Choonker



A young man paid a visit to his in-laws. After exchanging greetings and pleasantries with her, the mother-in-law repaired to the kitchen to prepare, as is customary, ‘choicest’ dishes for the son-in-law who sat in the room next door. It so happened that the mother-in-law, unfortunately (as it will soon become obvious why), let ‘It’ slip. (‘It’ here refers to a f..t, no less!) For a self-respecting Kashmiri, particularly a woman, there can be no worse embarrassment than this, especially in front of the son-in-law. It is common among Kashmiris not to refer to certain ‘gross’ words directly but make these obvious indirectly or by implication. Unfortunately, for those at the wrong end of such disasters, such an approach, far from diluting the impact only helps exaggerate it many-fold thus adding to the mirth and humour! In desperation to hide her blushes, the mother-in-law tried to mask the unfortunate sound by overwhelming it with another sound - that produced by striking of metal plates. However, the attempt failed miserably; nature was far too quick and loud, and stole the thunder hands down! Upon recognising the futility of the mother-in-law’s attempt at masking the reality and not wanting to let go of the God-sent opportunity to raise a chuckle or two that came his way, the son-in-law waxed lyrical in front of the mother-in-law thereby adding to her discomfiture.

Subsequently, upon his return home, he narrates the episode, but obviously not in as many words, to his wife. Her reaction and the essence of the entire parody (duly exaggerated for maximum hilarity) intertwined with the embarrassment of the mother-in-law and the mirth of the son-in-law, is caught in the following:

Zaamatur guv hohvur; Hashi seit rutchar-patth karith guv ta beutth apaari kothi; yapaari chokass tchai hush tamiss keutt khaas batta-seun ranani. Kodratitch karistani wuchhtav zi hushi guv ‘athashar’ ta dittun bod ‘Naad’! Sharmi kin heutt hushi karun thaalas tthiv ta tthas yuth zan na zaamteriss aslitch khabar gachhi. Magar zaamteris tor dasti fikari, cheunun davani sorui, ta vonanas:

Maalvenchi Batanee,
Thaalas mai kar tthiv ta tthass;
Thala tthivas sadaa akh chhui,
Ta Tratta Gaggarayan hund ‘Naad’ byon chhui !

Sadahass ta Naadass milvatth,
Gatchhaan nai tthivav ta tthassav sait;
‘Apazui sadaa’ ta ‘aslook Naad’,
Milvith nai banaan kunui raad !

Beyi, daali ti noon seonui chhui,
Tammich ti haanchh byonui chhai;
Grakan ta Trattan kusui mail ?
Humeuk ta yameuk hai byonui khel !

Aakharass guv zaamtur garra ta tatti woth zanaani kun:

Mubaarakh hai chhui,
Tche chhai shaadi,
Tche hai zaayee benihen!

Hai logussa myon zuv ta jaan,
Naav kyahsa korahass?

Naav hai korhoss Choonker!

Kentchav dohav patta watchch zanaana roeniss kun:

Ba gatchahaen Choonker wuchhini;
Sona panzeb animuss garith,
Tchharai ma gachha.

Raen soonch - painsuk chhu maamla, yi gayi zyadai neerith, to dopnuss:

Maifee dizem,
Mya hyakyomai na wanith;
Magar soa hai badeyi tamee saata;
Yamee Tthasa aayi ta tamee Tthasa gayi!

Wadaan wadaan waitch koor maaji nish ta bovun panun hall:

Godakaer garemai Choonkariye,
Paanzeb aneymai Choonkariye;
Yim kamisui dima waen Choonkariye;
Buth ti nai wuchhimai Choonkariye!

Maji zoan yekhdum zi daleel kyah chhi, soa wachch kori kun:

Ba lagai balaayi, oash mai haar;
Kyah vanai koori, poazuye boazakh,
Aki azaaba nish meulum najaath!
Magar krith kadnuss ti roodum na war;
Dam phaett chhas gamitch;
Kas vana panun zaar!

Akh akiss taslee karaan:

Tche kyazi goi koori yithai heuh?
Tamahui roodum, meti hai wuchhumas na buth!
Yamee dama aayi ta tamee dama draayi;
Praarnuss ti ruzus na fursathai!

Yi samsaar hai aakher baazigaar,
Kuni petth ti nai patsch, maeji, tee kari vyachaar.

Koer, aasai Tassenj marzi ta beyi soazess,
Ta raeti saatha bulaavokh saeri saalas;
Yuth zan-na kansi rozi pattavatta graav!

Akhtui annokh, maeji, gindanger ti,
Yim natchan doal ta baji wayaan!

Hai lagai balaayi, wuchh ta kyah guv jaan;
Yemi latti ti hargah aasahan unimet,
Teli hai gatchihem na yi gath!

Krishan Kaul originally hails from Rainawari, Srinagar, Kashmir. After obtaining his Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering in India, he moved to the United Kingdom where he obtained his Masters degree with distinction securing the top mark.

Krishan Kaul retired as Technical Director and a Specialist Expert within the Hyder Group, a multi-disciplinary firm of consulting engineers in the UK. During his 40-year professional career in the design and construction of major civil engineering structures, including a number of years on site, he acquired a wealth of experience and built up a pool of expertise in the Civil/Structural/Geotechnical engineering fields.
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