My parents belong to a land-lord family of Sukkur. They own bungalows in Hyderabad and Karachi. For the sake of education, I and my younger brother are residing in Karachi. We are often visited by our relatives and friends. I take pleasure in playing host.
We are Jokheyoos and our relatives are educated, people. Some of them hold good posts. Our old cook and servant Juma lives with us. They live in servants quarter. Sometimes they are also visited by their relatives and friends who are rustics (villagers). Once Juma’s under a farmer visited him. He stayed for a month in Karachi.
Our hospitality is open for all. Whoso every comes from our lands, shares lodging and boarding with us. In these days of urbanization and mobility, most of the people are habitual of visiting the cities. But it was chacha Omar’s first visit to Karachi. He used to wear his typical clothes and shoes.
The next day after his arrival, he went out for buying cigarettes from a nearby panshop. He was like a pond frog and had never left the land. He lost the way. I had to send out the cook and Juma to reach him. He was found near the main road observing flow of traffic. They brought him home after half an hour. In the evening he sat on the floor and observed T.V. He was all surprise and spellbound to see the magic of sight and sound. He called T.V. a dabba (chest). He enjoyed wrestling and folk songs.
Next day we went to Tariq road for shopping. We got down the car and waited to cross the road. He behaved like a wild animal to be tamed. The horns of cars and mini-buses scared him. His eyes dazzled on seeing the lights and neon signs. I bought a new dress for him. He often ran helter shelter while walking on the road. Sometimes he was lost in watching tall buildings.
The never-ending traffic, the lines of cars in different colours and shapes, the hustle and bustle in the bazars, citizens in fashionable and gaudy garments, the chain of entertainments, all attracted and surprised him. He was a rustic and a simpleton. His first and I think the last visit to the city was a new experience for him. Life in Karachi is full of hurry and worries. He could hardly believe in what he had seen and experienced.
Chacha was glad but he liked not the life of the city. He often requested me not to change places. I think he had in his mind the famous lines of Poet Cowper
“God made the country
And man made the town”.