Ubikequitous 4

The farm lay strung along a narrow and pitted farm-to-market road, built in the nineteen-seventies, when Harouni still had influence in the Islamabad bureaucracy. Buff or saline-white desert dragged out between fields of sugarcane and cotton, mango orchards and clover and wheat, soaked daily by the tube wells that Nawabdin Electrician tended. Beginning the rounds of Nurpur Harouni on his itinerant mornings, summoned to a broken pump, Nawab and his bicycle bumped along, decorative plastic flowers swaying on wires sprouting from the frame. His tools, notably a three-pound ball-peen hammer, clanked in a greasy leather bag suspended from the handlebars. The farmhands and the manager waited in the cool of the banyans, planted years earlier to shade each of the tube wells. “No tea, no tea,” Nawab insisted, waving away the steaming cup.

Daniyal Mueenuddin, Nawabdin Electrician, New Yorker August 27, 2007


omar said...

That paragraph makes my head hurt. I just can't read fiction like that anymore. It comes off as purple prose.

And who is offering him the damn tea?

Tarik Saleh said...

Yeah, yeah, the purplification of the new yorker fiction. I gamely give it a go every week, but more often than not, I don't reach the second page. This one was pretty good though, and it had a bicycle in it, see?

So I whomped him on the head.

omar said...

Yeah, I see. But give me a good whomping story any day.