In Tamil, my mother tongue, “Chinna Veedu” literally means “small house” implying a mistress kept in a smaller house by a rich man whose bigger house was for his official wife and family. A movie was also made with the same title some years ago which was a bit hit in Tamil Nadu.
I was teasing a friend of mine about his current work style of working only four days a week due to the restrictions due to Covid by asking him if he had established a “Chinna Veedu”. After fielding that effectively, he told me of a story about a mutual friend that I had not known so far.
This mutual friend was a wealthy wholesaler in Mumbai with two children, one a son and the other, younger, a daughter. The son joined his father’s business after his college education and the daughter, after acquiring an MBA, started to work for a very big business man in Mumbai in his office in the Finance department.
As, it is normal in such families, the parents indulged her as it was only for a short while as she was expected to get married into another business family as is the custom in their community. When she was 24, the parents found a very nice match for her and got her married in a typically lavish Indian wedding ceremony.
Just after a few months, the daughter returned to her parent’s home complaining that her husband was impotent and that she wanted a divorce. Her parents, devastated confronted the groom’s family and the truth finally came out.
There was nothing wrong with the groom but, the daughter was in an affair with her boss who had asked her to get married to please the parents but to get a divorce after a while on the promise that he too would get a divorce from his current wife and marry her. The girl is 24 and the boss 50 years old.
Finally, all issues were sorted out and both parties went through the divorces and before they could get married however, our mutual friend had a massive heart attack and died just a few months ago at the age of 60.
I did not know about this story as I have been out of touch with most of my former business associates that I knew during my working days and this news and story came as a total surprise and shock to me as I knew the girl and her family rather well and had a very amicable relationship with them over many years.
What as story to start my Sunday off with! Have you come across anything like this in your circles?
10 thoughts on “One Thing Leads To Another.”
Do you remember my novel that you read a few years ago. Which still remains unpublished? There was a minor character in the story, a neighbour, who told the heroine of the novel, an Irish woman visiting India, her story. This minor character had been married in a typical, lavish Indian wedding. She had two children quickly. But neither she nor her spouse were happy. In the end, the husband confessed that he was in a long affair but was unable to marry the person owing to the fact that she was the wrong caste and his parents were not agreeable. However, now that there were two children and he had tried his level best and found himself quite unhappy in this marriage with the ‘wrong’ wife. So he offered his unwanted wife a divorce. He wanted her to leave the children and start afresh and she agreed. He promised to take good care of the children and said that his second wife would accept them. This second wife would be the person he’d originally wanted to marry. He planned to move away to some other country where no-one would know that his second wife was not the mother of the children. The Irish protagonist in the story found it astonishing that the Indian woman could leave her kids. She had been abandoned by the Indian father of her own child but had raised the child alone with her parents’ help. I know I wrote that story but it seems like someone else wrote it now. These kinds of ‘make and break’ marriages don’t sound very healthy to me. That young one will get her comeuppance, marrying an oul’ lad. When she’s 50 and still full of joie de vivre, that eejit will be 76 and not able to cut the mustard so to speak. Then she’ll know the meaning of impotent. Serves her right. An age difference of about 15 years, either way, is the limit in my humble opinion. Generational differences between a couple are generally not advisable. They are not at all practical.
I am sure that all of us have real life stories of similar nature from our own circles. It is just that for me, it came as a shock because of the personalities involved.
Luckily no, I haven’t come across anything like that. My friends have always been very well-behaved! A fatal heart attack at 60 is most unusual nowadays – maybe caused by the rather stressful situation he was in?
His whole family, my friend and I are convinced that the heart attack was due to the high stress that he went through.
ummnm the only stories I have of unusual marriages – are two different people who don’t live full time with their respective partners. One is a woman, who often goes away on her own to house-sit someone else’s place, a bit of time out & then comes back and they are a couple. The other woman lives entirely in another house from her husband although they do many outings together.
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Both the stories are very unusual indeed.
I was thinking that ‘arranged’ marriages were a thing of the past for some reason. are they still fairly common Rummy? especially in wealthier families perhaps?
I wouldn’t like that. although once I read that they were mainly successful. it just seems so confining of one’s own spirit and freedom!
Oh, yes they are Tammy. In fact, more common than the so called arranged marriages. There is a joke that does the rounds of social media every now and then that goes like this. One Westerner asks an Indian “How can you marry some one who you have not known before?” The Indian counters with, “How can you marry someone that you have known before?”
I have known a few that I have written about. One staggering one (to me) was the moves put on me by a bridegroom on his wedding day. Both bride and groom were very good friends of former husband and I.
I have known many office affairs and one marriage taking place while the affair carried on. No two. I remember a guy who did the same thing.
Wow! That is a scene that I would have loved to witness. Office affairs here too are quite common now a days though, during my working years, not as many.
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