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0 (0) Rashmi Bansal is a writer, entrepreneur and a motivational speaker. An author of 10 bestselling books on entrepreneurship which have sold more than 1.2 ….

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Story 10: Hum aapke hain kaun

Story 10: Hum aapke hain kaun
4.4
(52)

The wedding card came with a box of Ferrero Rocher chocolates and the bearer – father of the groom – insisted on our attendance.

“Na na, I won’t listen to any excuses. Haven’t we known each other as long as you’ve lived in this complex? Kitna purana rishta hai hamara….”

To be honest, I didn’t feel any great kinship but ever since moving to NCR, we were forced to be more ‘social’. In Mumbai, my wife and I attended maybe one wedding a year. In Dillli-Gudgawa, shaadi ka season could mean 3 shaadis in a day. There was always a mad rush to marry on the ‘most auspicious muhurat’. 

Most auspicious for the caterer and ghodiwala… charging mooh-maanga premium.

As always, on the appointed day, the Mrs dressed up in fine clothes and fake jewellery, while I donned my kurta with Modi jacket. With the help of google maps, we reached the venue in our battered old Maruti Swift. As I handed my keys to the valet, I noticed a number of Mercedes, BMWs and a few Pajeros.  

The baarat was at the gate, but would surely take another hour to make its grand entry. This was indeed the best time to slip in and explore the cornucopia of food. We made a dash for the pani puri stall before it got too crowded. After a world food tour (Mexico, China, Italy and Burma), we returned to India for our just desserts.

My naada is feeling a little tight now, besides, duty is calling.  We stand in the kilometer-long queue with our shagan ka lifafa. When we finally ascend the lavishly decorated stage, we are warmly greeted.  

“I am so happy you have come to our function,” said the host, and he genuinely meant it. 

We greeted the bride and groom, in matching outfits and hum-saath-khush-hain expressions. Followed by the mandatory photo and veedeeo, which will rot in a pen drive for the next 20 years.   

Having played our part in another edition of the Big Fat Indian Wedding, we hop off the stage. Before we leave, there is one last ritual – the post-prandial.

Let the goras have their Bailey’s and Peach Schnapps. We desis know better. That leaf encrusted, juice-bombing, heaven-in-two-fingers – also known as Paan. Nothing tells you the class of a wedding more than the quality of its Banarasi. And by that yardstick, this wedding was off the charts. 

As we left the pandal, well satisfied, I noticed a helicopter standing near the gate, bedecked with marigolds. Bhai sab kuch dekh tha. Drones showering rose-petals, gold-painted human sculptures, Shahrukh Khan performing… but this was a first.  A ride home which the newly married couple would not forget!

Achcha tha,” my wife remarked, on the way home. “I could have worn a heavier sari.”

Stuck in bumper-to-bumper shaadi-wala traffic on NH48, I wished I was in that helicopter. 

***

Two days later there was a knock on our door at 6 am. It was the milkman, who had been serving us from the day we arrived in the complex. 

Bete ki shaadi to bahut badhiya kari. Ab to ghar pe aaraam kar sakte ho,” said my wife.

Ramlal Yadav grinned. He had sold his ancestral lands and become a crorepati. But a man cannot sit at home and ‘do nothing’. Hoon to main doodhwala, doodh hi to bechoonga. 

Woh bhi paani mila ke.

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8 thoughts on “Story 10: Hum aapke hain kaun

  1. The ending took me by surprise. What I wish would change is extravagance of these weddings – it is such a waste!

  2. Bala Girisaballa says:

    Lovely story – brings out an aspect of human need for acceptance, respect and dignity. We don’t think of these things when we see our milkman. Infact the milkman who supplies to our complex in Bangalore is also quite wealthy (something similar like the land earlier belonged to his dad) but he still delivers milk and newspaper. Do you think this aspect is transitory? I don’t think his son would deliver milk – he is already asking his dad for BMW bike. So, are we seeing a unique transition period in India’s suburban history. There is a similar story of Stanford too.

    1. I feel there will be a lot of social unrest in the next 10-15 years because there won’t be enough white collar jobs to fulfil expectations of the milkman’s son. Read the classic ‘The Good Earth’ by Pearl S Buck. Though set in China a hundred years ago, the same phenomenon is being repeated over and over again, in every society!

  3. Ok. After I listened your podcast, thoughts on story. I appreciated your story more.

    But the essence that you are talking “one needs job” or may be probably “meaning in life” more than anything else – is not coming sharply from the story itself. It simply tells me that rich man but was doing the job of Doodhawala. My thoughts please.

    1. A story cannot spell out everything. That’s why the audio explanation has been added.

  4. Too good .the unexpected twist at the end is like the schwezan sauce in Desi Chinese.

  5. Hum aaapke hai kaun the story thats mentions about a milk man ..i think in current scenario how i resonate with my profession is digital kitna bhi hume kitabe bechne hai …post lock down many more to sell…hume wohi aaata hai

  6. Parag Mathur says:

    Nice surprise at the end, enjoyed the story

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