Tandoori Texan Tales
  
Tandoori Texan Tales
Published:
11/7/2003
Format:
E-Book
Pages:
228
Size:
E-Book
ISBN:
978-1-41076-999-2
Print Type:
B/W

These six tales are filled with humor, passion, joys, sorrows and the whole gamut of human emotions that one encounters when two cultures meet. Whether you are from the Indian sub-continent or not, you will empathize with the characters. Having picked it up you will not put the book down until you have read it from cover to cover.

- "The Celebrity" is a fiction keeping the reader riveted with its theme of horror, suspense, sensuality, romance, adventure and deceit.

- "Coming To America" describes the challenges and joys of integrating into the American society, felt by a new Immigrant.

- "Sojourn" shows how one's country of birth appears when revisited after several decades, in terms of perspectives, attitudes and changes that have taken place within that country and the visitor.

- "Pot Shots At Hot Shots", describes probing questions and their tongue-in-the-cheek responses from people who guide the destinies of the World. 

- "Paradise Lost & Paradise Regained" is a very emotional true saga of how a family lost all it had in a political turmoil and regained it with grit, determination and several heart aches.

- "Tryst With A Mystery Woman" is a fiction of what it would be like to visit your great-grandma from 6 generations ago.

The Celebrity:

The First Class was very sparsely occupied, just two or three people in all those 20 odd seats. I spotted one face that struck my solar plexus like a ton of bricks. She was wearing Salvar-kameez and had covered a good portion of her head with the Dupatta. She pretended to be engrossed in a book, quite oblivious of the surroundings. The setting sun shone through the window on her side. She was wearing very large sunglasses that covered almost one-third of her face. Very obviously, she valued her privacy very dearly and did not want to be recognized.  Even then, it struck me that she seemed very familiar, as if I might have met her some where, some time.  But I just could not place a label on that face. I kept walking and came back to my seat.

The sun had set after a while. The lights had been dimmed. Only some soft lights at the aisle were kept on. Some passengers had turned on their reading lights. I stood up and walked toward the First Class cabin once again, wanting to take another look at this mysterious passenger. The reading light illuminated her face partially; it was still buried in the book. Only then slowly, it all came back to me.

She was Archana Roy. Yes, oh my God! It was indeed she. I had watched her on the movie screen so many times...............................................

I heard a gentle knock on the intermediate door. She had seen the news on her TV as well. She was flushed pink and visibly shaken. She was in tears. She pleaded if she could come in, as she was scared and shocked beyond belief. I let her come in. We were both still in the same clothes we had been in all day.

We sat on the bed resting our backs on the pillow and headboard. We were watching the breaking news, clasping our hands with horror in our eyes. I could feel that she wanted to clasp me and hold me close. But I was just too confused and emotionally broken myself to make any kind of physical response to her overtures...........................................

She asked if she could leave the intermediate door open. I readily agreed. As she went into her room she turned and told me over her shoulder to give her a wake up call at 5:30, if she was not already awake.

I could see that her bathroom door was also half-ajar. I could see her full image reflected on the large mirror at the sink. She was probably unaware of that or she might have purposely wanted it that way.

She took her Dupatta and hung it on the peg at the opposite wall. Then she slowly removed the hooks on the back of her Kameez one by one and slowly slid it over her head. Turned around and hung that also on the peg....................................... One by one everything came off and she disrobed completely. Her ivory complexion and smooth skin made her look like Neptune under moonlight.

She pulled out a brush from her handbag, stroked her dark brown hair a few times.  She took out an elastic band and bound her hair into a ponytail. Then she splashed her face with cold running water. Rubbed some soap all over to remove the makeup. She rinsed her face finally and covered it with fresh laundered hand towel from the rack. Her clean spotless natural skin without any makeup shone looking even prettier.

Then she pulled out a brown paper package from the handbag and removed a T-shirt. She pulled it over her head and let it fall all the way down to her ankles. It was a top-to-toe large T-shirt with "Welcome to Arkansas" written on the back with a picture of a sunrise behind Ozark Mountains in the front. Obviously this was the piece of article that had started the whole rigmarole that evening. Or should I say it was the cause of our survival today. I heard her switch off the light and get into her bed...........................................

 

Sojourn:

As my flight was approaching to land at the New Delhi International Airport, my thoughts were wandering back to my childhood in a sweet little town Udaipur in the state of Rajasthan.................................

We lived in a villa on the banks of the Swaroop Sagar lake, a villa that was the official residence of the Prime Minister of the local Kingdom before the princely monarchies were constitutionally abolished. The villa was several miles away from the main town and Sohan Singh our Chauffeur would drive me to and fro school. While driving back from school, he would let me sit by his side and steer the car, my legs would not reach the pedals on the floor. He would roll down the window on his side and take a few puffs. We had a perfect quid pro quo, I would tell nobody that he took puffs in the car in front of me and he would let me steer the car. Sooner or later my legs started growing and reaching the pedals. I even got my own driver's license. That was a sad day for Sohan Singh, his puffing privileges were severely curtailed then on. In fact if Sohan Singh had his way, I would not have got my license for another few years...................

The school itself was in the middle of a farm. If you looked out of the classroom window you could tell the season by the crop growing around you. Whenever we had a free period, we kids would run and sit by the well. Two blindfolded bulls would go round and round in circles drawing water from the well with a Persian Wheel and spilling it over a mud canal. I would spot a twig and follow it on the flowing water, recalling each of its stopping places with the ports of Marco Polo our teacher had just told us in the geography class. We could run into the fields and pick up fresh carrots or maize (corn?) to be roasted on charcoal, eaten with lime and salt or a stick of sugar cane to be squ

Raj Doré is a Software Engineer hailing from a very orthodox South-Indian Brahmin family. He was born in Hyderabad (Sind), now in Pakistan, before the Partition. When the Indian sub-continent was divided, he and his family fled to India. He migrated to the United States in 1977. He now lives with his wife Sumita in Dallas, Texas, U.S.A.

He has B.Sc.  (Mathematics, Physics & Geology), MA (Political Science) and MBA. Later he worked on MS (CS) at the Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas.

He is a member of MENSA and INTERTEL, the high-IQ societies. His writings have been published in their magazines as well.

He has traveled widely in Europe, South America and Asia. He knows English, Hindi, Tamil and German.

 
 


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