Till the last drop

Interestingly, the non-wastage obsession is found in tiny tots too.

We Indians are unique folks by ourselves. We may fritter away the most precious commodity called ‘time’, by indulging in unproductive, asinine chatters.

We may even squander away surfeit money, by setting off on self-gratifying, shopping sorties. But, we display utter parsimony, when it comes to the way we make use of certain things, till the last traces of it.

For instance, just watch us while we are pouring the milk from milk sachet into a vessel, before heating it on the gas-burner. Many of us try sluicing the inside area of milk sachet, with certain amount of water, which later gets added to the boiling milk.

This is to ensure few milk droplets sticking inside sachets don’t get wasted. And then we seldom chuck off that last bit of body/washing soap. Instead, while the small soap-piece is in its sodden state, we try pressing it onto the fresh soap bar, such that when dried, both the small and big pieces stick to each other, like long lost sisters.

And, how many of us junk the toothpaste tube, when there’s still some itsy-bitsy quantity of paste remaining in the tube? We use all our brains and brawns in crimping the tube from tail-end to its opening, till whatever contained inside just juts out.

On doing this, we feel inordinately triumphant, patting ourselves on our backs, for our supposedly stupendous feat, and of course for not ‘wasting things’. Yes, we also don’t trash the bottles, containing last drops of liquid hand-wash or hair shampoo.

We prise open the non-movable bottle-lids, pour water, make it swivel couple of times, before using it on our hands or hair respectively. Just as in nippy cold months, we make the coconut-oil container, swirl n’ twirl on wide-rimmed vessel, containing tepid water, till the last thin layer of solidified coconut-oil melts into few drops, which later on, with all glee, is applied on the hair. 

Interestingly, this non-wastage obsession is found in tiny tots too. For, you see these small kiddies making strange sounds, while sipping from sleek straws sups of soft drinks, as they guzzle down the drink, without wasting a single drop.

Also, after polishing off a cup of ice-cream, you see them furtively licking off that thin layer of ice-cream, sticking on their ice-cream cup. Well, all these explain for the rotund anatomy of most of our Indian women. At nights, after the family’s dinner, you find these women stoking themselves up with all leftover food, just to avoid the food ‘going waste’.

Here I’m reminded of a friend, who in a bid not to ‘waste things’, in some gravy, had once used off some fresh coconut, which was smelling tad rancid. Just within an hour the dish had putrefied, and she had to bin off the whole stuff. Indeed, can anyone refute the veracity in the phrase “spoiling the ship for half-penny-worth of tar”!      

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