My roomie and I have been working very late hours. And plodding through the graveyard shift does affect the mussed cerebrum, as we have found out lately.
We usually write a note to our bai asking her to cook for us. These instructions are written in italicized Hindi with calypso spellings. Oddly enough, our bai understands. Of course, sometimes there is occasion for wry humor. Like when we told her to make four chapattis and had written 4 in Hindi. She read our four as eight in English. My roomie and I had a big lunch that day.
Or like the time both of us decided to eat more leafy vegetables. We often discuss herbivorous victuals when we’re on the terrace gazing at broccoli-like tree-tops. The next day, we wrote to our bai asking her to make palak (spinach). She prepared it and kept a turmeric dusted note, ‘That was methi.’ I don’t think she was familiar with smileys, but if you looked closely, you could see a yellow stained curve.
Today, my roomie and I get home to find some fresh veggies in the kitchen. When my roomie is tired and/or deranged, she talks with an accent. (A cross between Irish and Scottish, but what she believes to be American).
‘She’s got ‘bataata’ (butt-at-aa), ‘tamatur’ (tum-at-err), ‘methi’ (may-tee),etc.’, states Z coquettishly. Then she laughs hysterically while I hunt for my charger. It’s under the onions. (Onions cook faster if left in close proximity to a Nokia charger – and they say I can’t cook.)
“You know, if we pronounce vegetables like that, she won’t know what to make,” chortles Z.
“Stupid, how are you going to write with an accent?”, I ask.
Then we both fall to the floor laughing like the surviving witches of Macbeth, each holding an onion and a potato.
It can now be said with some degree of certainty…we are not normal anymore.