Sir, I Won’t Send Milk From Tomorrow

March 3, 2011 by Rajasir  
Published in Marriage

If what you say is correct, I will leave the office job tomorrow. I would love to look after her boutique…

Sir, I won’t Send Milk from Tomorrow

Before going to bed, every night, I dial her number, just to listen ‘subscriber is not available’ and to confirm that she was busy talking to someone else.

But that day when I dialed her number, Rambha was available and she said, “Sir, how come you phoned me at this time of the night?”

“Renu has just informed me that Kavita’s marriage has been fixed,” said I, trying to conceal my delight, resulting from the conversation.

Renu is my sister and Kavita is her daughter. My daughter Renu had brought Rambha to me and she had said, “Brother, this is Rambha and she will look after your assignments, your phone calls, emails, and postage, etc.”

Rambha laughed and said, “Who is the husband? Harish Pathak if I am not wrong?”

“How do you know?”

“Everyone in his office knew about it.”

Rambha had kept Kavita under her observation for a few months. She was a strange woman, this Rambha, and she kept on changing jobs, sometimes she would be a receptionist in a private office and on other occasion she would be a teacher in a new school. She had also worked as a salesgirl in different shops. My sister Renu had met Rambha through her daughter Kavita.

“You never told me about it,” I wanted to continue that talk. Rambha’s voice brought me an unspoken comfort and I liked talking to her.

“How could I tell you, Sir? Had I told you, it would have been betrayal of trust on my part.”

“Oh, I see,” I muttered softly. Rambha’s world was quite limited and she did not actually know much about my world.

“Would you like to accompany me to Kavita’s marriage?”

My wife never attended the marriages in my parental home. She had not gone to the marriages of my sisters and their children. She believed that she was doing her bit sitting in my house.

“I would love to, Sir,” Rambha was excited. I am highly grateful to Kavita because I met you through her.

“Won’t your family members object?” said I.

Rambha was married. Her father and her husband worked in the same office. Her husband was the head clerk and she had to marry him because her father liked the match. She had a little daughter, six years old. Her in-laws also lived with them.

“No, Sir, they won’t object. They know that I can be asked to go out of station through the office. There is nothing to worry,” said Rambha.

“And you also think that going to Kavita’s marriage with me is a part of your official duty?” said I, trying to explore her.

“No, Sir, I know it. You are so kind to me. You have already done so much for me.”

Rambha did not know that I was obliged to her. My doctor had told me not to inform her that my medicines had been reduced because of my proximity to Rambha.

“All right, tell me what are you doing now?”

“I am washing clothes, Sir.”

“What? It is a very cold night and you are washing clothes!”

“Sir, my mother-in-law is not well, so I decided to wash clothes today.”

“Where is your husband?”

“He is asleep. He often does overtime in his office. He turns in right after dinner.”

In her early days of job in my factory, Rambha’s husband dropped her in my office every day. I did not like the way he entered my office and greeted me. I told Rambha to tell him that entering my office without my permission could send a wrong message to other staff members and workers in the factory.

I never liked her husband, for he was quite narrow-minded and flatterer. Though Rambha was from a mediocre background, her demeanour and the manner of presenting herself raised her.

“When will you sleep?” I said to her.

Before I could get her answer, the door to my bedroom opened. My daughter was standing there.

She shouted, “Do you know how mother is feeling?”

“Why? What happened?” I switched off the mobile and placed it on the table and rushed out of the room.

My wife slept in her separate room. I found her on the bed, and there was no movement in her body. I touched her head and she opened her eyes. She began to weep. There was nothing new in it because after a row she pretended to be sick.

That morning she had quarreled with me and our daughter had assisted her in that fight. My sister Indu was the topic of argument. My wife had seen my sister in the market. She had borrowed my car. We have three cars and there is no problem but if anyone from my family uses them my wife is furious.

My sister had left her husband and she had come to live with my parents. My wife was angry because I had not informed her that my sister was in town.

“Shut up!” I shouted.

“No, I won’t! Your sister is in town and I don’t know anything about it?”

“Because I wanted to save her from you, from your horrible questioning!” I was ready for the debate.

“I am horrible!” my wife shouted, “and your sister is little Red Riding Hood?”

“Papa, you always keep your sisters higher than us. They never helped you when you were in trouble,” my daughter gave her support to my wife.

My wife and my daughter never behaved properly with my sisters and my parents.

“This is the worst period of my life. My servant brings my breakfast, my lunch comes from a restaurant, and I take dinner in the club.”

“It is so because you are a bad industrialist, a bad husband, and a very bad father,” my daughter aided my wife.

“Keep quiet!” I shouted. In a way, she had reminded me that my factory was running at loss and I was not able to do anything.

I did not continue the argument because I knew that the mother and daughter would dig the graves and show me the reality. My father had started the factory but after about three years we suffered a huge loss on account of misappropriation of funds by our manger. We were on the verge of bankruptcy when my prospective father-in-law rescued us. He loaned a huge amount of money to my father and I was compelled to marry his daughter. My wife often reminded me that I had never paid that loan back and I had to be obliged to her parents.

“Mother is really sick, Papa, call doctor Malhotra,” said my daughter.

The doctor examined my wife and said, “She is very serious and she must be hospitalized immediately. It is her heart…”

“How much money should we carry?” my daughter looked in my direction.

My wife had her own boutique in front of our house and she had a fat income from the sales of the dresses. My daughter assisted my wife in her business.

“Doctor, won’t my credit card work?” said I, looking in the doctor’s direction.

“It will, please hurry up. We can’t waste a single minute,” said the doctor.

We placed her gently on the back seat of my car. The doctor followed us in his own car. Having gone a little distance, my daughter shouted, “Papa, stop the car, and stop doctor uncle’s car!”

“Why? What happened?”

“Mama is not breathing…”

I jammed on the brake and the car stopped. The doctor stopped his car too and rushed to our car. He touched her pulse and then examined her eyes with his professional torch light.

“Sorry, she is no more…”

“Mama…Mama…” my daughter began to shout.

We brought her back to our house. I entered the bathroom and began to weep. I don’t know whether I was weeping because of the death of my wife or because I had not been able to save her.

When I came out, my eyes fell on my mobile.

I dialed her number.

“She is dead…”

“You must be joking, Sir!” she laughed.

“No, I am not joking, she is dead. She died a few minutes ago…”

“If what you say is correct, I will leave the office job tomorrow. I would love to look after her boutique…”

“You will have to wait for two months. After the marriage of my daughter…”

“Did the doctor suspect anything?”

“No, he said it was a heart attack…”

“So now I won’t have to send milk for her coffee from tomorrow.”

“Yes, she was the only one who liked coffee…”

I disconnected the mobile and heaved a sigh of relief. I had a frightening smile on my face when I looked in the mirror above the table.

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One Response to “Sir, I Won’t Send Milk From Tomorrow”
  1. Rohana Says:

    Nice story! You are a master story teller, Sir Raja.


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