Krishnan Varma’s “The Grass-Eaters” starts with the main character, Ajit, thinking about the time when Misrilal, the father of a boy he tutored, asked him where he lived. Ajit confesses that he lives in a pipe.
Ajit remembers that the first place he lived in, after leaving East Bengal and moving to Calcutta, was a footpath. He describes how crowded and inconvenient the footpath was and how he accidentally woke up next to another woman. After that, he and his wife, Swapna, moved in a freight wagon where they could be alone. One night, however, the wagon was coupled to a train, making them take an unexpected trip away from Calcutta.
Ajit then confesses that he argued with his wife and that he did not know why she despised living in a wagon so much, which he himself found conven...