We can not seem to decide which word we detest more -- fautgee (death) or Inshallah (God willing).
We’ve been bombed by both these words time and again and we’ve concluded that people who litter their conversations with these words -- irrespective of age, sex, colour, class, creed -- should be treated with sufficient suspect.
We’ve written about Inshallah before and that it does not always mean that things will get done asap. More often than not, the term is thrown to buy time, defer or indefinitely postpone things that can be taken care of in the here and now. Alternatively, the term can be employed beautifully to shirk responsibility or make an empty promise.
Fautgee, too, hardly ever means what it is supposed to. It does, however, seem to be the number 1 excuse for those unable to resist the urge to take off to their gaons without notice. Our help is currently away to her village because of a cousin’s newborn’s fautgee.
It is difficult to contest fautgees, but we have learnt to challenge Inshallahs that our thrown our way.
“Inshallah I will come tomorrow and finish the work,” said the carpenter. “Why not today?” I asked. “There has been a fautgee,” he answered. When I protested, he added, "Inshallah zindagee rahee to zaroor aaongaa!" We would have given him up for the dead had we not spotted him chit-chatting on our street some days later.
Our vet has taken us for a ride several times with his Inshallah-guaranteed and sometimes free-of-cost treatments for our rescues. We nearly had a heart attack when he presented a bill of several thousand rupees some months ago. While one of the kittens was returned to us in a worse state and with no conclusive diagnosis, the other had passed away.
We are still hoping that the Inshallah of our landlord, who was to get things fixed in our house months ago, materialises one day. Our youngish landlord’s disappearance has not been because of any fautgees, but he has been busy checking in and out of the hospital for the past three years or so – or at least since we’ve known him. The only time the doctors declare him fit is when it is time for him to collect the annual rent.
Now waiting for the pizza boy to deliver on someone’s dangerously deep-throated (and I’m sure said with a jerk of the head) Inshallah…