Family re-union lunch for V and me with Sonny boy at an upmarket restaurant, mostly haunted by Telugus who loved a spicy fare.As we walked to the lift, we found ourselves in the company of a not-so-young but not-so-old bunch of Telugu women,very sartorially turned out who started greeting Sonny boy.He was in the best of his social manners, flashing a smile here and there to whoever called him baby!One of them asked if she could take him in her arms,we okayed. We were 7 people in the lift and of course, the baby.
And that tiny lady in the Pochampalli sari remarked - 'Enduku he's not crying,huh..' Silence. She has a few gray hairs and clearly looks a mother of 3 grown-up teenagers. Is it a norm that a baby qualifies to be a baby only if crying? Smiling babies are not babies if that is what she meant.
While every other lady took turns to coo and squeal along with Sonny boy, this same woman follows up with another one - wondering if the baby is Chinese because he is cute.That's when all the other ladies ganged up against her and shut her up with - "What a stupid question!"
I could have well taught her to go back to school and do her geography lessons again.No, that's old and does not work anymore.She is a working woman, so she should spend her money travelling instead of visiting temples and buying saris or gold.
V shot back in chaste Telugu - "India is a pedda country..so many states and regions, each very different from the other..Assam lu, Meghalaya lu..North-East lu just like South lu..
Ahaan, she joined in - "I only wanted to confirm -North East. See!"
What to say.
Enduku - "Why" in Telugu
Pedda - "Big" in colloquial Telugu
lu - The plural sign in Telugu,also extended to masculine nouns.