The Wallet

6

17/10/2010 by Siddiqui Fayesal

NIKEE.

Thats what my eye hits first. I look at it and then look some more. Nope. No changes. Certified fake. How did I get into this? What the… Anyway.

I say, “Thanks Dad. I love it in Black. Looks better than even yours. No I aint parting with it.” And I gave my typical laughter which goes something like this.

HYAK HYAK HYAK HYAK.

My dad must’ve been really happy. I mean its very rare that both of us like the same thing at the same time with the same intensity. His point of view is pretty much different than mine. But then, its obvious. He’s older too, remember. When I like something its because it looks sober, not too flashy, understated…practicality is important too but not very high on the list of the 4 horsemen.

My father has only one idea about liking a think. If it does what its supposed to do then its good. No questions asked. Period.

It was just a little more than a week back that my myopic eyes fell on my fathers wallet and I realised that it needs to be changed. Its was a ghastly brownish colour with the very clear “NIKEE” etched into it. Not visible to the naked eye from afar. But I saw it and that meant anyone could.

I always wondered why did my father buy these cheap imitation when he could well afford the better ones. Mind you, I said better. Not best. I said the samething to my father.

“Dad, why did you buy this ugly wallet. Why not go for something better.”

“Why? What’s wrong with this one?”

“Nothing is wrong. But this NIKEE thing is embarrassing as hell. How much did you pay for it.”

“Stop giving me nonsense Fayesal. It’s a wallet to keep my money into. See, the funny part is that it holds my cash just like a Gucci would. Now, that is weird, eh?”

“No dad it’s not weird. But why not spend a little bit more and buy a better one.”

“Will it turn my fiver into tenner, Son? I suppose not. I’m pretty happy with this one.”

“Dad its ok to spend more than 50 bucks on a wallet. Trust me even for as little as 200 you can get a really good one. Without a spelling mistake atleast.”

“Ho Ho.”

“What?”

“I paid only 20.”

“Shit!!!”

So that was it. He gives me a smile that says something like “Oh-god-why-is-my-son-such-an-idiot” and walks off.

So I had to try another tact. After a few days I again went back to him with my own old wallet and showed it to him. It was still new as I hadn’t used it much. Just kept in a shadowy corner of my desk. Ignored. Until now.

“Dad. Look at this stupid thing. I don’t like it anymore. Its become all stiff and everything. Do you have another one that I can use. Or yours. Its so expensive and yet its not worth it.”

“Are you mad. You want to throw a perfectly good wallet. Give it to me, gadha.”

I had done my job. I knew my father will fall for it. He liked his NIKEE but the fear of me throwing away an almost new wallet made him exchange it with mine. Mine was worth a solid 350. Ok not exactly a branded expensive one but it was a pretty decent wallet. Black with a matt finish. Like I said I hated shiny stuff.

I threw into my desk and kept it inside for a week or so. I obviously had no intentions of using NIKEE. I was glad I was one up on my father.

A few days later my eye fell on & I was laughing at it when my dad walked in and handed my a black wallet. I thought it was the one I had given it to him but a closer look expelled my fear…

And distress arrived with a lot of pomp & splendor…along with a very straight faced father.

“I know you don’t like brown so I got a black one for you.”

NIKEE.

That’s what my eye hits first. I look at it and then look some more. Nope. No changes. Certified fake. How did I get into this? What the… Anyway.

I say, “Thanks Dad. I love it in Black. Looks better than even yours. No I aint parting with it.” And I gave my typical laughter which goes something like this.

HYAK HYAK HYAK HYAK.

Hearing this he walked away.

And I sat with this wallet in my hand and started wondering what was wrong with it. True, it did have a spelling mistake. True, it was cheap. People would look at it and know it. And suddenly I didn’t care.

My father actually travels by train very rarely. I was wondering how the hell does he remember things like this. He knew if he gets a black for me the brown will be wasted. I know it was worth only 20 but throwing it away was a sin. Atleast the way my dad saw it. He still got another one.

‘Cuz I told him I wanted his wallet and he misunderstood it to mean that I wanted to use it (and not chuck it). Suddenly I wasn’t a young man anymore. I was a boy of 4 or 5 who just got something that he had been crying for.

A tiny tear slipped out. I wondered why. It was just not a wallet anymore. It was something I would cherish throughout my life. It was a 20 buck wallet which might not hold money for my all my life but will always be right up there in my heart.

I still sit and think sometimes if I can ever be even something close to him as a person, as a father. I wonder whether I could ever be a father to my children like my father was to me. Would I ever be able to look upon a cheap imitation with so much irritation as i had, again. I don’t think so.

Siddiqui F.
(17.10.2010)

6 thoughts on “The Wallet

  1. amarllyis says:

    DO I LOVE IT OR DO I LOVE IT!!! 😀 Your father comes across as such an honest person. Aww… 🙂 That was so sweet and one of the best lessons that I’ve seen delivered in the most subtle fashion!

  2. Aditya says:

    A good read…:-)

  3. Anish Vyavahare says:

    Spell check please! And super nice one 😀

    • Yeah. I saw many myself. I was very careless. Thanks for pointing out though! You should see the weird mistakes I’ve made in earlier posts.

      I’m glad you liked 😀

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