You are welcome

I was at the grocery store checkout line yesterday.  Mood was too grumpy because the lady in front of me had a cart full of groceries.  Why on earth anybody would buy a cart full of groceries on a Tuesday morning? Just then I heard a sound behind and  turned back.  One look at the person behind and my eyes stopped blinking, my ears stopped hearing, my jaw dropped, my heart started pounding, my emotions were gushing.  The  (non-Indian) man behind me totally looked like..........Arvind Swamy..................you know I'm kidding right?
The man with a round face, black square glasses, bald forehead with little white hair on the back of his head, totally looked like my grandfather. As I said earlier, my emotions were surging.  That respected person was having only a bag of apples.  

With that "grandfather"thingy still going on, I told him,

          "You can go next."

He was so happy( maybe he would've thought why on Earth on a Tuesday morning this lady is buying a cart full of groceries).  He asked me,

        "You speak Hindi, right?"

( there mere beech mien kaisa hai yeh bhandhan anjaana. ) 

I said, "Yes."

And he said, "Shukhriya."

I smiled at him.  By now the (cart full) lady finished her billing and moved.  The respected man passed me on my right, gave the bag of apples to the cashier, looked at me  and he said , "Shukhriya," .....again.

I was taken aback.  I gaped at him and he stared at me back.  In a flash I remembered that I didn't say "You are welcome".  I struggled to find the hindi equivalent for "You are welcome." I was not able to find any, so I said , "You are welcome."  

"Not in Hindi??" he smiled, nodded his head, waved a goodbye and went.

I let a sigh(there goes my Grandpa) and started loading my things on the counter , when the Indian cashier asked, "You speak Hindi,right?"

What???  I'm not playing this game anymore. Suddenly something flashed through my mind.  Why don't I try "Shukhriya" to this person, so I will get back "You are welcome" in Hindi.  

I said, "Yes," and he started talking in Hindi.

As he was talking, I was busy practicing my "Shukhriya".

"suniye, Shukhriya," - Awful.

"dekho ji, Shukhriya ji," - Useless.

"Shukhriya Saab"  -  Saab is too much."

"bahooth Shukhriya ji" -  Too big.

Finally I  decieded to stick with "Shukhriya ji."

I signed the bill(wow!!What a phrase), he handed me the receipt, I put the receipt in my bag.  Then I looked at him.  With a big grin  I said , "Shukhriya Ji".

With a bigger grin   he said, "You are welcome."

Really????




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