chapter has my mouth and eyes watering.
    Worldly-wise Dodo can’t see Etcetra is not telling him all, naturally, she is more than a little scared of his reaction. Obviously, Ogre (and Appi) feel something is going on or why would Ogre broach the topic.
    Another instance of people, in this case, Dodo, seeing and not looking – yesterday’s instalment had High BP not having observed his fiancee’s strange silences.
    And Appi wondering about how Dodo has probably called colleagues more often than her.
    At times, it feels like sabhiko kaam se hi kaam hai, even your precious family.
    I’m hazarding a couple of guesses – Appi ko High BP se pyaar ho gaya hai and 2-xy will probably get a bad deal with the hope of a future compromise.

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