“2 cubes of ice please” I order. He is smiling. He knows that too. This just can’t get better. Wait, where are the women?
“Where are the women?” I ask. He is smiling again. I hope they have women here. An old man needs his scotch but he needs the sight of pretty women around him too, oh and also his friends. I am missing that old useless Pundit Preetam Sharma who kept boasting about how great Hinduism is. He must be somewhere around here. It will be wonderful to meet that “Chootiya” after so long. And Meer Baig, I miss him too. He was the one who lost the count of the number of mangoes he had eaten and the number of women he bedded. Good fellows, both of them…My sunset club mates.
“Where are the women?” I think.
The scotch is nice. The scotch is always nice. The journey was tiresome, not because the coach was not cozy but because I was anxious. I saw them wailing near my body. I guess they’ll take me to Nigambodh Ghat, that’s where they take everyone. I hope there is a nice funeral procession and people cry for real. It is an open secret that I rarely cried at cremations. But I hope they cry. I was an important man. I glorified lust, not an easy thing to do you see!
“Where are the women?” I wonder.
They also have books here. They have a huge collection in fact. Do they have Ghalib here? I forgot to translate some of his couplets. I see an attendant there. I should ask him.
“Hey! Do you have Ghalib here?” I ask. He smiles at me assuredly. Oh they do have Ghalib here. They have Meer Taqi Meer too. I’ll translate a couple of Ghalib‘s couplets after this peg.
“Where are the women?” I think over.
The scotch always transports me back in time. Transports me to 1953, when I wrote the “History of Sikhs” and 1954 when “Train to Pakistan” was released, and “I Shall Not Hear the Nightingale” and “Delhi” and “The Company of Women” and “Truth, Love and a Little Malice” and “With Malice towards One and All” and “Burial at the Sea” and “The Sunset Club”. All other just passed their lives, I lived it. Chootiyaas they were, big Phuddoos all of them. I do not have any complaints. I am too cool to complaint.
“But where are the women?” I shout.
The bearer comes running. He is laughing. I laugh heartily too. They have always titled me a Tharki Buddhha. Some called me Rangeen Sardaar. And now I see a woman and another. They are full-bosomed and their bottoms heavy and rounded like the Bara Gumbaz of Lodhi Garden. I don’t have any complaints at all. I think I’ll enjoy my after life. But you all, Do miss me.
Khushwant Singh :)
PS: Sorry for the abusive and obscene language but it is no mean task to recreate Khushwant. I tried my best, hope you like it.