Suraiya was running as fast as she could. The sweltering day had already made her weak and dizzy. The show must have started, her over anxious mind kept on ticking. Had she left earlier from Gupta auntie’s house, she would have reached a minute before. But she couldn’t even afford to get away from those grumpy Gupta’s beforehand. For the first time ever they had offered 500 rupees extra to assist them with their family function.


“Ham pahunch gaye (I’m here)”, Suraiya was hyper ventilating. “Shhh… Chup kar maata jag gayi, toh phir kaam pe laga degi (Shush! Lower down or else the old woman will wake up and put us back to work).” whispered Bindiya, loud enough to wake up any sleepy head.

Suraiya couldn’t make out what was happening. She had missed ten minutes of the show. As usual Gian had trapped Nobita again and Doraemon was there to his rescue, but this time for what? Aryan, the brat was hopping around in front of T.V. mimicking the actions of Nobita adding to the pre existing annoyance. She could see maata ji making twists and turn on her bed in the next room. “Hame thodi jagah toh do, woh khadoos jaageh gayiyen toh tumko bhi kachu na dekhne ko mile. Jhaad lagayike kaam pe laga dengi. Satko aage (Give me some space. If that old lady wakes up, even you won’t be able to see anything)”, ordered Suraiya.

Mrs. Aradhna Sen, admirer of artifacts had placed a giant figure of laughing Budha on window sill, blocking their view to television. Suraiya was annoyed. Few episodes of peeking through the window and she had fallen for these animated characters.

The half an hour show ended bringing Bindiya and Suraiya back to Sen family’s household work. Now they are supposed to finish up an hour’s chores in half the time, before Mrs. Aradhna Sen returns from office and the grumpy old woman wakes up.

“Hame bhi televijan chahiye (I want a television)” uttered Suraiya. “Kya!” shocked Bindiya. “Tumko malum bhi hai kitne ka aata hai? Bohot paise lagte hai isme. Ek saal ki tankhawa se bhi na ayega televijan (Do you know how much it costs? Even an year’s salary won’t be enough to get one)”. Bindiya gave the reality check which Suraiya didn’t appreciate. “Toh ka ham nahi dekh sakte? Chahe ek saal lage ya do, ham bhi lenge. Suna hai ab ooh dabba aur diss phree mile hai (Does that mean I can’t enjoy to have one? No matter how long it takes, I’ll buy it. I’ve heard that the box and dish are available for free now)”, quipped Suraiya. “Hawa me mahal banane ki batein kar rhi ho tum (You’re building castles in the air)” said Bindiya while she struggled with the plateau of dishes.

“Chaar gharon me kaam karti ho. Phir bhi kitni mushkil se apne liye is baar tumne sakool ki nayi kameez li hai. Sakool ka kharch, ghar ka kharcha, upar se tumhara wo bewda baap. Jama karne dega kya woh tumhe kuch? (You work in four houses to support your family and school. After such a long time you could purchase a new uniform. Above all will your drunkard father let you save anything?)” Suraiya was deeply offended at this remark.Suraiya

“Agar tum honsla badha nahi sakte toh kachu galat bhi na bolo. Tum hi dekho chori chipe maalkino k ghar teebhi. Dekhna, hamare paas bhi hoga ek. Tab tum hi aogi hamar pass (If you cannot encourage me then stay quiet don’t say bad things. You keep peeking into other’s T.V. One day I’ll have one of my own and you’ll be the one coming to me)” was the stern reply. Aryan, the menace heard their conversation and laughed till his Mc Donald pot belly shook hard.

“Gareeb jaroor hai par himmat kisi se kam nahi. Tum ghisso baratney aur tum thooso maa baap ki kamayi (I’m poor, but rich with will power. You scrub the dishes and you leisure on your parent’s income).” Suraiya tossed her long braid behind and made a confident exit to wash stinking pile of clothes.

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