A roadside market in Uttar Pradesh – Part VI

Posted: February 13, 2014 in A roadside market in Uttar Pradesh, Short stories, starts & writing

Yama Surya had, at the age of eighteen, followed his parent’s wishes and “come to U.K.”
Once there, he quickly began his quest of becoming a self-made man, driving through the streets of West London in a Glenalmond-green Hillman Husky, selling vacuum cleaners on commission door-to-door for Ravensdale’s Electrical Goods.
But he wasn’t just going to be some simple box wallah. He had grand plans, a good reference from Mr. Ravensdale himself and the beginnings of a deposit for, someday, his very own shop. The beginnings of an empire that would be built on machines used to suck up the dust of another, older Empire. But that was later, down the track. Plenty of people yet to walk through their homes with their dirty feet.

Being adept as he was in the art of talking at a mile a minute it wasn’t long after Shani’s arrival that Yama began to include the story of his baby daughter’s birthday and the coincidental eclipse in his sales spiel. That is, when he was allowed to give his sales spiel.
Lugging a bulbous Hoover Constellation from doorway to doorway, his smiling, cherubic face was very often met with cold derision, racist abuse and slammed doors.
But Yama’s friendly mug and impeccable dress-sense (to say nothing of the fact that he had a much paler complexion than many of his fellow South-Asian immigrants), were also met by enough enthusiastic housewives, lonely widowers and curious spinsters that he had a more than adequate audience for his well-honed and increasingly successful sales pitch.
And, of course, every good housewife worth her salt had heard of the fantastic sucking power of “the cleaner that walked on air!”


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