“I like that saree very much” my friend remarked wistfully, as the salesgirl spread it before us.
“Yes” agreed my wife—“Buy it before anybody does. Your Meena will really look nice in it, and appreciate the surprise gift.” When he hesitated, she offered to loan the money.
“Will you take it back if I return it?” he enquired.
She pointed to the board above; “Purchases once made cannot be taken back’-It clearly said.
“You are thinking of selling even before buying? my wife teased.
“My wife has a bad habit of returning anything purchased or given the first time”- He explained—“Irrespective of its quality or its necessity. Some shopkeepers are good enough to take it back but many don’t so, I have a cupboard full of such untaken-back things.”
We didn’t know what to say, whether to laugh or commiserate. A few months later I heard that the wife had been rectified.
“She wanted to take her brother’s daughter as bride for our son; Both parties had agreed, but I hesitated to give my approval saying, “In no time you will order your son to return the bride and I will cut a sorry figure.”
That was the end of her thoughtless habit. She no more indulges in it, but the new daughter-in-law, being her brother’s daughter, seems to have inherited the genes, and. . . . as he gleefully explained-“ Giving a trying time to her mother-in-law!”
Another friend’s wife has an even more peculiar foible; She has been nicknamed as ‘Exchange Lady’ by the shop-keepers since she invariably exchanges all the items bought-big or small..; Being the only child father had indulged her, but the husband found her a white elephant.
“But I found a novel way to cure her” he informed us with pride.
“How?” We all wanted to know.
“Did you beat her, starve her, or divorce?”
“None of those rubbish! My method was a simple one . . .”
And as we looked at him with bated breath, ended dramatically, “I too imbibed her habit—began exchanging what all she had exchanged with as much gusto!