I wrote these scripts two years ago.
I feel sad when I see families having problems that don't need to be there.
A husband who claims to be a Christian hits his wife or abuses his kids. This may be because he
had a bad childhood himself during which he was abused by his father or saw his father hitting
Things can change if we keep God at the centre of our lives by obeying His commands about
giving respect to all human beings. Whatever our past may have been, we can have a good future
/ give a good future to our spouses and kids.
There are four chapters in all.
One chapter is devoted to my hero - Zac Poonen (a writer known in Christian circles).
I hope you enjoy reading the story about this normal family.
My lovely grandma Florina
for teaching me what love is
CHAPTER 1 SAMUEL'S MOTHER-IN-LAW COMES
OR A MEMORABLE V
APTER 2 THE BIBLE ST
APTER 3 THE F
APTER 4 THE FAMILY P
CHAPTER 1 SAMUEL'S MOTHER-IN-LAW COMES
OR A MEMORABLE V
Samuel: Sandra's 44 years old husband
Sandra: Samuel's 39 years old wife
Rachel: Their 10 years old daughter
Ruth: Her twin sister
Paul: Their 7 years old son
Joanne: Sandra's 65 years old mom
Victor: Sandra's 72 years old dad
It's 9AM. Samuel and Ruth are at the bus stand, waiting for the bus carrying their mother-in-
law / grandma from Goa to arrive.
Samuel has not had breakfast as he knows that his adorable mother-in-law is going to get him a
lot of goodies to stuff his tummy with.
After what seems like ages they see the familiar red, blue and white colored Paulo bus with the
word `Jesus' on the front windshield coming.
Ruth sees her grandma at a window and waves to her.
Her grandma blows her a kiss.
Joanne gets off holding a large bag and what looks like a container.
Joanne: (To Ruth) Come here my baby!
Ruth goes running towards her and puts her arms round her back, hugging her tightly.
Joanne kisses both her cheeks.
Samuel: (Gives her a hug) Hi mum!
Joanne: Hi son
Joanne: (To Ruth) Baby, can you hold this?
Ruth holds the container.
Joanne: Careful baby, there are eggs inside.
Ruth: Grandma, you've brought eggs all the way from Goa?
Joanne: Yea, because I know how much my son-in-law loves them.
Samuel: (Pleased) Thanks, mum. Let me help you with the bag.
He lifts the bag and his shoulders go down with the weight.
He thinks, "Man, this weighs a ton. What has mother-in-law brought this time?"
Samuel: (To Joanne) Shall we go?
Joanne: Wait, Samuel, there's more stuff in the dickey.
She tells the cleaner to remove a large looking sack. By the bulge at different places, Samuel
knows that there are tender coconuts inside.
Samuel: I think we'll need two rickshaws.
The cleaner puts the heavy sack in a rickshaw and wipes the sweat on his brow. She tips him.
Ruth and her grandma go in one rickshaw and Samuel in another.
Sandra: Hey Mom, so nice to see you again.
Joanne: Nice to see you too.
Rachel and Samuel: Grandmaaaa!
They go running toward her. She hugs them.
After climbing 4 storeys with the large sack of tender coconuts on his shoulders, Samuel is
panting like a dog.
Sandra: What's the matter with you, honey?
Samuel points to the large sack in front of their door.
Sandra: Oh! You poor boy! Sit on the bed and take rest. Let me get you something to drink.
He gulps down some orange juice.
Sandra: Are you okay now?
Samuel: I am. (Smiling) Your mom is responsible for taking my breath away.
Sandra: Mom, you didn't have to get tender coconuts all the way from Goa.
Joanne: Baby, our own stuff tastes different from what we buy outside.
Samuel: You're right, mum. You must be tired so take some rest. I'll see you later. Have got
household chores to take care of.
Sandra: And what chores might they be, hubby?
Samuel: Am going to pay the electricity and internet bills.
Sandra: Okay. Get some pastries on your way back.
Joanne: Don't get anything. I've got a lot of Goan sweets to eat.
She opens the bag and gives the gifts that she has brought for her grandchildren.
Their two cats come and brush their bodies against her legs.
She lifts them up one by one and strokes their backs.
Joanne: (To the cats) I haven't forgotten you guys.
She puts pieces of dry fish in their food bowls.
The cats: Meeooow (Meaning you're so sweet, grandma. Keep coming regularly.)
It's a school holiday for the kids. Ruth goes for football practice and Rachel for her organ class.
Ruth and Rachel: See you later, grandma.
Paul is playing with the toy truck his grandma has brought for him.
Sandra: What can I get for you?
Joanne: Get me some juice, if there is.
She sits on the rocking chair and her eyes spot the dirty curtains on the windows.
Sandra: (From the kitchen) Coming, mom.
She comes with the juice.
Joanne: What is that? Those curtains haven't been washed for ages!
Sandra: Mom, don't start lecturing me, please.
Joanne: Daughter, cleanliness, is next to godliness. God took great pains to dictate the book of
Leviticus to Moses because He wanted His people to live in hygienic conditions. He didn't want
them to fall sick. And I don't want my babies to fall sick.
Joanne may not have led a Bible study in her church back home but she knows the Bible very
well - like the back of her hand. She spends time with her grandchildren, in their free time,
teaching them Biblical values. Samuel is indebted to her because of this.
Sandra: Fine. We'll go and buy curtains tomorrow.
Sandra: (To Samuel) So are we going out to eat tomorrow?
Samuel: We are since it's mum's birthday.
Sandra: I'm impressed that you remember. My guy is always thinking ahead. And where are we
Samuel: That's a surprise.
Sandra: Please don't do this to me, honey. You know how I hate surprises.
Samuel: Well, if you can be a mystery woman I can be a mystery man too.
Sandra: Hope we aren't going to MacDonald's. Please tell me.
She kisses him.
Samuel: Well, my darling Delilah, that kiss is not going to help you extract anything from your
Samson. It will be a nice place. I promise!
He gets distracted by the smell from the kitchen. Joanne is busy cooking.
Samuel: Something delicious is getting cooked. Smells nice.
Sandra: Please, Samuel, tell me where we are going.
Samuel: Okay, on one condition.
Sandra: What's that?
Samuel: That you won't have any more week long surprises for me. They annoy me a lot.
Sandra: I promise.
Samuel: No, we aren't going to a fast food joint. Don't underestimate your hubby. He may be
thrifty but not on special occasions.
Sandra: I know. Was just pulling your leg.
Samuel: I was thinking about taking mum to Shahi, the best restaurant in town since their food is
Sandra: Well, I agree that the food there is good but it's not a nice place for a birthday party.
Why don't we go somewhere where they play nice romantic music?
Samuel: You know of any such place?
Sandra: I know a nice place where they serve good Chinese food. It's called Chinatown.
Samuel: Chinese food, eh? Am not very good with chopsticks.
Sandra: You are not going out to impress your mother-in-law by using chopsticks. You can use a
fork and spoon.
Samuel: Where is it?
Sandra: Near the station. But it's a posh place and very expensive. The last time our ladies
group went there, the person who had taken us out almost got a heart attack after seeing the bill. I
can't risk having my hubby getting a cardiac stroke.
Samuel: So what do we do? Take mum to Kamat's? Look, we need to make this birthday party a
memorable one for her. If Chinatown is as you say the best restaurant around we're taking mum
there and I don't care what the bill comes to. People we love should always come before money!
Sandra: Okay. Let me get you their number. You'll have to call and make reservations. The
place overflows on the weekends.
Samuel: (On the phone) Hi, I would like to make a reservation for seven please. For tomorrow
Reservation-in-charge: At what time, Sir?
Samuel: At 9PM. Thank you.
Sandra: We are six. Who's the seventh person?
Samuel: That's a surprise. You will have to wait till tomorrow to find out.
He heads towards the kitchen.
Sandra: Hey, hey, hey! wait! come back!
Samuel: (Looking back) What is it?
Sandra: I am asking you nicely to tell me. Why can't you?
Samuel: Because you need to learn to be patient.
Ruth and Rachel have gone for a friend's birthday party.
Samuel walks into the kitchen and smells the aroma of the food that has just been cooked.
Samuel: Dinner smells great, mum. What's the specialty today?
Joanne: Beef steak, squid curry and croquettes.
Samuel: You made squid curry? I love squid.
Joanne: I know
Samuel: How do you know?
Joanne: I asked your mom, Joyce and she told me.
Samuel: (Touched) Thanks for going the extra mile, mum.
He thinks, "Mum, you must really like me a lot to do all this. One day I'll make up for this."
Joanne: Anything for my loving son. Hope it is as good as the way your mom makes it.
Samuel: I'm sure it is.
After some time...
Joanne: Okay, my babies, dinner is ready.
Samuel, Sandra and Samuel sit on the floor to eat. Joanne is still standing with an apron on her.
Samuel: Mum, you're not eating?
Joanne: Give me a chance to serve you.
Samuel says grace. He thanks the Lord for bringing his mother-in-law safe and sound and prays
that God may bless her hands.
They get busy eating.
Because Samuel enjoys the tasty food, his plate is soon empty. Joanne starts to fill it up again.
She dumps some more stuff on it.
Joanne: There you go. One more juicy steak for you!
Sandra: Mum, you're putting too much on his plate.
Samuel thinks, "Am I sensing jealousy here?"
Samuel: I see that someone's jealousy is showing.
Sandra's face darkens.
Sandra: What's there to be jealous about? I don't want my husband to look like an over-fed
Joanne: Sandra, can you mind your words?
Samuel: Your daughter is amazing. She wants me to starve when there's delicious food cooked
by someone who loves me.
Sandra thinks, "It's your big mouth that's amazing!"
Samuel: (To Paul) Could you pass me the plate of croquettes please?
Paul passes the plate. He takes 2 more pieces and then looking at Sandra, says teasingly...
Samuel: Honey, you want some?
Sandra: I'm doing fine, thank you.
She gives him a sour look which means, "Have you ever seen me having beef?"
Joanne: How's the curry, son?
Samuel: Delicious. Can't think of a better word.
Joanne: I'm glad you liked it.
Samuel: Mum, you are such a nice cook.
He thinks, "Can you pass on some non veg cooking secrets to your daughter too?"
Joanne: Thank you. Would you like some salad?
Sandra: Yea, have the salad.
Samuel: (To Sandra) Do I look like an ox to you? Greens are for herbivores.
Joanne smiles listening to their childish arguments. She suddenly remembers the fish pickle she
Joanne: There's something else that I got for you, son. I want you to try it.
She goes to the kitchen, opens a container, fries the stuff in mins and gets it.
Samuel: (To Paul) Your grandma is such a nice lady. She took the pains to find out what my
favorite dish is!
Sandra: Someone is suffering from amnesia. He seems to have forgotten about all the `favorite'
stuff that he has gobbled over the years, cooked for him by his wife or should I say his unpaid
Joanne comes back from the kitchen.
Samuel: Oh, boy here it comes. Looks like we are having a feast today!
Joanne: Here it is.
She puts a piece onto his plate. He tastes it.
Samuel: It's tasty. What's it called?
Joanne: Soliye (A Konkani word which means fish pickle)
Samuel: So this is soliye? How come no one served this to me before? Oh, I forgot, I'm living
with a vegetarian cook.
Sandra gives him an acidic look.
Joanne: There is bebinca for dessert (Bebinca is a Goan sweet).
Samuel: I'm so full. I think I won't need to eat anything for a week.
Joanne: Oh no, son, you are going to eat everyday for as long as I'm here.
Samuel: Thanks, mum.
Joanne goes back to the kitchen to get them water to drink.
Samuel looks at Sandra, and to tease her says...
Samuel: I haven't been pampered like this in years.
Sandra: Do you think what you're saying is funny?
Samuel: (Ignoring her question, he continues teasing her) Nor have I ever eaten this well in my
Sandra: Are you finished with your non sensical teasing? You are crazier than I thought!
She thinks, "In about a week's time, you'll look like a pig!
Joanne gets three glasses of water. She then takes a handkerchief and cleans up Paul's face.
Joanne: (To Paul) Would you like one more piece of bebinca, son?
Paul: No grandma, I'm full.
She runs her hand through his hair.
Ruth and Rachel come back. They all have a time of family prayer.
Sandra: It's time for bed.
Joanne: Did you kids take your vitamins today?
Rachel and Ruth: Yes, grandma.
The kids sleep on the bed with their grandma in between.
Samuel and Sandra sleep on a mattress on the floor.
Ruth and Rachel have told their dad to wake them up at 11PM so they can decorate their apt to
give a surprise for their grandma. When the clock strikes 12, she will be 65 years old.
Samuel's phone begins to vibrate at 11PM. It's the alarm that has gone off.
He turns the 0 watt bulb on and goes to Ruth and Rachel and pats them.
Samuel: Time to wake up girls. We've got a lot of work to do.
Rachel: What time is it, dad?
They get busy decorating the walls of the front room.
Samuel is blowing balloons in the kitchen. He blows too much air into one and it bursts making
a loud noise.
Ruth: (Tiptoes into the kitchen) Dad, softly! Grandma will wake up before we're finished.
They are finally done.
Rachel goes to wake her mom and Paul. Paul's eyes are closed. He is sound asleep. Sandra is
sleeping like a log too, hugging a pillow thinking it's her husband's tummy.
Rachel: Mom, wake up, it's time.
Rachel plugs the organ wire into a socket and starts playing happy b'day.
Ruth strums her guitar.
Joanne gets up, sits on the bed and rubs her eyes.
She sees a large colorful banner which reads "Happy 65th Birthday, Grandma. We love you -
Paul, Ruth, Rachel, Sandra and Samuel."
She looks at the banner with joy.
They all sing.
She is warmed by the words of the song. Touched, she takes a tissue and wipes her eyes.
The kids give her presents. She opens them up and thanks them.
Samuel: Here's something from me too. It's nothing big.
She unwraps the beautifully wrapped present and pulls out a nice looking freshwater pearl
Joanne is speechless.
She thinks, "This must have cost a fortune."
Samuel: Do you like it?
Joanne: This is so exquisite. It's beauuutifull. Thank you, son.
She gives him a peck on his cheek.
She thinks, "My son-in-law is so thoughtful. I'll bake him one of my special chocolate cakes one
of these days."
They all go to sleep.
It's 6AM. Joanne is up already and is in the kitchen frying the eggs that she has brought.
Samuel goes to the kitchen.
Samuel: Morning, mum.
Joanne: Good morning, son
Samuel: Did you sleep well?
Joanne: Like an angel.
They have family devotion and then have breakfast.
It's a beautiful day. Joanne feeds rice grains to sparrows sitting on their window.
The day keeps getting better and better for her.
A lot of people call her up to wish her. Among them are her two other daughters, their husbands
and their children. Their message is the same, "We miss you, mom. Wish you were here."
Samuel: We've got about half an hour to get ready to go out and have dinner.
Joanne is standing in front of a mirror wearing a beautiful dress. She takes the necklace gifted
by her son-in-law the previous night. She struggles to put it on so Rachel helps her.
Rachel: Grandma, you look stunning.
Joanne: Thanks, Rachel.
Rachel: I wish grandpa was here.
Joanne: He would have been if it was not the final of the National Football League today.
Rachel: How sad!
Sandra chooses a beautiful black saree with a low cut blouse. She put on matching earrings
gifted by her sweetheart.
At 8:55PM, all of them are at the front door, except Sandra.
Sandra: Yes, yes, I'm coming. I can't find one of my shoes.
Samuel: Not again. Why don't you keep your shoes in one place?
Finally she spots it. She says to the shoe, "Oh, there you are."
Sandra: Hubby, can you come here for a minute?
Samuel: What is it now?
Sandra: I wanted to ask you something. (She looks at his bowtie and reaches up to straighten
She thinks, "Don't you look at yourself in a mirror before going out?"
She admires him for a minute.
Samuel: What is it you wanted to ask? We're getting late.
Sandra: I must say, I love how you look in a shirt rather than a t-shirt.
She thinks, "Sometimes my hubby has no sense of style whatsoever."
Samuel: Is that why you called me here? To tell me that? Okay. Thank you.
Sandra: Hubby, can you tell me now?
Samuel: Tell you what?
Sandra: Who is it?
Samuel: What are you talking about?
Sandra: Who's the special guest?
Samuel: You'll know in an hour's time.
Sandra: What's the big deal? Why can't you tell me now?
Samuel: Because I want it to be a pleasant surprise for you.
Sandra: Forget about it!
Sandra drives them. The car continues to circle the parking lot. Samuel points to an empty spot.
She parks it.
In the restaurant.
Samuel: I made a reservation for seven for 9PM. Where is our table?
Head waiter: You are just in time. Right this way, Sir.