The wife was saying this morning: "Conjunctivitis is in the air, you better wear dark glasses and go to office."
"Dark glasses!" I said. "I'll look a proper chump in dark glasses, people will laugh at me. Children will follow me in the street and make rude remarks."
"People do wear dark glasses and nobody laughs. The King of Nepal and his two Queens wear dark glasses all the time and I have not seen anybody laughing at them," the wife said.
"In Nepal they can do what they like, that is their own country," I said. "But we are in India and I am not going to wear any dark glasses."
"If you don't want to have conjunctivitis, you have to," the wife said. "Everybody is wearing them, the body brought the paper today hace them on. He said his doctor had told him to wear them. And our watchman was asking me if I had an old pair of your dark glasses that I could lend him, because he through he was coming down with connjunctivitis."
"This is all a fad, I tell you," I said. "Thre is no medical evidence that dark glasses prevent conjuctivitis. If you are going to get it, you get it. You don't go about looking like a South Indian star of the 1940s because of that."
The wife said: "I have found a pair of dark glasses in your cupboard and I have cleaned them. You put them on and go to office and keep them on in the office at all times. Don't know what kind of people must be working with you, eyes red with conjunctivitis."
"It is not AIDS," I said. "Conjuctivitis is a very minor ailment. All you have to do is to wash the eye with a little boric powder mixed in Dettol, and afterwards wash your face with Lifebuoy soap. You don't have to go about wearing funny glasses."
"The glasses I have found are brown, but green glasses are better protections. So, this afternoon, when I go out, I will get you a pair of green glasses, which you can wear from tomorrow. Also, I want to get you one of those mirror glasses which reflect the other person's face in them. They will not only protect you from conjuctivitis but also make you look smart."
"I don't want to look smart and I don't want other people's face reflected in my glasses," I said.
"Then you better wear these dark glasses that I have found for you and go to office," he wife said.
So I wore them. And when I reached the office, the chief looked at me and said: "Who do you think you are, H.K.L., Bhagat!"