Chaitanya and Vaishali are good friends of mine.  I have known them for quite some time now and have always called them by their full names.

Both had come to visit us for Diwali and while chatting about various things, Chaitanya’s nickname came up as being Chaai.  Chaai in India is of course the well brewed favourite beverage Tea.  I was quite amused and we cracked a few jokes about the nickname before they took their leave.  I bid them farewell but this time addressed the former as Chai much to his and his wife’s amusement.

It was after they had left that it occurred to me that Vaishali too could get a similar nickname – Vaai.  That sounds like Wai which is actually a historically important temple town about 120 Kms from Pune.

I can’t wait for them to return to Pune from their Diwali vacation to throw this one at them to see their reaction.

16 thoughts on “Nicknames.”

    1. SAW, this is a phenomenon that is quite common here too, particularly among the Bengalis. Even if there are no nicknames, when our mother used to try and call one of us, she would start with one of the other’s names and finally end up with the one she wanted. For instance, if she wanted to hail me, she would say ” Ara, Bara, Ramana!” Arvind and Barath being my younger brothers!

  1. It’s surprising really that virtually everyone has a nickname – or several. We feel this strange need to supplement the given name. Though I’m one of the exceptions who’s never had a proper nickname, just the abbreviated Nicky or Nick in place of my given name Nicholas.
    nick recently posted..Tit for tat

    1. The most common one is Raman pronounced rumun with the last n pronounced with a nasal effect. Rummoo, Raamu, and Raj have been used quite extensively too. My current best friend and partner in crime Ramesh, calls me Swamiji as does another mutual friend because I explain religious and spiritual doubts to them. My doctor friend calls me Vajpayee Saheb because I once made the mistake of going to his clinic dressed like out then Prime Minister Mr. A B Vajpayee. There are some friends who call me Netaji translated as Leader. Dhaadiwala for one with a beard and chadiwala for one with a walking stick are also used. The latest is my grandnephew calling me Daadoo for paternal grand father. Other children call me Thaathha for the same reason as does one very smart young lady who calls me Gramps but writes GP! Manjiree calls me Appaa. Enough?

  2. Off topic, Wai is actually more popular to some of us, as the gateway to panchgani /mahabaleshwar

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