This happened to my friend and her sister when they went to visit their brother in USA. The elite area where their brother lived had not been provided with so much entertainment as this before and the two sisters became the uncrowned drama-queens of that town.
My friend ‘s brother was doctor He was as intelligent as he was amiable. But she liked to call him crazy. Why? Because the good doctor had given his four year old son a real SKELETON to play with.
“Of all the toys a little kid would have enjoyed, my brother had to go and present him with a skeleton.” She would complain in mock anger.
This skeleton was the cause of the brouhaha that took place on the day they arrived, culminating in the police breaking into their brother’s house.
A Real Comedy of Errors!
On the first day, after dinner, the two sisters went up to the guest room to sleep. The little nephew came to wish them good night. With him, he came dragging the three foot high skeleton.
The two Desi aunts had no prior knowledge about his bizarre toy. Seeing the skeleton with the grotesque skull and limbs akimbo , the two ladies did what any self respecting Indian woman would would have done when confronted with such a monstrosity.
Their screams rang loud and clear, piercing the stillness of the night and setting off a flurry of activity.
A police patrol car was just outside their house at that very moment. The conscientious officers, were immediately out of their car and running towards the source of those screams to investigate.
Meanwhile, the boy hearing his aunts hollering became frightened. He set up a howl of his own and ran to find his mother. The police officers outside jumped to conclusions on hearing a kid’s voice. They suspected nothing less than murder .
Drawing out their guns they began to climb a pipe outside the window.
The boy’s parents hearing the alarming cries from the room above, ran to it and were just in time to catch sight of the police peering in through the window, guns pointing.
Seeing the faces of two men appearing outside their first floor window, it was the boy’s mother’s turn to let out a horrific cry.
This was too much for the police. Thinking that some heinous crime was being committed inside, they smashed the window open and jumped into the room. They had cocked their pistols and were in a position to take aim and shoot.
It was a scene right out of a crime thriller.
But much to the chagrin of the officers who had made that dramatic entry, there was no criminal activity taking place and no seasoned criminal to over power. No one to yell the climatic words, “stick’em up.” or whatever it is the law enforcement says at a time like this.
No crime taking place. Just a crazy Indian family who were as surprised as them.
What? What? What?
Bewilderment was written large on everyone’s faces.
After things had quietened down and the air had cleared and the frightened boy pacified, the police interrogated the ladies.
When they heard the reason for the hullabaloo, they became furious.They had risked life and limb to climb a pipe and jump to the call of duty and what did they find?
Just some silly women in their night clothes who, now that they were safe, were trying desperately to quell the laughter that was rising up in them.
This was too much and the officers gave the lot an ear full of reprimands.
“We could have you arrested you know, for disturbing the peace of our area.” They said with much indignation, angry at having their heroism brought to naught.
It took the doctor some time and effort to pacify the officers and send them away with sincere apologies.
While this was happening inside the house, the outside had also become a scene of furor and activity.
The police had left the siren on, in their vehicle. The noise from the siren, coupled with the flashing of blue and red lights and the sound of breaking glass had unsettled the whole neighborhood.
Lights were switched on in the houses. Dogs started barking and people were shouting across to each other to know what was happening. Many of the neighbors had ventured outside to find out who had violated the law.
It was quite a melee and a free for all, outside as well.
What? What? What?
The question was asked again.
After hearing from the officers about ‘them crazy Indian ladies’ and their stint with a skeleton, the crowd dispersed. Slowly. One by one. Some laughed. Some were annoyed. When every one had gone home, the police vehicle left the scene, carrying some disgruntled men.
Peace reigned once more.
But in the small town where the brother lived, every one knew everyone else and the visitors from India became an over night sensation. They were talked about, discussed and their behavior dissected. Most of all they were recognized.
To the end of their stay, where ever they went, people would wave to them and give them wide smiles and understanding nods.
Their popularity increased so much that their doctor brother was fond of telling his family and friends:
“Even as a renowned heart specialist, I did not become as popular in my town as my darling sisters who screamed at a skeleton.”
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