During my last visit to Sabah ( East Malaysia), while waiting to collect my baggage, I noticed a young couple.
Before I go any further, I do need to mention that I don’t look like a Malayalee. I look like a confused desi of undetermined origin! ( more so because of my choice of outfits!)
Anyway, back to the couple, the reason I looked at them was to see if they were the kids of someone I might know. Sabah has very few Indians and everyone knows everyone else! Even though I haven’t gone back home for a very long time, there is still this bond that connects me to my past..through the people whom I have known and their children..
Soon it was obvious that this particular couple is an Indian import ! ( no offence meant). She wore a very tight salwar with the duppatta hanging around her neck like a dog chain. He had the usual striped t shirt and shining white sneakers. ( I never understood the logic of wearing the duppatta around the neck like a dog chain for I always thought Duppata was meant to add another layer to make the outfit more respectable by hiding the boobs from public display.)
Soon I heard them talking in Malayalam and they did take covert look at me to see if I understood what they were talking..
I didn’t want to tell my whole family history to strangers and I did what I always do. Pretend that I am from Mars.
When the bags started to arrive my son took over the job of lifting the heavy bag off the conveyor belt. He refused my help saying ” I can handle it mom”
Meanwhile our Mallu guy spotted his bag while his wife was busy looking at the people around and I heard him scold his dear wife pretty loudly and say
“Edi Kazhuthey, vayum nokki nilkathey bag inte attam pidikaddi” ( You dumb nut, instead of standing around and doing nothing, help me lift the bag). He got her to carry one end of the bag to get it off the conveyor belt.
And I thought to myself, who raised this Idiot? How is it that he is not even capable of lifting a 20 kg bag by himself?
Chivalry may be dead, but the least a mother can do is to teach her son how to be a man. ( and no, he didn’t appear to have any physical deformities that prevented him from lifting a bag, he was just a spoiled brat)