Keeping up with The Kanherias
The Aunt came back in from the balcony into the living room and sat down on the sofa with a theatrical sigh. Nobody reacted, so she gave up the drama and directly attacked The Uncle sitting behind the newspaper.
“The Kanherias have got a new car. A big swanky one.”
The Uncle grunted.
“How did they manage to get one?” she wondered.
The Uncle lowered the newspaper. “From the showroom like everyone else I imagine.”
“Tsk, Tsk!” said The Aunt irritably. “I meant – how can they afford a car like that!! He and you work in the same office, na? Look at our old clattering jalopy from the last century!”
No reply. The newspaper was back in position.
15 minutes later.
The Aunt’s mobile gave a tinkle. She checked her whatsApp message.
“Raju, your Math tuition teacher has just put up the marks of your weekly Test. You’ve got 16/20.”
Raju looked relieved and smiled happily.
Not so The Aunt. She scrolled down the message. “Let’s see now – Priya’s got 16 too. Rakesh – 17.5. Ketan – 18.5……” She looked up. “Ketan? Ketan Kanheria? He’s got more than you!!”
“Amma!” protested Raju. “Only 2 marks more than me!!”
The Aunt ignored that. “Really! That boy” she said “is God’s gift to his parents! He gets good marks, his hair is always neatly combed, his shirt tucked in! And you …… your hair is all over town and your pants look like they’ll come down any minute!!”
In a defiant reply Raju pulled his pants down even more.
Half an hour later.
The Aunt returned from her evening walk and sat down heavily in the armchair. She looked round at the rest of the family watching TV and announced, “I just met Mrs Kanheria and her son.” No response.
She looked at the boys and said “They were coming back from Ketan’s singing class.”
“Good for them.” muttered Raju preparing to escape from the room.
The Aunt continued. “It seems there is one vacant seat available. I have got the number.”
The boys looked at her in growing alarm. She said to Raghu, “I’ll speak to Madam. You can join from tomorrow.”
“Singing class of course!”
“Amma I don’t want to sing!”
“This is the age when you should learn new things. Look at Ketan. He goes for so many classes – singing, piano, Toast masters, chess…..!”
“Ammaaa” said Raju jumping into the battle to save his brother. “What’s the use? Have you seen him trying to kick a ball? He looks so funny! He can’t even run to save his soul.”
“But why should he run?” asked The Aunt puzzled.
“Why should I sing?” countered Raghu. “Appa tell her. I don’t like singing!!”
The Aunt shook her head at him. “I know better than you what you like and don’t like!!”
Later in the evening.
The Aunt called from the kitchen. “Both of you haven’t finished your lunch box today. Why?”
“It was boring Amma.” called back Raju. “We shared Ketan’s lunch box today. OOOH It was yummmm!”
The Aunt appeared at the doorway bristling like a hedgehog.
“Yes Amma. Ketan’s mom sends the best lunch box in the whole school” declared Raghu smacking his lips.
The Aunt was now breathing hard and had gone slightly red in the face.
“Yes Yes.” chipped in The Uncle. “Mr Kanheria shares his lunch sometimes and its really awesome. Delicious, innovative and healthy too.”
The Aunt gave him a “You too Brutus” look.
“Why don’t you give us lunch like her?” said Raju. “We always have idli, dosa, upma…..!!”
“Yes so boring….” added Raghu.
The Aunt advanced into the living room.
“Oh I’m boring is it? And Mrs Kanheria is innovative, healthy and ….and.. what was that …delicious!!!”
She untied the apron from around her waist and flung it down declaring, “FINE then! All of you go there only for all your meals!!!
The Aunt continued,”Mrs Kanheria – The Super Woman!!” She sniffed loudly. “I never liked her anyway!!!”
This is the 11th in the series – The Adventures of The JP Family as part of the A to Z Blog Challenge 2019.
Alphabet illustration – Sudarshan Rao.