Saturday, April 28, 2007

The female of the species...

Never do I crave more for a sister; than when my mom calls out -
"Sagar, will u accompany me to buy my saree..."
"Nahi ma... got work...", i dismiss...
"But u do so much for your friends... & when I... ", she annoyingly protests.
"Ok fine... let's go..." I cut short her sentence & sheepishly submit.

Now begins the ordeal...

She has a handwritten chit of the address to a shop that's newly opened in some corner of the town. Vimla mausi's friend's daughter has shopped there & she has spread the secret word amongst the female circle of how exquisite the collection there is...
"Why not Shopper's Stop", I mumble inaudibly...
"U said something?", she enquires; disinterested in my answer.
We leave...

After finally reaching the place, we r greeted by a middle-aged man who leads us to the hidden treasure. The shop's decently big & has all male employees! Duh... so much for saree shopping!

I cannot but emphasize the patience of every employee therein! Had these guys applied the same kind of patience at penance, they would have been 'maha-yogis' by now.

"Yes?", enquires our attendant.
"Sarees", my ignorance blurts out at this shop exclusively meant for sarees!
"Paithani", my mom corrects, after giving me a grim look & refining my reply.

One by one the guy unfurls a 100 sarees in front of us.
My mom's unimpressed & she shows no sympathy for the guy who so patiently is trying to understand what her mysterious mind is unable to distinctly vocalize...

"Which one do u like more?", she asks me, holding 4 similar looking sarees in front of me that differ only by a slight bluish hue.
Too much of a choice for a guy who buys only jeans & that too in just 2 shades - light blue & dark blue.
"Errr... this one", I point out randomly.
"Oh! I liked the 3rd one more"
"Hmmm... Let me look again", I say to shorten the decision process.
"On second look, the 3rd one does look better. Good choice", I persuade her.

"By card", I wave my debit card to the owner, who forgivingly ignores me.
Experience has taught him that fickle is the mind of a lady.

Now begins the acid test for the 4 short-listed ones.
The fabric, the borders, the embroidery, the glaze, the shade, the price...
All have to align... an event, rarer than the alignment of the heavenly bodies to cause an eclipse...

Finally, the attendant wears all! Disgusting & funny is the sight of fellow brethren wearing lady's costume to please a lady! The long stare & a raised wrinkle on her nose still indicates her disapproval.

Finally, after what seems like an endless ordeal, she does finalize one.
Still unsure, she asks the attendant to hold it in 'natural light'. The fellow sensing near victory, leads us to the door of the shop & unfurls it there. Now this time, I'm embarrased. Too conscious of other onlookers. But oblivious is the woman who has her heart set on something!

Finally she nods, they pack, I pay & we are out of the shop. I now know the kind of joy experienced by the overworked, overdragged & exhausted crew of Columbus' ship on sighting land! I dare to look back, only to see attendants to other ladies holding a saree in 'natural light' at the doors of the shop! This time a chuckle escapes me... the first time in the last N hours...

I am more than glad to be back home & my mom has realized that the colour of the saree she just bought resembles one of those she already possesses. She will be visiting the shop again tomorrow to exchange it!

Wonder if an experience of this kind inspired Kipling to pen down his poem, "The female of the species, is deadlier than the male"! I fully empathize, Mr. Kipling.

8 comments:

Rachit Awasthi said...

Excellently put. I find your writing style very interesting, sort of immerses you in the details of the story and makes you feel a part of it ... a product of an observant mind. I'll be linking this post on my blog. Please write more frequently, humour is your forte.

Sandeep said...

h:-)

hey..i guess its God's way to prepare you for whats coming ahead in life.....best luck !!


PS: No amount of good luck would help you out though :P

Sandeep said...

forgot to mention....its a very well written post..i agree with rachit's comment....n hey, am coming over this weekend to discuss this post with your mom !!

Pooja said...

ha ha ha, that was a very funny read. To be fair, as a woman I dislike going shopping with men coz their disinterest & indifference shows in so many subtle and sometimes even blatant ways. Shopping by myself or with female friends is definitely the way for me.

Sagar Bhanagay said...

It's best that way :). See, men can accompany women for shopping, finish theirs, get back home, catch up with buddies over beer & a game of football at ESPN, clean up, cook & call the lady to check if she's done with her share of shopping... ;). If it's gonna take longer, switch to Star-Sports, call up other buddies, order more beer...

Pooja said...

ha ha ha, fair enough!

Prasun said...

Dude ... my gmail id does not work (have not checked for ages and eons) ... i loved the post on shopping ... however i am very very seriously concerned about you ... since i know you are bhanagay and not gay and i assume that with your brother now out of the way , you are in line for a wedding ... and thats my cause of concern ... one of my symbi friends (similar profile as you) almost had a heart attack when he first went shopping for groceries with his wife ... so i can only imagine your situation when you get married !!!

And you have not done any shopping with a female in pune till you have done tulsi baug on a rainy saturday/sunday evening !!!

Sagar Bhanagay said...

Lol! Your last line sums it all! :). Seems like someone's had a harrowing time with this :D.
Regarding bachelor days, yah, I can sense them nearing their end too... each time I run into my mom & some relative/aunty whispering something & changing topic as I pass them, I just feel something's cooking ;).