Rustomjee Pestonjee (RP) had been staying in The Wilson Garden Old Age Home for the past 15 yrs now.
Ever since he had that fall in the bathroom around 16 odd yrs ago and bumped his head, his hearing had been affected. For the first few days, the doctors thought that his hearing will be back to normal, but as time went by, they prescribed earphones connected to a hearing device which could be kept in RP’s shirt pocket. Despite the earphones, his hearing did not improve all that much and people still had to repeat their words, and loudly most of the time to enable him to hear them and respond. While his wife and children dealt with it gracefully initially, they finally ended up in putting him in the old age home. After all they were also human and their patience also had its limits.
Life at the home was not that bad and RP did not have any hard feelings against his wife and kids. He understood the problems caused due to his inability to hear well. In fact he enjoyed life at the home that much more after he made two new friends there – Madhav Menon (MM) and James Hunt (Jim).
In fact the three of them had so much fun at the home that the rest of the inmates dubbed them the “unholy trinity”, given their penchant for breaking almost all the rules of the home and doing things which completely went against the grain of what others their age were doing. From late night jaunts at the nearby dhaba and bar, to playing crazy pranks on the other inmates, the fun quotient and enthusiasm of the unholy trinity was so much that it contributed a lot to the entire home being a fun place to be in.
On Independence Day, RP decided to enjoy the lovely monsoon weather of Bangalore and took the small walk down the road to the Lalbagh Gardens very close to their home. Once in the garden, RP got a little worked up and started pacing up and down the walking track unmindful of the gentle drizzle. Given the fact that RP hardly had any hair left on his scalp and the fact that he had forgotten to carry his umbrella, he was almost completely drenched by the time he finished his walk and got back to the home. Quite naturally, one thing led to another and by lunch time on that day, he had the sniffles and by tea time on the same day, he had a severe throat infection as well. As if his lack of hearing was not bad enough, he now could not talk as well. His entire life was like a silent movie now.
Now, MM and Jim were the best of friends with RP and sympathized with his situation, but they were also mischievous enough to realize that this was a golden opportunity to play some memorable pranks on RP, given his situation.
When they bought RP his medicines they added an additional special cough syrup bottle to the mix. Post dinner, when it was time for RP to have his medicines, they ensured that they kept a safe distance from RP.
When he lifted the cough syrup bottle RP’s initial reaction was that the bottle seemed empty, but then, he was too tired and dazed from his sniffles and throat infection that he didn’t pay too much attention to it. This bottle was nothing like any medicine bottle that RP had ever seen. It was dark, small and was sealed with a rubber cork. When he opened the cork, he immediately smelt something sweet and in the next 30 odd seconds, he started laughing uncontrollably. Despite the fact that he was in reasonable discomfort due to his throat infection, he simply couldn’t control his laughter.
Earlier MM and Jim had gone to a chemist that they used to frequent and had asked him for a favor. They asked him to bottle up his most potent Nitrous Oxide (laughing gas) and seal it with a rubber cork. They then bought a small cough syrup bottle and carefully peeled the label and stuck it on the bottle with the laughing gas.
Funnily enough after around one continuous hour of laughing uncontrollably, RP had managed to spit out enough phlegm that was accumulated in his throat and as a result his throat infection seemed to have cleared up. And the fact that his laughter was accompanied by tears as well meant that most of his sniffles had also vanished. Therefore, despite the fact that MM and Jim had played quite a nasty prank on him, they had also unwittingly helped RP get rid of his cold and sore throat.
After all, that’s what friends were for, right…
This post has been selected as one of Blogadda’s WoW Picks of the week on 26-August-2013.