Yes I know, I have already posted this here. But re-posting it now for this contest. Haven’t had a chance to read Yashodhara Lal’s book yet, but will jump on it first chance I get. Much as I’d like to go for the meal at the new Mamagoto outlet in Gurgaon, chances are slim since I am not based in Delhi (and much less chance of winning because of some fantastically stupendous entries for this contest).
But that doesn’t stop me from participating! 😉 Rather than coming up with a new story for this contest about my own “Just Married” days, I choose to remember my cousin’s marriage and the funny incident following it.
I still giggle reading this. This is also re-posted for the new readers of my blog who are yet to read this one. Worth it! 🙂
Unlike North-Indian weddings, south-Indian ones usually take place during the day. The partying is of course at night. So was it during my cousin’s wedding and most of my family had gathered for it.
The wedding was of my second cousin AN, and by the time my 3 first cousins and I (we belong to a different side of the family) reached the house in the evening after the wedding, the decorations for the nuptial chamber were in full-swing. All my cousins on the cousin AN’s side of the family were busily involved in it. We also joined in enthusiastically. That’s when we saw what these guys had in store for the poor groom A and his bride S, who were both barred from going anywhere near the room lest the surprise be spoilt.
My other cousins had placed a fake bat on the fan which would fall onto them the moment they switched it on. They also placed scary looking fake spiders and snakes – on the pillow and one on the centre of the bed – both hidden from view. Somebody suggested placing a squeaky toy beneath the mattress. Every stupid idea was welcomed hence that also was obliged! AN’s younger brother AJ rolled his eyes…thinking this wasn’t in the least enough to scare them, but all the same agreed.
The ladies of the family dissuaded them from keeping anything too scary or problematic in the room, lest it scares off the new bride. But little pranks were always welcome. However all this apart, the room was strewn with flowers and rose petals, elaborate decorations on the bed completed the look. It would be difficult to spot where the pranks were hidden.
We left the room, letting our other cousins rearrange the remaining things in whatever way they wanted. The bride and groom tried to sneak into the room (separately) and sent spies (cousins who were on their side) to the room to find out what exactly was being planned in there, but we were too fast for them. All plans thwarted, we retreated to the terrace for some cool air and gossip.
Some songs, talks and a little while later when my cousin and I went down to get a drink of water, we were greeted by the sight of all sights outside the room. Cousin AN’s mother…and was helping her daughter-in-law, the bride S, to sneak into the room to take a peek at the pranks awaiting her so that she would be prepared!! Wow! This beats all MIL-DIL horror stories I’ve ever heard.
We screamed the house down.
“Sushil aunttttttttyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!! Mummyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!!!! They are letting her go inside. Come fassssssssssstttttttttttttttt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Unfortunately too many of us were screaming at one go, and nobody understood why. Half the neighbourhood woke up by then. The men-folk who were peacefully having a drink near the balcony threw everything away and came running for their lives to rescue us from whatever mishap they thought were happening to us!
Three of them burst through the doorway at one go, nearly splitting into two, puffing and panting: “What happened? what happened?”
We had to then answer an angry group of men that it was just a prank gone wrong and nothing had actually gone badly and it was a joke etc etc. Needless to say, the priority of the incident did not go down too well with them and it took sometime to calm them down…phew!
The room was finally locked from the outside until further notice, and all of us retreated for some song-and-dance-and-fun on the lawns. The rest of the story is how I heard it in reported speech from one of my other cousins.
When the time came for the groom and bride to enter the nuptial chamber, the cousins who helped decorate the room as well as groom AN’s younger brother AJ entered room 15 minutes before to hide themselves inside! Yes, the sneaky brats! AJ hid himself inside the laundry basket somehow, another cousin hid behind the clothes-stand and the remaining 6 of them stuffed themselves inside the tiny bathroom at one end.
A little while later AN and S were shoved into the room. Cousin AN wasn’t a total fool…he found the fake spider, bat etc. in a minute…and even checked UNDER the bed to make sure nobody was hidden there! Apart from that, he didn’t find anything immediately. Although he wasn’t totally satisfied, he retreated for now.
Unassumingly the couple sat on the bed. Strains of romantic conversation as overheard by the cousins in the room:
S: Jaanu, why don’t you turn on the A/c? It’s stuffy in here…
AN: Sorry meri jaan…let me do it right away.
AJ choked himself not to giggle.
That’s when the AN’s mother entered the room with the customary glass of milk. She was the mother of all spoilsports!! She looked all around the room – all the while AN looking at her suspiciously – and then mouthed the statement that would spoil the entire prank for the cousins: “Where are the other kids? I don’t see them anywhere! HAVE THEY COME OUT YET??!!!!”
AN stared at her in shock, realisation dawning on him. He jumped up, ready for action. Then he started inspecting each and every corner. By then AN’s mother left the room.
First to be discovered was poor AJ. AN approached the laundry basket suspiciously as if an atom bomb was hidden in there. Then he tried the best method of finding out – he started KICKING it non-stop left, right and centre!!! After 5 minutes of somehow tolerating this torture, AJ tumbled out groaning in pain: “Stop bhaiyaaaaa…PLEASE! Ini enne kondu vaiyya!!! (I can’t take it anymore!)”
AN caught him by the collar and pulled him up. He was thoroughly enjoying this by now.
AN: You bastard! Got you! Now tell me where the others are!
AJ (still groaning in pain but mustering up courage): Never!! We won’t tell you!
AN: “WE?” Alright, I’ll find the rest myself. Get out! NOW!
By then the guy from behind the clothes-stand also got discovered, and both he and AJ were kicked out of the room. AN still started looking all around the room poking and kicking corners and all places he found suspicious. That was when he chanced upon the switchboard. Both the switches for the exhaust fan and light for the bathroom was switched on…! Why would that happen in an empty bathroom?? The light dawned on AN and he decided the best punishment.
He coolly sauntered up to the bathroom, LOCKED it from the outside, and switched off the exhaust fan and light and went back.
S: What happened?
AN (grinning): Just you wait! 😀
The 6 people stuck in the tiny bathroom got the shock of their lives when both light and air disappeared from their vicinity! No fresh air, no light…and 6 people crammed into a small space, plus it was a humid summer night. 10 minutes into the ordeal they started whispering to each other to find a way out. 20 minutes later, the situation did not change. 30 minutes later, their patience was at an all-time low.
Finally 40 whole minutes later, they started banging on the bathroom door and begged for mercy to be let out.
AN laughed the anti-hero triumphant laughter and let them out one by one.
AN: Couldn’t you have tried anything better? You guys are pathetic !!!
Grumbling and mumbling and laughing…the cousins accepted defeat and gave their bhabi a welcome hug. Finally they all left the room one by one and let the couple in peace.
Bride S laughed her way into the husband’s home and heart. I’m sure she would be remembering the interesting memories of her first night in her husband’s home till her last day!