As we all know, Meherbai’s Mandli was a khanar-pinar group, full of life, loving to eat out, visit cinemas, nataks, art-galleries, gambhaars, et al… But the spread of the deadly Coronavirus confined them to stay home – a fate worse than death! So, they decided they’d only meet in the evening on their colony-lawn’s benches for general elaar-pelaar! Dolly and Dolla arrived first to ‘reserve’ the bench, shooing away any non-Mandli members with “aai hamera benches chey!”
Polly and his parjat wife, Paula, came next, followed by Meherbai’s next door neighbours – the obnoxious sisters – jabri Jaloo and eski-meski Aloo; abhan Aban; rarto Rohan and wife hasti Hilla. Everybody greeted each other with folded hands, “Namestey! Hum kuch nahin samajhtey!” Meherbai and Meherwanji came fashionably late saying,”Oh Khodaiji! How many more days will we be cooped-up at home?”
Abbhan Aban: The Cyrus will go away soon!
Everybody: You mean the virus?
Abbhan Aban: Same thing! It won’t last long because nothing made in China lasts long!
Polly: The virus is God’s punishment to mankind.
Rarto Rohan: On the contrary! It’s God’s blessing to husbands.
Everyone: How? How?
Rarto Rohan: See, there’s no Mall where Hilla can do shopping, no NCPA or INOX, no eating at fancy restaurants or clubs! Ketla badha paisa bachi jaai!”
Dola: You are right! It’s not virus – it’s salvation, at least for me! Dolly is so afraid of the virus that she wears a mask around the house and keeps her mouth shut for once! It’s heaven! Bheja ney shanti! I was fed-up of her continuous kit-pit and lavaro-bakaro all day!
Dolly: Just wait till you get home – today’s dinner cancelled for you as punishment!
Dola: Thank God! Anything is better than your cooking – even bread and butter!
Just then, Bomi Bevdo and Keki Khadro appeared with 10 tins of CORONA Beer.
Abbhan Aban: Arrey arrey! Soo karoj? We’ll all fall sick! CORONA beer? Couldn’t you get Tuborg or Kingfisher beer? Attar-ahari feki deo! Throw away all the 10 cans now!
Keki Khadhro: I’ll take them home to throw them away!
Rarto Rohan: No! I’ll take them home and dispose them!
Dola & Paula: The two of us will take them home and make sure that the tins are really disposed!
Bomi Bevdo: Nobody is going to dispose the beer. I’ve paid for them, so I’ll take them with me and have it with wafers and sing-chana.
Keki Khadhro: Take me along too! A friend in need is a friend indeed! And I need the beer! The weather’s getting warmer! I need some pep!
Abbhan Aban: Marghi no soup piyo! Chai piyo! Coffee piyo! Mafat no beer toh garam parey!
Suddenly, Dolla stepped into some doggy-poo! “Oh dear! My favourite CORONA walking shoes are soiled!”
Jabri Jaloo: Nakhi deo! Feki deo! Kaibi CORONA nam nu hoi toh say Alaa-Balaa-Door and throw that thing away!”
Keki Khadhro pulled-off poor Dolla’s walking shoe and flung it away… only to land on Homi Homeopath’s lap, who immediately boi-charaavi-ne-maravaa ayo!
Homi: Kehva su magoj? Parsi Colony ma rehta avrej-ke? Here I was sitting quietly on this bench, making sugar-pills for my unsuspecting patients and this comes like a flying-saucer and falls in my lap!
Abhaan Aban: Shoe falling on you is very lucky!
Homi: Only if it’s a horse-shoe! Not a joona-purana-ghasaila-faatela-doggy-poo-na-bharailu-shoe. Hoon tamara par case maadas! Baddhaney court ma lai-javas!
Everybody: BPP ma-chheo-ke? Jara-jara ma case karva nikloj!
Homi: Kaley mahra Sapurji Solicitor ni notice aavsey!
Abhaan Aban: We will do akhara and not notice your notice!
Dolly: Yes, we will send you counter-notice for not letting us sit here in peace!
Jabri Jaloo: You should be arrested for making home-made sugar-pills and passing them off as homeopathy medicine. Further, you claim your pills are effective against Coronavirus! Why do you make such bogus claims?
Homi Homeopath realised his game was up and decided to beat an honourable retreat with what little honour was left in him. But already, there was rang-ma-bhang! The atmosphere was spoilt and everyone decided to disperse. But, no koti-kissi – only elbow-touching and see you tomorrow at same bench!
Everyone walked home while Dolla limped home with one Corona shoe on the foot and the other in his hand. As he and Dolly climbed-up the three floors to their flat, their first-floor neighbor – Freny Fatakri said, “Dolla bhai, kachra-ni-gari ma farva gaila su? Vasey-vaas maroj!”
Second floor Soonamai-Sample: Marerey! Tamey ketla divas thi nahya nathi? Chheee!
Soona mai’s son Cyrus the Virus: Hey Bro! High time you had a bath! Want me to come-up and help you with it?
Dola’s Dolly: No. You remain in the closet – don’t come out of it and hit on my Dolla! He is straight!
And they got home and before all else, they first washed their hands… as all of us should! Stay safe everybody!