Frenymai And The Fake Godman

Frenymai was a very adventurous lady of 80, full of life, who liked to try out anything and everything she read in newspapers, Facebook or Instagram. She had already tried her hand at Yoga, Reiki, Pranic Healing, Mudras, Swimming, Skating, Golf, Dancing – in short, everything except stepping into the kitchen and cooking a decent meal for her husband, Falibawa.

The spark had gone out of their long and boring marriage, but Falibawa couldn’t care less. He told the neighbours jokingly, “Mickey Mouse is mickimysing herself!” Being a joker, Falibawa even wore his wedding ring on the wrong hand and in the wrong finger, since, in his own words, he had married the wrong woman!!

Falibawa loved food. In fact, he was a complete foodie, while Frenymai couldn’t break open an egg. Even if she could, she didn’t know the way to the kitchen. So she kept a cook who turned out to be very expensive because, apart from his big-fat salary, the kababs and the cutlets from the kitchen started vanishing like the magic-show of K. Lal and his Maya-Jaal!

 Unable to take it anymore, Falibawa yelled at his bitter-half, “Why can’t you cook like other wives so we can sack the cook and save some money?” Frenymai immediately retorted, “Why can’t you kiss passionately like other husbands, so we can sack the driver?” OUCH!! That hurt our cold and frigid Falibawa like a dentist’s drill on an exposed nerve but he took it in his stride because he knew that his wife was saying it just in retaliation.

These days Frenymai was into pranik healing, meditation, tarot-cards, past-life regression and visited a God-man who was a dhongi-baba, a cheap roadside magician who could produce flowers from thin air (actually his sleeves) for his female followers. Gullible Frenymai spoke very highly of him.

Falibawa: What is lacking in our great religion that silly people like you visit these gurus, babas and other so-called Godmen?

Frenymai: I follow our religion too, but this babaji has some special powers! He actually found Pilamai’s popat after he had flown away from the cage!

Falibawa: Kappaal taaru! Pilamai herself told me that her last popat was a male and the one that guruji found was a female. He is a fake, a fraud, a dhongi!

 One morning, over sips of tea, Frenymai informed Falibawa, “You know, in yesterday’s lecture, Babaji said in heaven, husbands and wives live separately.”  “Yes dear”, said Fali. “That’s why it’s called ‘Heaven’!” “Stop your silly jokes and visit my Guruji Baba. You’ll feel uplifted!”

“No! I believe only in my Zoroastrian religion. No Baba business for me. Besides, if I come there, I’ll expose your Baba in no time.” Did Frenymai give up? No way. She went on and on about some press-walas, TV-walas and others who called Babaji a ‘Mahapurush’, as if he was some Pavitra Vishvamitra, giving bhashans as if he were the messenger of God!

To finally put an end to all this nonsense and for his own peace of mind, Falibawa agreed to accompany Frenymai to Dhongi-Baba’s darshan. As they sat down, Falibawa joked “Baba, you must be unmarried. You look too happy to be married.”

Everyone laughed while some devotees said, “Shoo! Keep quiet!”

Now, Baba was a bit of an actor (He was once an extra in Hindi Films), so to impress his new devotees, he started acting like a martyr, saying “Hey Bhagwan! Mujhe dukh do, dard do, kasht do, tension do, saari duniya ke problems do!”

Falibawa saw through all these histrionics and shouted from the audience, “Baba, ek Biwi maang lo na, aap ki sab samasya dur ho jaegi!”

The men from the audience clapped and cheered. “Waah, Bawaji waah! Kya baat kahi!”

Dhongi Baba got angry and threatened, “I have powers. I can make anyone disappear. You want to test my powers?”

Falibawa: Yes, I want to test your powers. Can you make Frenymai disappear?

Frenymai was the center of attraction now and could not bear the humiliation any longer. She got up and went home. The next day, Frenymai went to the Baba with cash, dry fruits and mithais and apologised profusely to him. Baba blessed her by giving her some green chillies, limboos and a coconut. “Only for you, keep these away from non-believers like your husband and enjoy good luck.”

Frenymai hid everything in one corner of her kitchen, covering it up with old newspapers. As luck would have it, Falibawa wanted a certain old article which had appeared in Parsi Times and naturally, went through the old issues. And it is easy to predict what he found – coconut, limboos and chillies! He promptly ordered his cook to make a rich coconut curry, some fresh lime and some green chillies-mint chutney.

By the time this article goes to the printing press, Frenymai has not discovered that Baba’s prasad is missing and hence peace has prevailed in the house of Falibawa and Frenymai. What will happen next when Frenymai discovers that her precious prasad is missing? Now, that’s another story for another Saturday!!


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