One spring morning, Nina Padmanabhan was joined by Senthil and Renuka Pillai in her neighbourhood. When Nina first met Mrs Pillai, the latter began her first sentence with the words ‘We are a peace-loving family… ‘ However as days went by, her true colours were revealed. Chaos was Mrs Pillai’s middle name. She had a problem for every solution.
‘The leaves of your gulmohar trees are always falling and defiling the beauty of my garden; chop the portion which crosses the fence or I shall chop off the entire tree,’ Mrs pillai complained to Nina’s domestic help.
The neighbours shared a common fence.
The very next day, Nina’s children complained of smelly rotten eggs! When Nina looked out of the window, she could witness garbage dumped in her garden from across the fence! Nina’s domestic help returned the favour by dumping waste in Mrs Pillai’s garden the next day only to find Nina’s gulmohar tree partly chopped off !
For some days peace prevailed but did not last very long.The Pillas purchased their first car and whenever Mrs Pillai had to run errands for the house or go out she would go honking the horn and disturbing everyone in the neighbourhood! So deafening was the shrill noise of the horn that Nina’s house was rid of rodents after
Mrs Pillai came in her neighbourhood. Thanks to her.
Mrs Pillai had been so fault-finding that all her domestic help refused to work with her. In a matter of four months she had changed 7 domestic help and the last one had also given up on her.
Nina’s son learnt guitar from his tutor in the afternoon However Mrs Pillai tried to put a stop to it by labelling it as ‘noise in a peace-loving neighbourhood’ and adding that it disturbed her afternoon sleep.
One summer afternoon, Mrs Pillai was watering plants in her garden when a vegetable vendor happened to pass by. She instantly picked up a fight with the vendor over the prices of vegetables. In Mrs Pillai’s habitual style, the fight went on for hours and Mrs Pillai who had forgotten to turn off the tap attached to the hoze for watering the garden had a swimming pool ready to relieve the Pillai’s of the sweltering heat brought forth by the scorching summers!!
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