Romeo and Juliet, Gujarati Style.


“For never was a story of more woe than this of Juliet and her Romeo.”, stupid people, I’d say. Again, pardon me for not liking your story, Mr. William, sir. Romeo and Juliet I claim wasn’t an original creation for something similar happened in a remote village in Saurashtra, Gujarat, a story of Raamo and Jalpa though there are claims of it to be “inspired” from Pyramus and Thisbe by Ovid Metamorphoses Oh, what a name ! I’ve been telling you Shakespeare isn’t as good as we think he is.

It is not important what happened in our “Remote Village” was true or not, what is important is, it was Romeo and Juliet in Gujarati style for Raamo and Jalpa didn’t make mistakes what Mr.William did in his inspired, yet, inspiring creation. Our story like Romeo and Juliet, begins with a street brawl, not because of any irrational English arrogance, but because of business rivalry between two families, for Romeo’s father started selling groceries cheaper than what the union had decided and Juliet’s father was a union leader then.

Our Romeo, was smart, tall built, heavy mustache, gold chains and a stick. A typical “Darbaar” on the other hand, Juliet, was beautiful, athletic, intelligent, heavy mustache, mustache..??? May be parlours didn’t open so early in the morning when the picture was taken. Otherwise, someone who’d be wanted by every man in the village and villages near by. As Shakespeare says, “What’s there in a name”, Romeo initially loved Rosaline, who dumped him,Bad, bad girl. who then moved to Juliet, Rosaline’s cousin. Smart boy.

Fathers generally stand tall against love, and so he did, when Juliet’s father decided to marry her to Sarpanch’s son, Prince. India was always known for her traditions and celebrations in style especially during marriages. So, Juliet’s family invites Sarpanch’s family to a Garba, followed by Dandiya Raas, party. It does not need to be a Navratri in Gujarat to do Garba, it just happens. It also is a trick to enter navratri celebrations without a gate pass, and Romeo and his friend just knew it. Damn Corruption !

Romeo had a reason to attend Garba party. Stop drooling, Gujarat is a dry state, No Liquor! He wanted to get a glimpse of Juliet’s sister, though he knew it was over. Lucky as he was, Romeo’s eyes met with Juliet and they fell in love. They hung out at the corn or whatever fields for it still is by far the best place to hang out with your girlfriend. They did a lot of things they could do it together and alone, but the gist was, they decided to marry going against their parents. They did.

However, unlike, Shakespearean Romeo and Juliet, Jalpa, instead of acting dead went to Raamo. Oh come on, that was the most stupid thing to do. A mistake that Mr. William Sir did was he did not let Juliet talk to Romeo before meeting Friar Laurence who acted smart to give her a potion to make her act dead. Who on earth would not identify between dead and unconscious, especially, if it were Juliet !

Now comes a twist, Romeo’s family do not agree to their marriage and threatens to disown Romeo if he rebelled. Though he convinces them that Juliet’s parents are ready, it was just his father who was not, knowing Juliet was a babe ! Now that you know Romeo was a smart chap, sent a message to Juliet’s family saying she has been kidnapped and he was going to save her but the extortionists demanded money. Gullible father, gives him the amount and after few days, he is back with Juliet. Juliet is back, Romeo has money and her father happy.

By now Romeo’s father was calm. Everything was fine, Romeo invested in his father-in-law’s grocery store and eventually acquired it. Now, Romeo’s family has two grocery stores in the village, Romeo’s father is a union leader, Romeo and Juliet happily married and Juliet’s father still think Romeo saved her from the extortionists.

I told you, Mr. William, Sir, isn’t as great as we think.

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