par1: Zaibubisa’s Story


Zaibunisa wears a gharara everyday. She likes to keep her shirt long, till her knees and the gharara very loose so that it almost resembles a skirt. Over it she covers her head with an orange coloured dupatta, one end of which is tucked in behind her ear. The other end lies somewhere near her knee, and in a knot in that piece of fabric she
keeps her pan. Zaibu loves pan, and her beetlenut stained teeth are proof of the fact. The sickening sweet smell of beetlenut lingers on to her clothes, her henna coloured hair and of course, that twisted mouth of hers.
Zaibu starts her day early. She prays in the morning, goes to the tubewell near by to fill water in her earthen pots, and then feeds her chickens. After she is done she
brews herself a cup of tea. She likes it strong and cooks it with a lot of milk. Mostly this is all she has for breakfast, unless Abdul is home.
When Abdul comes to the small village of Nanagar, she makes him fresh hot parathas which she covers lavishly with a thick layer of her home-made ghee. She fusses over Abdul, asks him to take third and fourth helpings, and complains that the city air is making his bones weak.
After pan Abdul is someone she can not dream of living without. Everytime he leaves for Karachi, she sheds a storm of tears, often hugging and kissing him too much. And
the time he is not home she spends thinking about him, and longs for him to return.
But for Abdul, his attachment to Zaibu is different……….
to be continued
Gharara- very loose pants that almost
resemble a skirt
Paratha- pita bread cooked with a lot
of oil
Ghee- fat from milk used for oiling or
adding flavour to a dish
Pan- Beetlenut, tobacco and other sweet
spices rolled up in a speacial type of leaf.
Dupatta- a long rectangular cloth that
sub-continental women use to cover themselves
This was something I wrote in 2010 for Creative Writing Workshop conducted by Kate Pullinger, an American author. The second part came to me a few days later

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