The third eye
Next time I will write about topic more serious than toilets, it’s promised. I could for instance speak about the upcoming war between India and Pakistan (the former bombed terrorist nests (modestly so-called “surgical strikes” and the latter denying this ever happened); or the Dassault deal to sell Rafales in India; or the fights over water of South Indian states; or the idolising fever for Jayalalitha, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu (an alcoholic lesbian (or so they say) who has been admitted in a hospital mid-September and disappeared ever since); or the mosquito-induced epidemic of dengue and chikungunya; or the pregnancy of Kareena Kapoor. But this will be for later!
For now, I would like to spend some time on mother-in-laws, or MILs as they call them. But not mine, I would rather avoid a family scandal! (Just joking.) Rather about two incidences I happened to witness.
The first time it was a the gynec in Gurgaon. A young woman came out of the doctor’s cabin visibly upset. Her husband followed her and took her to a more discreet corner (on which I had full view, don’t accuse me of eavesdropping!). And who follows? The mother-in-law! And the father-in-law who tries very hard to take away his wife. But no, she goes back to the couple 2-3 times before finally giving them some space. You might tell me “But who goes to the gynec with their parents??” Bah, quite a few Indians actually. A baby is definitely a (extended)-family matter and it feels like (to me) that the mother-in-law is actually the one having the baby!
The second time it was at the airport, at the departure gate. A young couple is getting separated and they are both in tears. And who is standing there, two feet away (I am not even exaggerating), looking at them? The mother-in-law! And they hug, and they cry and she stays there; it lasts for quite a while. When I comment on the scene to my husband, what do you think his answer is? “Where do you want her to go??” Well, if she absolutely has to go to the airport, she could go get some chai no? And give them some intimacy, privacy. Priva-what?? Ah np, it’s true, it is not part of the Indian vocabulary ;)