I worked in a Biotech company for about a year. So far, it has been the best time in my life. The company had just taken in 10 new MSc graduates- all fresh, young and fun. Two of them became my best mates - M and V. Apart from the 10 of us, the rest were married and had kids. All they could talk about was,
"My mil is so strict ree, no garlic no onion abhaa.."
"My kid was so cute that day. She had a fancy dress competition and we dressed her up as a cell-phone"
"My servant did not turn up today, I had to do everything, so missed the 7.30 bus and took an auto today."
"I made peas biriyani yesterday, my daughter just ate those peas and left the rice. I don't know how to make her eat *sigh*"
Their conversation revolved around in-laws, husband, kids and their eating habits, servants and cooking.
All we ( M, V and me) could talk about was,
"OMG!!! You saw Gladrags male model hunt yesterday? That tall Gujju guy was looking so cute ya!"
"Arghhh.. where did you get those adorable sandals?"
"yeh next week that new Hritik Roshan movie is releasing want to go?"
We could think and talk only about - bags, sandals, movie, guys,chats,SHOPPING, bags, sandals- oh! Did i mention that already?!
So clearly the two groups could not mingle. We felt they were "too aunty types" and they thought we were very irresponsible girls (not true) with nothing but bags and sandals in our mind(so true). If there are two different groups there definitely will be gossip. Now, there was no way to talk about them in the company without their knowledge, unless...they had nicknames. And thats exactly what we did. We gave each one of those "aunties" a name,
Mrs J was called pati (grandmother)
She and her husband started the company. So every one would go to her if they had any problems. She was around 60 I think and very very sweet! Her hubby was, what else, thatha (grandfather).
Mrs D was amma
She was in charge of my department QC. Aioo she was a real pain- she needed to know everything- how many products we had finished testing, what we did on the weekend, when we would get married abhaa...
Mrs B was gum
This lady was my super-super senior in college. She was extremely meticulous and kept everything sickeningly neat and tidy. She expected the same from us :( She was addicted to 'Big Bubble' and would chew one every day.
Mrs R was OG or Our Gundu
This lady was married off when she was very young (we think) she always tried to imitate our dressing style and enquired where we bought our bags and salwar material. She was always on a diet (thats what she claimed) because she was plump.
Mrs Sheraz was Bipasha
She was nasty! She always always used to blame QC for anything and everything. The whole company was terrified of her. Why Bipasha? See her name it has "raaz" and Bipasha starred in that movie no?
Mr S was John
Mr S was the head of production and Bipasha ruled over him. He would always listen to her and pander her. Obviously we named him John after John Abraham.
Mrs V was Kollapi
This lady was taller than Amitabh Bachchan and complained she could not wear heels (loose contact I tell you!) "Kollapi is ladder/pole in Malayalam" said V my mallu friend, and we named her so .
Mr P was placentus
The majority of people in our company were woman (I am talking 10:1 women to men ratio). This guy we think has some serious identity crisis (or was influenced by women in our company). He would participate in all things ladies -curtains to kitchen utensils to bath essentials to candles to table cover to embroidery!!! He was working on extracting RNA from placenta so we named him placentus- very clever no?
There were more, but I don't seem to remember their original names!! We would sit commenting about them right under their noses, they wouldn't even know!!!
So our typical conversation would sound like this, "Hey I saw that amma and Bipasha talking ya. They must be saying something about us, they will now go to John for sure. Gum was telling me the other day that amma takes our side and not to worry about Bipasha..." or "Placentus was asking OG for kheer recipe ya, pakka chakka only!"
I have carried this namakarna (name keeping ceremony) tradition here also, named my prof - The Master. Simply because, there isn't anything on evolution or PCR or genes or proteins that he doesn't know! But still its not the same as doing with M and V. I miss those two immensely. V got married recently in Kerala. Missed her wedding, missed wearing a new saree, new sandal and new bag.
The joys of living abroad *sigh*.