An embarrassing situation is one where a man is in a fix. He is not in a position to control it. One such situation is narrated here. 

I was coming home to attend my sister’s marriage. I had missed many marriages since I remained outside in different state. This time I had to make time as she was my only sister and my father’s letter had made it clear that it was mandatory to attend. I had covered almost the whole distance except the last leg the journey. As usual the trains in the North Bihar were crowded. Over and above, it was the marriage season. 

Piyush, my IIT friend, joined me in Delhi. We made a dash for a first class compartment and managed to have two seats. Among others there was one passenger who endeavored to make the distinguished. He was of short height but self-conscious. He behaved as if the whole compartment belonged to him. The young chap with him served him like a page-boy. We learnt that the train would take some time to start. At my friend’s suggestion we took a stroll on the platform and bought a packet of cigarettes. One railway staff saluted the man which made it clear that he was some important officer. 

The others in the compartment too, observed a respectful distance with this man. Piyush, however, disliked this behaviour. He told me that thus we demean our own selves. This is the direct evil effect of the British rule. Whoever pretends to be like an Englishman becomes an object of admiration for us? 

We entered the compartment and took our seats. We lit up two cigarettes and were sitting just opposite to the man. Piyush noticed that the man had removed my airbag from its position and put his fibre suitcase. He promptly brought down the man’s bag and put mine there. The man asked his chap to throw out my bag. But Piyush was tall and too strong built and prevented the boy. The man abused us in English and we retorted. The train was in motion. Piyush taunted him for his stupid imitation of British manners. The man told that angry young men like him are the nation’s curse. 

The situation was coming to a head. In the next station the man complained to the railway police against us. Because he was a big officer the police decided one-sided to remove our luggage, I resisted and Piyush, in a fit of anger, lifted the man off the earth and posed to throw him into the platform.

It made matters worse. The police got positive proof of our misconduct. I realized that there was no other way but to withdraw. I took the officer aside and requested him to be lenient as we were going home to attend my sister’s marriage after a long time. We changed into a different compartment. Piyush fretted and fumed like a hungry lion. 

It was the marriage day. Piyush and I were allotted one separate room in our fairly big mansion. After completing the formalities of bowing before seniors I took Piyush to be introduced to my sister. A small boy interrupted our chat and said that we were to present ourselves to be introduced to the eldest son-in-law of my family. I had long been out and little knew who was who. Many guests were pouring in and were getting lost in the big household of our joint family.

We entered the room of the guest. My father told us that Sanjay was in the bathroom. He said that he was eager to see me, as I was a blue-eyed boy of the establishment for my brilliant record and career. Father began to ask Piyush about his life in IIT and other matters. 

In the midst of these the guest came out. His head was down and covered as he was mopping it with his napkin. We both stood up. My father drew his attention towards us. As he revealed his face we were totally unnerved to discover that he was none other than the little man whom Piyush had lifted to throw out. We remained there stock-still for quite some time as father performed his introduction formality. We even forgot that we should bow to him. How could we, we were his sworn opponents, if he discloses?  Piyush felt it would be even worse than the police lockup. To throw out the eldest son-in-law, and the culprit none but a friend of his brother-in-law!


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