we walk into a party. the hostess, decked up in a sari, comes ahead, gives me a warm hug, settles me down to a juice and starts the introduction... "mrs B", "mrs K", "mrs S"... and herself as "mrs M". while it is equal treatment for all the women present, none of them even faintly protested and said, "i am...". did those women not have names? or their names were any less than that of their husbands?
i could not keep quiet for very long and said in the next flow of introductions, "i am ..., work as a journalist."
one woman asked me, "journalist? and your husband?" before i could open my mouth, mrs m came to my rescue and said, "she is mrs B."
so when the third round of introduction started, i decided to put both the things together and said, "i am..., am a journalist and my husband is B... there that tall guy with the specs." needless to say, the last bit was what registered and the two other bits of information were lost.
anger is a modest term to describe what i felt... until one little girl comes and asks me, "are you A's mother? she asked me to ask you for her scarf."
to this little girl, i was "A's mother", to their mothers, i was nameless "mrs B"... where the hell was i?
and to top it all, B introduces me to someone as "my wife"... when i loudly butted in and said, "i have a name too and that is..."
The Battle for Bengal
3 weeks ago