Tuesday, May 17, 2011

WORRY AMMA


WORRY AMMA
Fiction Short Story
By
VIKRAM KARVE

“I am worried,” she said.

“Worried…? About what…?” I asked.

“Marriage…”

“Marriage…? What marriage…? Whose marriage…?”

“My marriage, you stupid...” she admonished me.

“Your marriage…? But you are not getting married…!”

“That’s what I am worried about – why am I not getting married – I may never get married…”

“Of course you will get married…”

“Really…you think so…”

“Of course I think so…you are the most eligible girl…so beautiful…so talented…so educated…the best boys will queue up for your hand…”

She did get married.

Yes, she got married at the right time, to the best boy…but not before a few she subjected me to a few onslaughts of her terrible spells of worry.

Like just before her engagement ceremony she took me aside and said, “I am worried…”

“Not now…!” I admonished.

“Don’t talk to me like that…you are the only one…”

“Okay, okay, tell me…”

“Do you really think we are compatible…?”

“Of course you are compatible…in fact you two are made for each other and your marriage will be a big success…” I assured her.

“Will he let me work after marriage…?”

“Of course, he will let you work…didn’t you both discuss it the other day…”

“Yes, but I am worried that in the heart of his heart he doesn’t want me to work. ”

“I spoke to your fiancĂ©. I asked him very clearly. He wants you to work and have a successful career…” I lied.

“Really…?”

“Yes...”

She had a flourishing marriage and a highly successful career but that did not stop her from bombarding me with her salvoes, fits and spells of worry whenever we met from time to time.

“I am worried. Will I have children?”

She had two – a boy and a girl.

“I am worried about my kids. What will they do in life? It is so difficult, there is so much competition.”

Both her children did very well. Her son got into IIT, then IIM, and got a very good job in an MNC. Her daughter got into AIIMS, became a doctor, specialized in Gynaecology, and was working in a leading hospital, but her blitzkrieg of worries continued unabated.

“I am worried.”

“Now what?”

“My children’s marriage, you fool. Will my son get a good girl, will she get along with me? My daughter….?”

Both her son and daughter got the best of spouses who got along very well with their in-laws. In fact, her daughter-in-law doted on her and they stayed together as a happy joint family and her daughter who had married a colleague doctor lived nearby and visited her almost every day.

“I am worried.”

“Now what?”

“My daughter – her pregnancy – will her delivery be okay?”

“Come on, both she and her husband are the best gynaecologists in town. Surely there is no reason to worry.”

Her daughter had a very smooth pregnancy and delivered a bonny boy. So did her daughter-in-law.”

It seemed to be the end of her worries. She and her husband were well off, had a beautiful house in the posh area of the city, enjoyed the best of health and were looking forward to a satisfying retired life. They were blessed with grandchildren and gave the impression of one happy family. I envied her, she had everything in the world, she was really lucky. Now, there was absolutely no reason for her to worry.

Worry Amma, as I called her, came into my life when I was a small boy studying in the third standard. She was our newly arrived neighbour’s daughter, my new classmate, and I was supposed to “guide” her and “look after her” especially as we travelled to school and back in the public bus (there were no school buses those days). But most of the time it was she who was looking after me and making my life miserable with her constant worrying.

She was always worried – will the bus come on time, will she be late for assembly, will she do well in her exams, her homework, later, how she looked, her crushes, everything. I was her sounding board who she bombarded with her worries. That’s why I secretly called her “Worry Amma.”

She did very well at studies, and so did I, and I thought she, like other girls would study arts, but to my horror she too joined the same IIT as I did and made my life miserable with her worries for the next five years. And then, try as I did, I could not escape her salvoes of worry whenever we met. In fact I seemed to have got so used to her that I missed her whenever we did not meet for some time, like now, I had not met her for over a month as she had gone on a holiday abroad with her husband and entire family.

“Hi, all alone?” Worry Amma accosted me as I was enjoying my SPDP at Vaishali. She didn’t ask if she could join me – she just pulled a chair and sat opposite me.

“I am worried,” she said.

“Now what? Are you worried that you have nothing to be worried about?” I joked.

“I am worried about you.”

“Me?” I gasped, choking on the food in my mouth.

“Yes. You. I am really worried about you. Look at you. Living all alone. Eating all this junk food. Nobody to look after you. I am really worried about you. But don’t worry, I will find you a nice wife.”

Now, I am worried.


VIKRAM KARVE 

Copyright © Vikram Karve 2011
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this work
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

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About Vikram Karve 

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer. Educated at IIT Delhi, ITBHU Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures(2008) and is currently working on his novel and a book of vignettes and short fiction. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories, creative non-fiction articles on a variety of topics including food, travel, philosophy, academics, technology, management, health, pet parenting, teaching stories and self help in magazines and published a large number of professional research papers in journals and edited in-house journals for many years, before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for almost 14 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing. Vikram lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts. 

Vikram Karve Academic and Creative Writing Journal: http://karvediat.blogspot.com
Professional Profile Vikram Karve: http://www.linkedin.com/in/karve
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Vikram Karve Creative Writing Blog: http://vikramkarve.sulekha.com/blog/posts.htm
Email: vikramkarve@sify.com          
Fiction Short Stories Book
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
© vikram karve., all rights reserved.
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