Janoo’s cousin Hamid and his wife Rukkiya live in England. So they call themselves Ham and Rox. And because he’s big in computers – I think so he’s a pukka computer greek — they are khaata peeta and have a seven bed kothi and a garden of twenty five kanals. But it’s all worthless because it’s not in London but in some God fortaken village near Cambridge. Might as well be in Green Land. I mean yaar, jungle mein mor nacha tau kiss nay dekha?
Also they’ve been married fourteen years and have no children because I think so they can’t. I asked Janoowhether it was his fault or hers and he said in his special sarrhial voice that he didn’t think it was anyone’s ‘fault’ and that he’d never interrogated Hamid and that we should mind our own business. I said Janoo I’m just asking. It’s no crime to wonder, okay? He said that people also wonder why we have just the one child and how do I like it when I’m pestered with intrusive questions? I said that is different. End of. As Kulchoo, my precious aklota baby says.
Rukhsana has two dogs that she calls her babies. One is an elderly jet black Labradog and the other one is a small fat bug with a flat face and popping eyes and they might as well be their babies because they look just like them. And because they want to come to Lahore this winters and because their Filipino servant couple have gone on Christmas chutti to Vanila they’re stressing about the dogs. So Ruskhsana – I refuse to call someone who was born in Gujranwala Rox – called yesterday and talked till my ears pukkoed about the problems with the dog hotelshe’d seen for her babies.
‘They but they’ll only massage my babies once a week and groom them every fortnight and they provide hardly any stimulation.’
‘So on top of daily many, paddy and blowdries,’ I asked, ‘you also want a professor to come from Cambridge to discuss politics with them? Maybe Hamid can leave some computing homework for them?’
‘No, no,’ she laughed. ‘They have 24 hour video of course…’
‘So they can watch The Crown? Or maybe they are preferring Lassie?’
‘You are funny,’ she laughed fakely. ‘But the spa is small and I worry about the temperature of the swimming pool…’
Only today have I’ve understood what people mean when they say it’s a doggy dog world. As Mummy says, you live and learn.