Truth about cats and dogs
The cashier at Agha’s engages in a friendly banter with a customer. I wait for my turn & get engrossed in checking out the top quality scenery. Agha’s never disappoints. My brain plays “killer queen” in the background.
The customer invades my personal space. He is the-easily-excitable type or maybe just excited. I learn that he is the outdoor man for a gora executive at Shell.
“Sorry saab” he apologizes sincerely as I smile at his trolley full of cartons. “My cashier friend here and I were telling each other what our families ate every day. Saab each one of these cans costs Rs. 85. Each carton has 12 boxes and I am buying 3 cartons for the ten cats that the boss has at home”. It must have been a regular chore for him but his laugh seemed genuine as he pulled out an envelope with 4000 rs. “These cats are kept in two air conditioned rooms” he adds
“Including you, how many dogs does the boss have?”, quips in the cashier.
“Including me, the boss has 4 german shepards”, another hearty chuckle from these two hardworking men reconciling with the madness around them.
I come out of Agha's and rain drops of the first monsoon rain drench my shirt. The smell of wet earth evokes memories of years past, paper boats and whole evenings spent around candles watching patangas consumed by flames and somewhere in the city, multinational cats purr in air-conditioned rooms.