Saturday, May 19, 2007

Love Actually

The morning sun shone as bright as it ever did in the city of Chennai, especially considering it was the month of May. The rays pierced through the window like bright needles from the blue. It was not just another day, definitely not. This day, 22 memorable years ago, she entered into marital bliss with a person she had not spoken a word to and had looked at for an embarrassing 3 seconds. Strange was the way how certain life-changing decisions took shape - paying little importance and consideration to the opinion of the person concerned. But trust and hope was all that was needed then.

Twenty two years had now passed. She lay on the bed beside the man of her life and asked herself, “Has anything that you have done made your life better?” She looked at the person beside her and simply smiled - the answer was right here. In fact, she corrected herself, “He is the best thing that has ever happened in my life.” She recollected some of their best and worst times together. She realized how ultimately, they had managed to pass the test of a true relationship – to disagree but to hold hands, always.

Feeling wonderful and special, she finally pulled herself out of bed, careful enough not to disturb him from his deep slumber. She enjoyed her warm shower to its very last drop. Draped in a light green sari, her wet hair tied up inside a towel, she began her usual chores of the day. She lit the lamp in the puja room and placed the kumkum in the middle of her forehead. Among the many things that she could do perfectly, this was one. Every time and anytime of the day, she could keep kumkum in the middle of her forehead in a prefect circle - and most importantly, without looking at the mirror.

She walked into the kitchen, chanting slokas and began making coffee. Within a few minutes, she heard sounds from her bedroom and knew that her man was up. The irony remained that in all these years, he most often awoke to the intoxicating smell of filter coffee, rather than the annoying whistle of the cooker! She grinned to herself and began cutting vegetables for the day’s lunch. As she was on with her work, she realized how beautifully and interestingly their lives had intertwined into one another. This reminded her of a quote, “An archeologist is the best husband any woman can have; the older she gets, the more interested he is in her.” She badly wished the author of this quote would walk down to their home so that she could prove his words wrong.

Continuing with her work, she acted as though she hadn’t noticed her husband behind her back He came up from behind and whispered something that she had least expected him to say that morning. He breathed into her ears, “En coffee enga di?” (Where is my coffee?) Fighting her emotions for having to face such a dramatic beginning to the eventful day, she pointed to the dining table. Just then, something managed to catch her eye and she looked back towards the dining table. Standing there was their daughter. In her hand was a bouquet of red roses and a bunch of balloons. Handing over these to her mother, the girl wished them a Happy Wedding Anniversary.

The beautiful woman looked up at her husband and blushed. Spontaneously, he embraced her into a warm hug and winked at his daughter from behind. His daughter smiled back at him and gestured a thumbs up. She left them to themselves in the kitchen and walked back into her room. For the first time in her life, she realized ‘What an amazing feeling it is to discover that you know another person as good as you know yourself… and sometimes even better.’ Her parents proved the best example.

P.S.1: My parents celebrate their Wedding Anniversary on 22nd May. Just thought of dedicating this post for them.

P.S.2: It was quite ironic that everyone (except me!) seemed to celebrate the fact of me turning a year older! My heartiest thanks to all those who dedicated posts for my birthday and wished me. Special thanks to those awesome gifts that surprised me. Thanks a ton guys! It means a lot to me. Huuugggzzz!!!

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Of Chocolates and Cocktails

Siddharth finally got through security, called up his parents from the free phone and bid them a final goodbye, assuring them that he would give them a ring once he landed in his destination. As he cut the call, he felt a heavy lump build up in his throat. However hard he tried, he couldn't erase the image of the tear beaded eyes of his mother. But now, there was no turning back. It was the first time in his life that he felt sick about doing what he had so badly hoped and wished for.

At last, the boarding call was announced. He took a deep breath as if this were his last chance to breathe the air of his homeland. Nervously, settling in his aisle seat, he fastened his seat belt. He finally realized what it felt like to have butterflies in one's stomach. He remembered mocking at his class girls when they told him about how they felt butterflies in their tummy before an exam. Well, till now he had believed that for all the junk food that he ate; his stomach was only home to a family of diverse microbes. But now, he was happy to find out that there was also a mini garden deep within him that attracted butterflies! Gosh! He felt funny that his mind was capable of coming up with such strange ideas even during the most nervous of situations!

A few minutes before the flight was ready for take off, an airhostess came to him with a tray of chocolates and with her usual i-love-an-overdose-of-lipstick-smile asked, "Toffees for you sir?". He smiled at her, picked up one toffee and said thanks. While he was unwrapping the chocolate, his mind flashed scenes of his first flying experience. It was one of the most adventurous incidents in his life. He was traveling all alone with his younger brother. Siddharth had always been proud to give the "big-brother" image and this first aeroplane travel opportunity, all alone with his younger brother, seemed to rest upon him lots more responsibility and pride.

Naughty boys as they were when young, Siddharth's parents made sure that their mischief be kept within the four walls of their home, which most often went in vain. When outside home, their parents would adopt sign language to warn or instruct the guys. One particularly interesting sign language was how their mom would look at them and speak with her eyes whenever they went to a friend's house. If the aunty in that house offered them anything to eat, the first thing that the guys would do would be to look at their mom and wait for her signal to take the offerings. That apart, their hands would already be digging into the plate of snacks. It made no big difference actually.

When that day they were all by themselves on their first flight, the airhostess came up to them with a tray full of chocolates. Having gotten too used to looking for their mother's approval before accepting any offer of food, the younger one looked puzzled and stared at Siddharth. It was not the first time that Siddharth felt a burden of responsibility to guide his brother, but it was definitely the first time he realized the depth of regard that the young one had for him. That innocent sparkle in his brother's eyes was the most beautiful thing he had seen for years. Smiling at the young one, Siddharth gave his consent and they each took one. The airhostess gave out a short laugh and said, "Is that all boys? You can take as much as you want!" All excited about the new found liberty, the two guys grabbed as many toffees as their two little palms could hold.

Spinning back to the present, Siddharth realized that the plane had already taken off and they were now flying at a decent altitude. The airhostess walked to his seat with her drinks cart and asked him to choose his drink. He simply said, “Bloody Mary” and smiled at himself.

P.S.: Sorry for posting at really bad intervals. Have been held up with exams and my intern. And yeah, been wanting to tell u guys one great news! My blog won the "Best Blog of the Day Award" on 29th of April. A BIG thanks to all of you who have been patiently reading my random ramblings! Huuugggzzzz!