A to Z Challenge

I for Iktsuarpok


Language: Inuit

Meaning: The frustration and annoyance that comes with waiting for someone to show up

We have all been there, at both ends of the equation. We have waited for someone to show up at the appointed time, waited for what seemed like forever and got frustrated and annoyed when they don’t come like they told they would. The frustration that we could have done something worthwhile instead of just twiddling our thumbs sighing and grunting in annoyance while onlookers watch us with curiosity and sometimes pity, and that is when we hide our faces behind newspapers, menu cards or stare importantly at our mobile phones as if we are busy doing something. But that sinking feeling of being alone creeps up.

On the other hand, at least a few times in our normally human life (for those who pretend otherwise, skip this paragraph) we have promised someone our presence at a venue and at a particular time, and we fail to arrive. Everyone has their own reasons, some range from being busy, to held up in an official meeting or the most common excuse (traffic). But no matter what the excuse or reason is, or even how valid it is, the person who has waited, and been subject to curious stares is always irritated and on the edge. Maybe some Inuit people were so moved by this suffering that they invented a word to express it.


Flash Fiction #9

Indra was getting angry. This was not funny. She had been waiting for over an hour for her best friend to show up. Indra shifted on her foot as she noticed the maitre d staring at her in confusion. Her dinner was slowly going cold, and the mild steam that had wafted towards her from the food was long gone.

She looked at her watch and then at the huge clock across her at the restaurant’s far wall. She decided she would give her friend another five minutes, and then take things into her own hands. Indra was loath to leave her food untouched, but didn’t want to seem gluttony by gobbling it all up, hungry though she was. Just as she gathered her things to leave, she spotted her best buddy walk in.

Pretending to be busy, she took up her phone and started swiping through a story book she had been reading. Sindhu dropped into the chair in front of her thankfully, heaving a huge sigh and a huff, saying, “Traffic”.

Not even nodding, Indra looked up at her with a raised eyebrow. Sindhu gulped down the water, asking, “Hungry?” with a pointed look at the untouched food.

“No.” Indra replied calmly, “Hangry.”

“What’s that?”

“I am hungry, and then I am angry. So that’s hangry.”

“Wow. New word. Now I know you are really angry.” Sindhu grinned

“That’s not the only word I have got for you.”

“You have more?”

“Yes. I am Iktsuarpok. Good luck figuring that one out. I am not even sure this is the right usage.”

And grinning at her friend’s expression, she felt as satisfied as she had spoken gobbledygook. She picked up the knife and fork.


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