This story is a series narrating the love story of a couple. Their highs, lows, their laughter and tears. Now in their 60s, the story is recounted by the lady. Theirs was an arranged wedding, with all glitz and dreams. Their period of courtship is elaborated in the early posts. They saw each other and gave the 'aye'. Now the saga continues...
The first tear slowly rolled down with a tiny hesitation. The rest followed freely. Huge hiccups engulfed me. Crouching under the water tank, bathed in the moon light, i cry angry tears. His voice still rings in my ears- " You broke my heart, dear." Funny, i fumed. How dare he accuse me of breaking his heart? It was he who did it, in a well planned heist.
Trouble started brewing the morning when the elders started to his place to discuss 'terms' of the wedding. I had bought him two gifts- a figurine of a couple white doves in love and another- a kissing clock! The little boy and the girl dolls walked towards each other in measured steps and smooched each other every minute! Oh, so romantic, i thought. Perfect gifts- first time presents for the fiance. Both neatly packed and thrust into the hands of my little brother, i felt as if i had pulled a coup.
Mother had walked past him and instantly fell for his timid smile and lithe physique. She liked his trembling hands- she did recount it to me later. That was not the case for father, he hated his relatives instantly. The 'discussion' started and after much furor, they fixed the deal. One of his uncles had asked father- " Your daughter had earned so much all these years, you can give more". Duly relayed this by my brother, i was getting more anxious. When the little one said that the fiance did not take part in all this and chose to stay out, i was fuming. How dare he?
Was it not his duty to restrain his people? Did he not like me enough to marry for love rather money? I waited for the storm to ease, dust to settle down and then called him to kick up a fresh one. The moment he he said a gruff hello, i started spitfire. He waited patiently for me to yell, curse and finally say "I hate you." Did i mean it? I am not sure now. But then that was what i said. Not a word for a few moments. Eerie silence the other side and then those words- " You broke my heart, dear." With this he hung up and i stood stupefied, staring at the phone pointless.
I refused to come down from my haunt, mother sent for me couple of times and when i did not turn up, she came upstairs to look for me. She tried to pacify her sobbing daughter and finally played the match maker, trying to explain her son in law was not at fault. Another call from her to him and finally he agreed to talk to me. After much coaxing and cajoling, i accepted his 'apologies' gratefully, for no fault of his and skipped downstairs in mad glee.
I eagerly waited for the car to arrive. All dolled up and ready, i was itching to get to our house- the venue of our betrothal. Frequent phone calls in hushed Hindi- we were both good at it, we conversed with ease while the whole household shook their heads in despair trying to decipher the " Bindaas"and " chumma dho na"! The groom and his party had already arrived and he was wondering at our hand made decorations- a flower rangoli by me, a tray of sugar with our names designed with finely chopped cherries, dangling flower arrangements that we all did the night earlier- uncles, aunts, cousins all together!
The moment my car arrived on the threshold, i got down and ouch- dropped my mobile to the ground- clumsy as usual. As i picked it up, i heard his deep gurgling laughter. There he was, watching me from the window and laughing. I decided not to drop a thing the whole day, in front of him. With much fun, laughter and prayers, we exchanged the rings and garlands. Left to fend for ourselves a few moments, i made him search desperately for our initials hidden in the mehndi magic on my palms. He found it instantly, holding my tiny palm in his huge strong hands.
The 'paparazzi' of the day were happy shooting out tirade and when the lens man asked him to place his hands on my shoulders for a portrait, i snapped. I don't know what possessed me to say a stout "No", but regret my scrapbook misses a few intimate pictures of our first day together. After lunch, when the cars started moving away, i stood at the porch, watching intently. He never turned once towards me, was too busy organizing his people. When he finally slid into his car, he seemed too preoccupied to note me. I stood rooted, my lips trembling, waiting for him to look at me once- a glance. Just a glance. Mother was too anxious that she moved aside.
The line up started leaving. A fine drizzle from above started bathing me and tears were ready to spill out when he rolled down his window pane. With a swift movement befitting a man, he waved once, blew a kiss and the car sped past. I stood dumbstruck and mother erupted in laughter looking at my pathetic face! "Wait..you will pay for this", i swear at him. He made me a complete fool, awaiting His Majesty's orders and i was looking for an opportunity to strike back at him. The opportunity came knocking my doors, soon...
To be continued...
p.s.: Wishing the All India Strike on 20 and 21 every success.
p.p.s.: Yesterday i hit a teen in the counter. Couldn't help it as i was photographed by him in his mobile. Had to destroy his memory card too. Didn't someone tell him " I am an auntie"???
p.p.p.s.: I kind of love interacting with my daughter so much. Last week, one night when i urged her not to drink too much of water, she did it nevertheless. Irritated, i yelled- " Baby...what are you doing?" Her reply was- " Reloading my kidney, mom". Well, too much for a seven year old, i should say! My daughter...