Scene I.

Alamelu: Hey there, hey! Yes, you. (Jii.) How many times do I have to yell from the kitchen (and) can't you just listen to me? Yes, you.

Adiyabadam: MMmmmmm.

A. What's this, mmmm?

Adiyabadam: Who? Did you call me?

A. Well, who else?

Adiyabadam: oh, what's this you come with the ladle in the hand? I was totally wrapped up in the newspaper. I was trying to finish up before the last minute before I have to give the paper back to Paramacivam next door, or he'll be sending his son over for it.

A. Uh-hunh.

Adiyabadam: That's why I was reading it with such urgency.

Al. Okay, that's fine, won't the people who paid for the paper give a sign when they want it back instead of remaining silent?

Adiyabadam: Well, I also been in the position of having bought the paper, and then had others come and I let them read it free-gratis, for nothing. Now the family's grown larger, I find myself in the position of reading other people's papers without paying; what can we do?

A. Yes, you. Look and see if there are any interesting wedding advertisements in the paper.

. Oh, hunh, hmm, there's some; look here.

A. Where? What is there?

. Look on this page. There's even one with a foto, don't you see? "Holy Matrimony. Kottayur Kottai Paak Merchant Kubeerasami's (son) Kumaran Kumaracami to..."

A. Hmmm.,

. Veettaiyur betal leaf Merchant Vengatasami's daughter Veeni (will) get married..."

A. Hey, I didn't ask for any of that. I ask whehter there are any ads saying "I need a daughter-in-law", and you go and read something else.

. Okay, you have to have some patience. A girl who's rushing head over heels into marriage needs to wait a while, aren't you concerned?

Even if there is concern, what use is it Alamelu? Shouldn't there an approprite time for that? Hey. I have also made so many attempts, and nothing works out. Yes, yes, we have to just postpone...


You came calling from the kitchen, so what's new?

A. Look here. Look at the clock, do you see what time it is?

It's 8:30 a.m.

A. If I had been able to buy even one vegetable I could finish cooking. In another hour you'll fly off the handle if I don't put dinner out. It'll be time to go to the office, and then you'll get angry.

Adiyabadam: Alamelu! Take whatever there is and finish cooking.

A.. What do you mean? There's not a vegetable in the house. Goo, just go, move along, I say.

ADI: There's no point in going.

A. hah?

Adi: But, (don't you realize) our money purse's balance is zero. What's the date today, hm? Thirtieth, did you forget?

A. Well, whatever; buy some kinds of greens or other.

ADI: Hah! Look here, come here and look, did you see, in the purse? I saw, count it up. How much is there? Exactly 46 cents.

A. 46? 46 cents?

Adi: 46 cents? For today, for the bus in the morning, 18 cents.

A. okay.

Adi: In the evening, I'll walk home.

A. OAdi:

Adi: Okay, that much, tomorrow morning 18 cents; then for a revenue stamp 10 cents. Hah! okay, the sum of all that... Ohhhh! 46 cents. Hmm. If there's the slightest hitch in all this, I won't be able to manage!

A. ARe you finished talking? Finished? Yes, how what are you going to tell (me) to do with all this?

Adi: Okay don't (go on and on); just take some fenugreek sauce...

A. What kind of sauce?

Adi: Fry an appalam.

A. Fenugreek sauce?

Adi: Fry the Appalam nie and crisp, with the fenugreek sauce.

A. I'm spposed to fry the appalam nice and crisp, am I? Hmm. You say to fry it nice and crisp, but when and where is this appalam supposed to come from?

hy. Ohmigosh, fry it in oil, don't you know? the appalam? I forgot about that. That's a problem, isn't it. Okay, do one thing.

A. What?

Adi: Soak some lentils...

A. Hah!

Adi: Take it, it'll be great. Fry the appalam.

P. (Outside voice) Sir! Sir!

Adi: Fry the appalam.

P. Adiyabadam, Mr. Adiyabadam!

Adi: (whispering) Who's that? Who's voice of doom is that?

A. What? Look, it's the neighbor, Viracami's coming. You go, ask what he wants and report back.

Adi: (whispering:) Has he come, this guy? (Aloud) Hello, sir, come in! Come in (laughing). (to himself) here i come.

Hello sir, welcome. What brings you to this neighborhod at this hour of the morning?

P. This is the only time I *can* come to find you home. Last month's rent hasn't been paid yet, and today is the 30th of the money.

A. I'll give the two months rent together tomorrow, you don't need to worry.

P. That's why i thought I'd come and tell you right now. and oh Yes, when do you come home from the office tomorrow evening?

A. 5:30, thereabouts. Why do you ask?

P. In that case, I'll be here at 5:00.

A. No, sir, I'll bring it and pay it myself.

P. No need for that, no need. That would be a waste of time for you? I'll come and get itmyself. (leaves)

A. Hmmm. Sneaky guy, shows up a day early. Seems to have wanted to give us advance warning.

4. Sir, sir! Is there anybody home? Is the master at home?

A. It's the milk-lady, come to collect the milk bill.

Adi. Tsk tsk tsk. As soon as the 30th rolls around, there's no rest in thishouse. Sh()!. Hello? what is it?

P. I just dropped by...

Adi. Come in, come in.

P. Tomorrows the first of the month, so I thought I'd just come and see..

Adi. So you came today instead!

P. Yes...

Adi. Thinking that tomorrow's the first... Hmmm.

P. You have so many expenses, you might forget it with all that...

Adi. Eh! How could I forget you? Where would we go, having forgotten...

p. There's expenses up the kazoo this month, ma'am. hmm.

I have to buy fodder for the cows, mmhm. At home there are various expenses, mm. If you could put a little (more) money in with this month's money, I'll deduct it from next month, just deduct it from the milk account...

Adi. Why yes, of course! What's with you? Huh? Advance payments? Deduct it this way, if I give an advance. You're really somthing! If I let you keep the change on what I owe you this month, it's enough, I should think. But no, not you!

P. ah, okay, ma'am. you don't need to be sad(?) What's happened has made me very tired(?) Please give me a cup of coffee.

A. Yeah, right! The coffee tin is already empty here. (to Adi): You just be quiet. (sarcastically:) Coffee, she wants! Coffee!

P. All right, ma'am. I'll go now. Things don't seem to be so good right now. I'll come tomorrow in the evening. Have a look at the bill. Uhn! I'll want to be able to go straight home with my money.