Tickety-boo to you!  Words from India

        The words in red are borrowed from the Hindi language. And you thought they were English words!  

   ONCE upon a time there was a pundit named Neprahu who lived in a jungle in a big, breezy bungalow on the banks of a beautiful lake.  One morning while was practicing his yoga in his pajamas—sitting on the veranda and dreaming of chutney, ginger, curry and nirvana — Neprahu saw someone coming across the lake in a dinghy.  “Who could that be so early in the morning?” he thought. 

Words you thought
were “English”

Photo courtesy Pawan Sharma, Unsplash!


     “Kavita!” he called out to his wife, “We have company. Quick! Get me my new khaki dungarees and blue bandanna. I can’t greet guests in my pajamas!” But, Kavita, hearing that they had guests, ran off to shampoo her hair. Soon she reappeared wear- ing her multi-colored calico sari and her best bangles

     Before Kavita could give Neprahu his blue bandanna (she forgot his khaki dungarees) the person in the dinghy (having heard everything they said) called out, “Tickety-boo! [It’s all right!] There’s no need for all the hullabaloo!  I’m not the Maharaja. And I’m not a thug come to steal your loot.  I’m your Uncle Bertie, back from Britain!  I’ve brought you a cheetah I just bought at the bazaar. What could be better? And for you, sweet Kavita, I snatched up a cashmere shawl.”

     “Well, if it isn’t Uncle Bertie!”

     “The very one!” cried Uncle Bertie. 

     Just then, little Seema appeared on the veranda with punch for her father and uncle. Uncle Bertie unloaded the loot from the dinghy and sat down on a cushy cot to sip his peach punch. “Ah, Seema. My favorite, only niece! Wait 'til you see what I’ve brought you. It’s your very own mongoose who loves mangoes.”

     Seema looked at the mongoose and said, “Oh, dear Uncle Bertie, thank you, but I was really hoping for a new 3D avatar for my cell phone.”
     Uncle Bertie smiled and said, “The
mongoose is 3D.  Just call him Avatar and then you’ll be happy.”  Uncle Bertie then reached into his pocket and said, “I have a chit [short note] for you, Neprahu, from your guru.”

     The note read:  

     When a guest arrives like a  juggernaut typhoon, keep cool.  Tell him you must, unfor- tunately, excuse yourself for the moment to say your many mellifluous mantras.  

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 ©InterestEng. July 2013  §  The stories in the magazine portion of the site are written by English language learners. Stories are corrected by a native English speaker.  § Photos are staff or used with permission.  §  To contact us:  go.gently.on@gmail.com