Monday, May 11, 2009

Ghonchu speaks Kannada

Ghonchu was standing in the queue for tea-board. He was feeling sleepy and wanted to drink a cup of tea. While he was waiting, a couple of girls joined the queue behind him. After overhearing their conversation, Ghonchu figured out that they were talking in Kannada. He decided to try and impress them with his Kannada knowledge.

Ghonchu quickly revised all the Kannada that he knew. He knew the word 'madi' from a sign-board he had seen once - 'scratch madi jeeto gaadi'. He also knew the sentence 'Kannada gothila'. However, he suddenly remembered proudly that he had learnt counting in Kannada from one to nine - ondhu, yeradu, mooru, naalaku, aidhu, aaru, yelu, yentu, umbatu. He decided to show off his Kannada knowledge by asking for yentu (eight) tea-coupons.

When his turn came at the counter, he asked for yentu tea-coupons. The shop-keeper was counting the money given by the previous customer absent-mindedly said 'yeshtu'. Ghonchu stood perplexed. He thought his kannada was flawed and maybe eight was called 'yeshtu' and not 'yentu'. He replied 'yeshtu'. The shop-keeper looked up and again said - 'yeshtu ?'

, Ghonchu nodded promptly now convinced that he had come to the correct conclusion and mentally praised himself for doing so.

'Yeshtu ?', asked the shop-keeper again , now exasperated.

'Yeshtu', replied Ghonchu, also getting impatient and exasperated.

The shop-keeper now held his head in his hands. 'Yeshtu ?', he asked again now looking like a drowning man who clutched at a straw and found that it was broken.

Behind Ghonchu, one of the girls interrupted and asked Ghonchu, 'how many?'

Ghonchu turned and seeking sympathy, he said, ' eight, but this fellow doesn't understand !! '

The girl moved over to the counter and smoothly said, ' Yentu tea-coupons. ' Then she told Ghonchu, "Yeshtu means how many .'

Ghonchu was left clutching his yentu tea coupons open-mouthed with a similar expression to a person who had put more sugar in his coffee thinking there wasn't any, and later on found that all the sugar was at the bottom.