Neighbour's howlers

The other day, I got myself and my 10 month old son ready for the usual evening outing into the play-area. The lift arrived and I pushed my son’s stroller into it and pressed the down button. As luck would have had it, the lift decided to give someone else’s command the first preference, so up we went all the way to floor number 8. A well-dressed middle-aged lady got into the space with us. As good neighbours we acknowledged each other and engaged in small talk. The conversation or should I say interview went like this:
Lady: new? Which floor?
Me: (smile) second
Lady: own house?
Me: no…(I wish for the lift to descend faster)
Lady: working? Where does your husband work?..(now, most people I meet have never heard of my hubby’s company as he is not the usual software techie. So people expecting to hear a Infosys or a Microsoft seem clueless or give an almost sympathetic look when they hear the name)
Lady: umm..oh…where is it (she is undeterred nevertheless)
As I mumble out the correct answers, my son gets fidgety and I need to calm him down. As I do so in Tamil, my mother tongue, lady is pleased to know that I am from the fellow speaking language.
Lady: boy or girl? How old? Your first? (The third part sets me wondering if the answer would set her off in giving me some family planning gyan)
Thankfully, we arrive at the destination at this point. I mumble something to her and rush out. She follows and even as we part ways she prods, Iyer or Iyengar?
Do come home sometime….
Phew! less than 5 minutes, she knew almost all the basic details about me. Another couple of minutes with her and I am sure she would have had my ancestors’ life-story before her. Call it the art of conversation or the work of over-worked paparazzi.


  1. Uma, You come across many many people like this - not only they ask you your lfie history they also start giving you gyan about how things should/can be!

    Now, I dont mind some inquisitiveness but it does get too personal sometimes!

    And looking at the ticker - your R must be upto the same tricks as my chutku :-D like you mentioned in my blog...

  2. Hey RS! welcome here..:-)

    yep R and chutku are very similar in their antics..your recent 18 month post about chutku had me nodding at every point..:-)

    happy to come across someone who has a kid around the same age as mine...


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