Indian Woman In Orbit
JANUARY I, 2000 AD. Good evening, viewers. In the national programme tonight, we bring you a video recording of the press conference with Rati Surati, our first Indian woman cosmonaut. As you know, the American spacecraft, Noyuz”, and the space laboratory, “Namaste”, docked in the 19th orbit yesterday. Rati is in fine fettle, and we now take you over to the press conference.
Beep . . . beep . . ; Transmission bad. Please do not adjust your television sets.
“Woman’s Own”: How does India look from where you are, madam?
Rati: So sweet. Just like home sweet home.
“The Career Woman”: Madam, do you recommend space travel to women seeking an exciting career?
Rati: Of course, provided they don't mind being confined to the four walls of a spacecraft. I mean, from here you can’t step out to seek your identity.
“Trim Figure”: Madam, what exercises are you teaching your American fellow, sorry, women cosmonauts?
Rati: I have brought a cassette of the Rekha workout, and everyday we do it for a few hours.
“Woman Scientist”: Madam, what experiments are you conducting there?
Rati: We are deeply involved in trying to find the right formula for making a washing soap that does not harm the skin, and a pill that contains all the nutrients without calories as a lunchtime snack for children in balwadis.
“Grihalakshmi”: Madam, do you miss your husband and children?
Rati: I miss all my friends and neighbours. From here, I keep wondering what Mrs. Puri or Mrs Nair, my neighbours, are doing at this time.
“Health And Hygiene”: Madam, what is your special diet now?
Rati: We have frozen cucumber, which combats the harsh effects of space atmosphere on the complexion. Then we have honey tablets for natural slimming. For lunch, we have tinned tomatoes to put the colour back into our cheeks.
“Home Psychiatrist”: Madam, what was your first thought when you left the earth?
Rati: I prayed that my husband would remember to turn off the gas before going to bed every night,
“The Inner Voice”: Madam, do you pray to God there?
Rati: Of course. I have brought along a little idol of Ganesha, and every time I pray, the other two cosmonauts want to know all about the elephant head, and I tell them.
“My Lady”: What are your future plans?
Rati: I will go back to my original occupation as home maker. But I am sure I won’t be satisfied with it for very long. Jai Hind.
(Arnab was not born then or the interview would have been full of his own bombastic answers!!)