In this cobweb, we have been ensnared for centuries. You don’t even need to walk into it. You simply have to take birth as part of one of the many family trees and you are trapped already. Those are the sentiments of today’s youth. They are not to be blamed because they are constantly forced to drink the venom spewed by the many uncles, aunties, their lads and lasses; some stay close, some seven seas apart. But they are always observing your every move.
It’s not all that bad, really. Once you learn to squeeze some benefits from them, you have the last laugh. Here are some such utilities.
· Wide network: The network of relatives is so widespread and prompt that you win consolation prize in a competition and the entire clan showers you with congratulations.
· Showering sweets: If you have a sweet tooth, you will love it when relatives make a visit. Almost always (barring the real misers), they bring with them a whole box of sweets (assorted or otherwise).
· Free advices: Who needs counselors when each of our problems can be sorted out for free?
· Wisdom: With every encounter, you realize the importance of so many things like how to keep your mouth shut; how to praise even when there’s nothing apparently worth complimenting; how to pretend being a good listener; how to keep your calm in worst of situations; how to face criticisms; and mostly how to be a better judge of character.
· Marriage in a jiffy: If you are an eligible bachelor/bachelorette, the relatives will ensure that you are reminded of it constantly. Your parents will have so many options for your prospective bride/groom. Your vices, if any, will be conveniently concealed. They will make you feel that you are one in a billion.
· Touch feet get bucks: True to the customs, relatives never forget to give at least a hundred bucks when they leave. The richer and prideful ones wouldn’t mind throwing a few thousand rupees your way.
· Clothes for gifting: There’s also this unique system of circulation wherein the gifted clothes are passed on from one aunty to another and ultimately it reaches the original buyer.
· Simplified planning: Whether you are planning to buy a house, car, or start a family (or not willing to start one), your task is made easy by the involvement of your relatives. You only have to drop a hint and leave the rest to them.
Are you still complaining? You better stop running away and face them. The sooner you learn, the better it will be because the thing you run away from is the thing you run into. Besides, having relatives is so useful. So what if you are mostly left with bitter taste in your mouth? As long as you are willing to try, you can always be certain of getting rewards of one kind or the other.