The daily summaries of a house wife
July 6th..beginning ..
'Its been quite a few days since my husband and mother in law started their anxiety on override expenses at home. Hence I was forced to scribble these .Morning Adityan and Devan couldn't get on school bus. I had to call a driver to send them school in our car .Fare was rupees 150. Mother in law (hereafter called as Amma) wanted some fishes for lunch, even I too wanted to have...I went market and bought fishes of two types. Salmon and sardine...rupees 250..The number of salmons and sardines made a frown on mom's forhead and she recommended " you should ve bargain little more".Actully the fisher woman seemed so poor and it was quite hard for me to bargain even for a single pie. The weather was such a mixture of sun and drizzle.She was attracting customers with such screams, as if she would injure her throat!The faded gold plated chain over her neck and wrinkled costumes were sufficient for me to get tempted for giving an extra 50 rupees. She spent there for so long in the very bad weather ,still she survived without loosing energy. But I was there only for few minutes and suddenly a headache started. An unbearable one. I needed to buy a strip of pain killers. Rupees 20.Total expense for today is rupees 320.I am remained with rupees 1650 .'
Jayshankar bursted out in a continuous laugh. He was reading the expense note written in Swaty's beautiful handwriting. Amma and Adityan also joined in the laugh followed by Devan ,even he did not understand what's actually going on around ! After feeling, the expenses at home goes beyond the limits Jay insisted Swaty to write down the day to day expenses Thus she got her second chance for taking a pen which she used for writing the purchase list for kitchen and other house hold items . Being a house wife the role of a pen in her hands ends with such actions. Even sometimes writing her kids name slips on their books.
Swaty was busy washing the plates in kitchen when Jay 's car entered in the porch. She washed her hands under the tap . There were still remnants of ash and soap. She did not go for a thorough handwash. Wiped both hands in the housecoat ,she rushed to the living room. Jay exhibited all the tiredness and threw himself to the sofa. Swaty came with a cup off tea and the expense note. When all started laughing she helplessly looked around to each face .Jay stopped for a while and looked at her. Again went back to laugh.
He asked " Nithu ( its her pet name), is that true, you did a graduation? "
She was irritated. "Yeah I did graduation in zoology, not in accountancy"
"Hey, what's this Nithu, You are talking to your husband." Amma left the humour mood and tried to make the scene into a serious one.Swaty withdrawn back to the kitchen sink and resumed the work.
"Are you born in this sink? Always you are either here or with laundry. .and broomstick. ." Jay entered with an another provoke.Her face flushed dark.She went on working with the plates silently as if she is paying a revenge.
"Suppose you are died in this state..." Jay paused for a while. Swaty closed the running tap and looked at him unbelievably. 'I am died.?!!'
"After a long time you would be a goddess.. You just imagine ..a goddess. .Then her tools would be dishwash bars, scrubber, brooms ...And the offerings to her would be surf excel, henco..And this is how she sits..like we see about our godesses sitting on lotus and all..you will be sitting on that laundry space." Jay imitated how she would be sitting .
Swaty laughed watching him doing those gestures .
" Hey dont waste time. .go and take a shower. ..and serve me food.."Suddenly Jay reminded her. When she smiled, Jay gazed at her rough hair style and the stained housecoat at both ends where her hand reaches.Her fingers have lost the softness long ago. He put her current picture in the photo shop of his mind . Then zoomed in the smiling face and edited everything else and saved. Swaty has already left kitchen. When she passed nearby, the smell of asafoetida penetrated his nostrils. And a mixture of smells which cannot be distinguished. He tried remembering the scent she had when he met her for the first time. It was of her new cotton chudidhar, talcum powder and the sandal oil she smeared over her apparel. After the marriage, the very scent persisted for few days and vanished off . Now...!?! Jay walked towards the bed room emotionally. .
At night, In the background of southwest monsoon, Swaty looked through the opened window. She was lying in the warmth of Jay's embrace . The coconut trees outside were wet through. Swaty's wet hair spread over the pillow. Jay said with pamper "Nithu, writing down daily expense is not like working on a story . As a graduate I expect more from you. You don't need to go for detailing. Driver : 150, Fish: 200..and so on..Are you not intelligent enough to do so..?"
Story, story....Swaty's thoughts suddenly took a detour. When was it , a time of she wrote stories? In school, college. ..In some magazine one of her story got published. After leaving college, she did not write anything, especially for last eight years. When she go through the novels and stories found in magazines she thinks her literature works are very substandard. She thinks, it should not be understandable in one read, thats how a story must be written ! And now she has no such reading habit and vocabulary to do an excellent work. No one is there to encourage her in the very talent .No one..even Jay..Its doubtful whether he knows about it. But in the realities of life it needed a wife who can maintain a neat balance sheet of husband's income. She believed it so hard. Hence in order to save the LPG she used the classical method of cooking. Dishwasher and washing machine remained just like show pieces. She spent her entire time in washing dirty clothes, cleaning utensils in kitchen and sweeping. She tried hard to be a good wife . But acceptance never came in her way. With that disappointing thought she slipped into sleep.