(The Outsider’s Guide to Dillistan) Xenophobia

Like every nation, Dillistan does not like foreigners.

Some sociologists and historians will try and convince you that this is because centuries of invasions have instilled an instinctive wariness and mistrust amongst the native populace.  Plausible.  But bollocks.

The real reason Dillistanis are so xenophobic is because they have to live in Dillistan, and thus resent anybody who doesn’t.

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A Dillistani has a keenly-tuned radar for detecting foreigners.

The timidity with which somebody requests a service provider to, y’know, provide the service instead of talking on his phone for 44 minutes; the naive way in which commuters expect autowallahs to start the meter; and of course, the use of the word ‘Boss’ instead of ‘bhaayyya’ – all of these instantly help the Dillistani identify the outsiders.  And it is then incumbent upon a true Dillistani to torment these border-crossers and make their stay truly unforgettable.

A Dillistani will buttonhole outsiders with insistent demands about their exact sub-sub-sub-category of religion, caste, and clan.  You can try and tell them that eight generations of your family have lived in one of the major metros, but they will not rest till you trace your roots back to some village.  At which point they will sneer at you for having such dehati roots, unlike their own.

Dillistanis will deliberately confuse you by using different names for food items.  Thus pumpkins will become ‘sitaphal’, even though all over India that’s the name for custard apples.  Dillistanis have a highly sophisticated and complex scoring system to see how quickly they can make a person frustrated, and they’re all in on the action.  The betting scene is bigger than a World Cup final,but of course you won’t even know it exists.

Dillistanis will also mock anybody who can afford to but doesn’t buy a bike or car because they’re concerned about sustainability and public transport.  The same applies to people who prefer not to have domestic help all day long but instead call them in for just a couple of hours every alternate day, or worse, wash their own dishes.  As for actually transporting and setting up your own furniture … well, you’d better have a will made up.

And of course, the ultimate way Dillistanis get their own back at foreigners is by ensuring that every eatery offers only potatoes and paneer in the non-meat section.

2 thoughts on “(The Outsider’s Guide to Dillistan) Xenophobia

  1. Dillistan sounds very intimidating for outsiders and I always, always, appreciate the candor of your rants. Just one more to go! Have you heard about the Reflections Post that you can choose to write on May 5th? Here is the link for more info:www.a-to-zchallenge.com/2014/04/up-up-and-away-atozchallenge.html I hope you will participate. I intend to-it will be a nice way to summarize our experiences.

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