Humor in Uniform – “SLEEPING BEAUTY”

Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: Humor in Uniform – MANTRA FOR MILITARY WIVES by “SLEEPING BEAUTY” (Veteran “Faujan” Army Wife).

Link to my original post in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal: 
http://karvediat.blogspot.in/201…

HUMOR IN AND OUT OF UNIFORM

Unforgettable Memories of Curzon Road Apartments New Delhi

MANTRA FOR MILITARY WIVES by “SLEEPING BEAUTY” (Veteran “Faujan” Army Wife)
A Spoof
By
VIKRAM KARVE

There are Two kinds of Military Wives – “clued-up” and “clueless”

The first category comprises “clued-up” military wives:

1. Ladies who are aware of Life in the Military – girls who come from a military background.

These include daughters of military officers – or girls who have seen the life of a military wife from close quarters as they have a relative or friend in the military or they know someone married to a military man – or because they have lived in the proximity of a military cantonment and are acquainted with the “Fauji” lifestyle. 

Nowadays – with the increasing number of “marriages in uniform” – you even have military wives who are serving military officers – who are “know-it-all” on matters military.

There is a second category of “clueless” newly married military wives:

2. Ladies who have had absolutely no exposure to Military Life – and hence these young naive and innocent girls are completely oblivious of the unique military culture and are totally unaware of the kind of social life a military wife has to lead.

“Sleeping Beauty” belonged to the second category – she was a newly married “clueless” army wife.

Yes – “Sleeping Beauty” did not have a clue about army life.

She was born in a family of academicians – and brought up in the tranquil environment of a university campus in a small town.

Since it was not a military town – the only persons she saw in uniform were the odd NCC officers on the university campus.

Of intellectual bent of mind and possessing an academic nature herself – she was pursuing her Ph.D. – when there was a marriage proposal for her from an army officer Captain “X”.

Things moved fast – and suddenly she found herself married to Captain “X” – and she arrived with her newly wedded husband at the SP Marg Officers Mess in New Delhi.

In fact – it was in the same week that I arrived with my newly wedded wife at the same SP Marg Officers Mess in New Delhi – where we – Captain “X” and Me – were living as happy bachelors for around one year – before we got married – in the same month – almost on the same day.

In those good-old “pre-jointmanship” days – the SP Marg Officers Mess was an inter-service combined Army-Navy Officers Mess – like Kota House.

But this happy situation – of bonhomie and camaraderie – did not last forever – since a few years later – in an act of “jointmanship” – the Army evicted Naval Officers from the SP Marg Officers Mess – and – in a retaliatory gesture of “jointmanship” – the Navy evicted all Army Officers from the Kota House Officers Mess.

Even today – as I hark back – I fondly cherish my glorious days at SP Marg Officers Mess – the atmosphere of bonhomie in the evenings when we all sat together on the lawns or in the bar enjoying our drinks.

During my SP Marg days – I made friends with a number of Army Officers – and one of my good friends from the Army was Captain “X”.

On New Year’s Eve – we sat at the DSOI in Dhaula Kuan – downing peg after peg of rum – and suddenly we decided that we both had endured enough of bachelorhood – and it was time to get married.

Within 6 months – we – Captain “X” and Me – were sitting together with our newly-wedded wives on the lawns of SP Marg Officers Mess.

Soon – we shifted to Curzon Road Apartments – where we were next door neighbours.

Our erstwhile mess-mates from SP Marg would invariably “bounce” us – whenever they were in the vicinity at Connaught Place or India Gate.

These bachelor officers would suddenly land up unannounced any time of the day and night – demanding food and drink – sometimes even at the oddest of hours – like on their way back from a late night movie show.

These impromptu food and booze sessions – which lasted till the wee hours of the morning – came as a big surprise for “Sleeping Beauty” – who was used to the placid social life of a small town university campus – where “early to bed and early to rise” – was the norm.

Having never seen even a drop of alcohol in her parents’ home – these unrestrained drinking binges – where everyone consumed enormous amounts of alcohol – and many officers got high and behaved with wild abandon – caused her even greater cultural shock.

However – she adapted herself to her new life – and to compensate for the sleep deprivation due to the late nights – she spent most of her time sleeping during the day – hence I gave her the nickname: “Sleeping Beauty”.

One evening – around 7 PM – on my way to my flat – I saw “Sleeping Beauty” eating her dinner.

Those of you who have lived in Curzon Road Apartments will know that the Kitchenette of the one room flat was located at the entrance – which opened into the corridor – and we mostly kept the door open for cross-ventilation.

So – as I walked down the corridor to my flat – I saw “Sleeping Beauty” standing before the gas stove with a plate in her hand.

The plate was filled with generous amounts of a variety of dishes – and she was merrily eating away to glory.

“Having dinner so early?” I asked her.

“No. No. I am just tasting the food to see it is okay,” she said.

“Tasting? So much?” I asked, pointing towards her filled plate.

“Sleeping Beauty” laughed – and she said: “Okay. I will tell you. My husband has invited his boss and all the officers in his office and their wives for dinner. By the time they finish their drinks and have dinner – it will be past midnight – and I will feel very hungry by then. So – I am having my dinner now itself.”

“You are eating your dinner now itself – even before the guests arrive?” I asked her, flabbergasted.

“Yes. I am going to have my full meal – even the sweet dish. Then – it does not matter how long they keep drinking – and whatever time they eat their food. I will have a second round of food with them just to keep up appearances – or maybe I will actually be a bit hungry by then,” she said.

I marveled at the earthy wisdom of the young bride – it was so breathtaking in its simplicity – a useful mantra for all hostesses – especially for military wives who have to entertain a lot.

I will always thank “Sleeping Beauty” for this pointer for hostesses – which I suggested to my wife and many ladies.

In fact – I started following Sleeping Beauty’s mantra myself – once I joined the ranks of sober teetotallers – who anxiously wait for dinner to be served – while the boozers keep endlessly downing drink after drink.

So – if you are “fauji” wife – whenever you invite people for dinner – you know what to do.

Happy Wining and Dining in Uniform !!! 

VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
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Disclaimer:
1. This story is a spoof, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
2. All Stories in this Blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

Copyright © Vikram Karve (all rights reserved)


This Story was written by me more than one year ago in early 2014 and First Posted by me Vikram Karve in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal Blog at 6/16/2014 02:15:00 PM at url: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/201…  and  reposted on January 9, 2015 at url: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/201…

Now Re-Posted by Vikram Karve at 7/06/2015 10:06:00 PM

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