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Friday, March 30, 2012

Effectiveness - LBC Post

She arrived home from the school, longing for a rest and a cup of tea.   As she entered, her mother in law looked up from her book, the religious scriptures which she never tired of reading.

"You look tired," said the old lady.  "Go and make yourself a cup of tea.  The children will be in from school soon."

So she went into the kitchen and put on the kettle.  Meanwhile, she went to the stores and took several handfuls of rice, which she duly sorted and washed with water which had been kept aside for that purpose.  Rice duly washed, she placed it in the pressure cooker with the requisite amount of water and turned on the gas.  Her tea was ready.  As she stood in the kitchen drinking her tea, she measured out several handfuls of moong beans and repeated the process she'd done with the rice.  As she put the beans on the gas in the pressure cooker, again with the requisite water, salt and masala, the cooker containing the rice whistled and she reduced the heat to simmer.  After the rice gave a second whistle, she sat down in the drawing room with the remainder of her tea, waiting for the moong beans to repeat the whistle process.  It did.

Both dishes cooked, she took a little time to rest.  It wouldn't be long now.  Her mother in law glanced at her sympathetically.

"A mother never gets rest," said the old lady. 

Right you are, she thought.  Do I need you to tell me what I already know? 

"And when you go to the market this evening, bring me a box of needles and thread," said the old woman.  "I told you to bring them yesterday and you didn't."

"I didn't go to the market," came the reply. "I don't go there unless I have some specific work."   The old lady frowned.

I can read her like a book, she thought.  She's thinking that this is not the way a well brought up woman speaks to her mother in law.  Well, I'm sorry for her.........

"Hello!  May I come in?" said a voice from outside.  Anita recognised the voice of Ms. Radha Agarwal, the principal of the nursery school where she worked.  The woman entered the drawing room without taking permission, a thing she'd never have permitted a child to do in her school.

"Anita, this is your book?  You left it behind in the school," said the principal in her brisk, businesslike way.  "I was passing on my way into town and thought I'd drop it in to you."

"Oh, thank you Ma'am," Anita replied, proceeding to introduce Ms. Agarwal to her mother in law, who nodded graciously.

"Well, aren't you a lucky girl, Anita? Sitting down having a cup of tea as soon as you came home.  Isn't your mother in law good to you?" said Ma'am.  Anita opened her mouth to speak, but decided to smile instead.

"Now I know how Anita is able to go to work and take care of the children," said Ma'am, smiling graciously at the old lady.  Anita tried hard not to laugh.  Meanwhile, her mother in law drank in the praise, smiling all the while.

"Please sit down for some time," she said.  "Anita, there must be some tea in the kitchen....."

"Oh, I can't, I'm so sorry.  Have to go, I have to do some work in the bazaar," replied Ma'am, making her excuses and getting ready to leave.  Which she did, amid effusive promises to return and have a cup of tea one day.  Meanwhile, Anita's daughter returned from school and the old lady made a big show of instructing the little girl to change her clothes and get ready to eat her lunch which was of course all ready.

"Oh, Anita is so lucky to have you. It's so easy to see how she's able to be so organised," raved Ma'am, as she walked way, still promising to come back one day.  Then she was gone.

"Anita!  Hurry up and give the child her food.  She must be hungry after being in school all day," said the old lady.  "And when you've given her the food, give me a cup of tea also,"  she added as an afterthought.  So Anita went into the kitchen to serve her daughter's meal.

"It's a busy day today.  Not much time to read.  Ma'am didn't have to  take all that trouble to return my book," she thought.

The book, The Independent Woman, lay unopened on the dining room table.

***
This is the weekly post for my blogging group, the Loose Blogging Consortium.  We post weekly (usually simultaneously) on a given topic and visit each other to see the different takes we have on the same topic.  We are, in alphabetical order, DeliriousRummuser,  GrannymarMagpieMaria SFocdwriterPadmumPaul,Rohit , The Old Fossil and Will.  If you have time, please visit my friends too.  This topic 'Effectiveness' was suggested by Rummuser.  


3 comments:

Rummuser said...

Message conveyed very effectively.

Grannymar said...

Very effective silence.

blackwatertown said...

Good punchline.

A prime example of when you just have to "offer it up".