A couple of days back I wrote about even Memons not printing their women's names on wedding cards. I received such a card from a distant relative, a Memon who has never done a day's work in his entire life (because his illiterate father left him a huge fortune). This man has his own views on what real Islam is. A few months back, he started his tirade against what is wrong with our society, and how to improve it by observing the true religion (namely, having long beards and wearing ankle-length trousers, among other things). Since I'm allergic to such people, I did not go to his son's wedding dinner.

The other reason, of course, is that people like him think having dinner before midnight is a heinous sin. I did not want to return home two hours after midnight, particularly during these days when people are mugged every day.

The next time I meet him and if he starts talking about religion, I'll tell him about my own wedding dinner, which was at 8 pm. My friends at the time thought I was joking and didn't believe me when I told them this. A minute before eight, my father announced that dinner was being served. My friends were amazed. They thought I had deliberately arranged an early dinner to avoid going to a shrine in Clifton (in those days, every believer was supposed to go there and beg the dead man buried there to help them become fathers in nine months). One of my friends (now deceased) even told me to pray and ask the saint (Abdullah Shah) to forgive me for this transgression. As it turned out, his own wife sued him for divorce after the birth of their first child (a girl). I should have asked him why the saint didn't help him, but of course I didn't have the heart to do it (due to my upbringing in a missionary school).