Later that day the Scot and I bought tickets for a sunset boat ride. As we waltzed away, a small Indian man who looked like a cross between Jesse James and Chris Brown materialized like Merlin and hooked my hand. He wore all black, his ebony hair slicked back, and an obese gold chain hovered around his neck.
"My name is Ammu. It means love. Come inside my shop! I give you free exam."
I shrugged at the Scot, he smiled, and we followed Ammu into his Ayurvedic shop as submissive as prostitutes.
Ammu monkey-latched onto the area between my thumb and forefinger with his thumb and forefinger.
His eyes wavered like a bisexual's carnal preference. I couldn't decide if he looked like he was having a seizure or being possessed by Casper the ghost. The Scot's face creased into mirth. He looked like a child had just asked him if his wife had two breasts because one produced hot milk and the other cold.
"I know what wrong with you!" Ammu exclaimed five minutes later, eyes shining like a bald man's head and lips slowly spreading back over beetlejuice tobacco stained teeth. He released my hands, leaned back, and clasped his own like a sixty-year-old professor.
"You have crooked back, and one leg too short. One leg longer than other."
I choked on the water I was sipping.
"Oh no no no, I'm actually very healthy, no problems."
"You have pain here?" he asked, pointing to the right leg on a body chart hanging on the wall.
"No, no pain."
"Here?" this time to the lower back.
"No, I told you, no pain."
"Here?" to an arm.
"Here?" to the neck.
"No no, I told you, no pain."
"You have crooked back and too-short leg. I know how to fix. You eat two almonds in morning and two in water glass. Cover glass. Next morning, take off outside of almonds. Then you crush and put in glass of milk. Drink milk with almonds inside. And every day, two drops of coconut oil in... what's this?" he asked.
"Yes. Belly button. Two drops coconut oil in... what's this?"
"Yes. Almonds and coconut oil fix back and make leg grow," he said, chocolate eyes brimming and his face as serious as the plague.
We levitated to leave and he kidnapped my hand again.
"Your Indian name is Cushy!" he announced.
"Cushy? But I'm not fat anymore!" I five-year-old whined.
"Yes, Ksushi. It means happy."
"Oh great. Cushy. That's just fantastic."
For the next three days he would banshee-shriek "Cushy" and rush over to me like I was Ghandi.
As we paced towards the door he rocketed into song. If Dr. Seuss sang and was a robust Indian man, he would be Ammu.
No thank you no sorry
No hurry no worry
No chicken no curry
No clock tower full power twenty-four hour
No toilet no shower
No woman no cry
No sugar no chai
This melody was as cryptic as the Bible.
"Where's the tiger?" I asked.
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