Tag Archives: happiness

The First Night

Marriages are mostly arranged in India. Mine was no different. It was in the fall of 1999, I had been working for a civil consulting firm for the past four years and was ready to take the big step of marriage. I had a failed relationship when I was in college; the heart break had left me shattered for years. I just didn’t have the courage or the excitement to move on. The pain was pretty intense initially but it waned way with time, slowly bit by bit. Now when I was ready to get hitched, a small part of me became curious, the one which badly wanted to fall in love all over again. That’s when Tara happened to me. She and I had met only a couple of times before we got married. We didn’t get a chance of getting to know each other more, it was only after marriage that we realised how perfect we were for each other.

The first night together is always the most awkward phase in any arranged marriage. I remember Tara walking in with the trademark glass of milk in her hand. Her hands were shivering as she placed the glass on the table and sat right next to me. We both were nervous and we both didn’t know what to speak then.

“What do you know about me, Tara?” I passed a line to break the silence.

“That you work for a consulting firm and you’re a talented civil engineer.”

“About my personality, my character?” I stressed. Her eyes moved curiously towards me.

“I think…that you love speaking a lot. You didn’t give me a chance to speak back then when we met.” She had a sigh of relief as she finally muttered those words. I on the other hand was a little shocked but pleasantly happy. She was finally speaking up and it was my turn to reciprocate.

“You had those curious eyes stuck on me, just the way you have them now. Every time I finished a statement, your expression remained the same so I thought you were expecting more. And so I went on!”

“You have a nice voice Ryan. It felt like I have heard your voice somewhere. It was like a deja vu for me. That’s why that expression I believe.”

“Thank you. That’s a first. Where did you hear me before?”

“Do the math engineer. Where could our lives possibly intersect?”

“I had attended an event in your college. But I don’t know whether you were there in the audience. We were staging a play and I was the narrator. That’s the only connect I can think of. I moved to Delhi, and you to Bangalore.” Still thinking where else she could have heard me.

“Do you remember the host for the event?”

“I don’t, to be frank. But there surely was a lot of hooplah by my friends about the cute host. I on the other hand was busy on my phone, narrating every detail to my ex.”

“You are bang on. But I didn’t knew that I also got compliments! I was too scared of my saree, I had worn it for the first time.” She paused for a while, then continued as she passed me the milk and picked up an apple for herself.

“Ex? What happened, if you don’t mind?”

“Not a problem, it was a long time ago. We broke up after college. Long distance doesn’t work in my case. To be honest it took me time to get over her. It was one of the most difficult periods of my life. I had so gotten used to her company that after we fell apart, I found no one to share them with. My stories, my emotions, I just couldn’t handle them.”

“Then how did you cope?”

“I don’t know. But one thing is for sure, time does heal. I found my voice through my blogs, I tried to showing my emotions in open. I slowly tweaked my quality to become more of an extrovert. It wasn’t easy but I had already made up my mind to make things work. So I think they finally did.”

“That was deep!”

“I have a habit of going deeper in conversations. Hope you don’t mind.”

“I am similar on that note.” She added.

“Tell me your story? Boyfriend?”

“Where do I start?”

“That seems like a long list!” I tried my humour but all I got was a blank expression from her. She sat down near me, after placing back the jewels, with a dead pan expression, looking straight at the wall in front.

“No Ryan. Akash was the only one.”

“What happened then?”

There were tears that started to appear. She spoke slowly and finally uttered, “He is no more.”

“What? How?…Sorry.”

“It was three years ago. There was a car accident, a lorry had rammed into his vehicle. And I didn’t see him again.”

“I had just spoken to him an hour before then. I never knew that it would be our last. I never knew that.”

“I am sorry Tara. I really am.”

“Don’t be Ryan. I am okay now. He is the reason for me starting my NGO, “Rakshak”. It deals with implementing better rules and infrastructure for road safety. We are working with the government to get the Act together, and if brought in & passed by the house it would be revolutionary Ryan.”

“I now remember. I saw your interview in “The Hindu”, Tara. You have wonderful ideas lady, I hope your dream succeeds.”

“Thank you Ryan. Won’t you be supporting me?”

“Always will, always.”

“You still thinking about Akash?” She enquired.

“Yeah. See I will try making one thing clear Tara. I won’t try to take the place what you have for Akash; I won’t ask or compel you to forget him. He is part of you and I respect that.”

I could see her eyes get moist again; she had those curious eyes back on me. She wiped away the tears and made herself comfortable on the sofa.

“Come here Ryan. Are you tired or can you narrate a story to me?”

I smiled as I sat to her left, and narrated the story I know the best. Her expressions, I could never forget them, they were the most beautiful ones I have ever seen. She had her giggle going for her, and I saw her finally the way I always hoped her to be, smiling. The conversation went long; we moved from one story to another but managed to keep our curiosity burning high even after the exhausting talk.  That night we shared a sofa, like all friends do. She dozed off on one end while I on the other. We woke up with a smile for eternity in our eyes but never knew that we would end up divorcing each other eight years later.

I got up from my seat as I saw her coming. It felt like she hadn’t aged at all, the twinkle in her eyes remained alive for me. Though we did have our share of grey hair, but a date was a date. That too after ten long years since we separated. I decided to narrate what I knew the best, and she was all ears to the old story of mine which she had heard enumerable times before. Her curious eyes remained the same, even after eighteen years since that night of our marriage. So I began.

#Tara&Ryan
#EpisodesOfLove

Slurp!

“Don’t make that sound, people are looking at us.” I chirped.
“That’s how I drink my coffee. The sound has a flavour of its own.” She hit back.
“Like this one?” I held out a loud slurp, now even the manager at the counter was looking at us with blank eyes.
“Stop it Ryan. You will get us evicted!”
“Who started it? Flavour and all? I want to find my flavour too.”
“Oh please, can we get over this?”
“Not until I am done with my coffee!” I sipped another loud one. Her expressions changed all of a sudden, she became quiet and pretended that I don’t exist.
“Attitude” I broke the silence with an awkward laugh. But she didn’t reply a word, so I got back to my coffee, and this time it was only silence. As I placed my cup back on the table, I heard a loud sip. There she was giggling her way through, and I couldn’t resist but to fall for her a little more.
“We could have done that together.”
“Next time for sure! we are meeting your parents tomorrow right. We will do it there.” She winked as I followed her outside dumbfounded with no words to counter; like always she had the last laugh.

#EpisodesOfLove
#Tara&Ryan

Two Tablespoons Salt

She picked up salt instead of sugar and added two tablespoons of it. I sat down to have my cup of tea, and I wasn’t amused. I rallied myself to the bathroom only to return red faced with a simple question in my mind.
“What did I do now?”

She chose not to answer. I tried hard to think what I had forgotten, what special could this day be. I very well knew Tara’s way of expressing her displeasure, it had almost become a routine, at least once every month. But today’s tea was the most salty that I have been yet served, that made me only more perplexed to find the reason.

“Tell me, what did I do wrong?” I sat down, dumbfounded, looking at her.

She slowly passed a note and made her way towards the balcony.

“Do you remember the day you proposed?” The note screamed out the memories of our past. It was a pleasant day, a decade ago, and it was our first date. We had been together for over an year before that, but the time zones were just too different for us to go out even once together. The night went on well; we were too into each other that we never realised when the time passed away, and how I got on my knee and proposed to her on our very first date. She said yes, if anyone is till wondering. And the rest as everyone says is history lies the fact that we had been married for almost a decade now and still can’t get enough of each other.

But today I had forgotten that beautiful night, so I had to do what I do the best. I went into the kitchen, and made ourselves hot steaming coffee and came out with her cup held out. I handed her the cup and sat next to her with my arm around her shoulder, whispering silently along the breeze, “I love you, my lady. I always will.” She sipped into her coffee with a gentle smile, and then slowly moved over my chest to reach a place close to my lips to finally reply, “I love your coffee, and I love you too.”

#EpisodesOfLove
#Tara&Ryan

V-Day

“I usually heed to those who question why we celebrate a particular day for love; isn’t every day, one for love? I silence myself with a makeshift happy nod while trying hard to keep that itsy bitsy part of me that still believes in this day from exploding all over the other. But today when I look back at all those questions, and my stand of supporting the naysayers, my silence sounds completely illogical to me. The hard truth that we happen to realise a little late is that not every day we give for love, I mean in literal sense; just try to question how often do we go out of our way and compliment someone or how often do we utter the words, “I love you” to that special one, even though we know that the other might be the perfect one for us. It just doesn’t happen; it stays in our mind for an eternity before vaporising in the mystery of our confused mind. So sometimes all we need is a day, however cliched it might sound, we need it to ease the unease and give a push to one’s hopes only to see where the thoughts in our mind finally lead us upon to. So in this world of unlimited technology decorated with artificial emoticons, I meant the emotions, it’s okay to take a day off and be with your loved ones to make them feel special in the best possible way. It could be with that friend you fell in love with years ago but still are too scared to say, or it could be your parents who haven’t seen you since ages because you are too busy making excuses, or it could be as simple as a compliment to a random stranger who you find amusing while your lonely walk back home. It could be with anybody, it could be anywhere, but make sure you convey your emotion, your care, this day. Because the other thing about cliched things are that everyone knows about them, making things a lot easier for us to convey. So go take your chances, and make this valentines worth remembering.”

All the very best 🙂

#HappyValentine’sDay

The One before the last

Fiction

Title: 21 year old Ryan’s Mysteries of life

Do I believe in miracles? May be I don’t, but maybe I would someday. I get these thoughts where I start seeing these special happenings in a much broader way as I flow through these new experiences in life.

When I look back in time, there was a point when I thought miracle was something which only God could perform. Later, I started to associate them with my family, friends and also the good things which kept happening all around me. And now, where the rationalist phase has been kicking in harder and harder day by day, I find myself looking at every possible observation to find that miracle in life, but I still remain confused.

I keep wondering by posting these simple yet unsolvable questions, which have got associated with joy and happiness. What are these two to me? Who do I associate them with? I have no idea, but the only thing which keeps me pushing is the happiness to wander. The happiness to move restlessly to find that miracle in life which would bring me closer to what actually joy is for me; this is something which I look forward in life…May be someday I would witness my miracle, till then let me keep my wings loose, let me be everywhere, let me be the wanderer that I so desire.

I closed this commentary in a neat yellow coloured envelope with golden bordering which had speckles of shiny dust sticking to it. It might have got stuck on to it when I placed it on my dusty table; I should have been more careful, thinking to myself. I did have a name to address this envelope which I had carefully written beforehand, “My Dear Tia”.

After finishing the work, I took the envelope back to the shelf where there were many more like them, each with a different bordering but the colour yellow always remained. That’s the colour my daughter likes, so it was a simple choice for the letter as it is addressed to her.

Every envelope has a story which had mesmerized and had kept me thinking when I was her age, maybe I just wanted to pass it on to her, maybe I wanted her to understand me better. Now as she is going away to a different place for the very first time, I thought the time was ripe to hand them over to her but I had one last letter to write.

I know the distance would be painful but I also know that it is for her own well, atleast that’s what I keep saying to myself; education is far more important than the many miles we would be kept apart. May be on those days when she misses me the most or is stuck with a dilemma which she is hesitant to share, she might just pick one of the letters and read. And hopefully she might find an answer in the questions that kept me wondering or may be add another question to it. But in anyway, she won’t feel alone as she would always find me in these thoughts, and sometimes even make her realize that her dad went through similar stuff and it is nothing to be afraid of.

Now as I try to arrange these letters in order, a tiny tickle of tear falls on to the name in one of them. I tried brushing it off but the impression was already made. I knew she would notice it, but I couldn’t help it, she was going away and I was getting worried about how she would cope up with the world ahead. But I did know deep down, that she will, she is my girl, she is born to succeed and I knew I would always be there to make sure that it happens.


Note: Coming back to the miracle which I was talking about, I did find it and it’s the very person who I am writing these letters for, my little angel Tia.

The ‘Dream’ Kite

Flying my dreams on a windy day,
They soar a little and fall another,
Steadying the grip by pulling it close
For giving it the flight it much deserves.

The paranoia of fall dims my vision,
Becoming the dark cloud
That strikes lightning at will,
Matter of time when everything pours to nil.

I loosen the string further
To allow my dream to breathe,
Living was not a choice
But living for a dream is.

The Drunken Night

Fiction

I kept looking at my phone but the message never came. I knew she won’t come but she could have messaged me atleast. I tried contacting her which she reluctantly picked up and gave me the same old reply of hers, “Sorry Ryan, I can’t make it”. Before I could say anything, she hung up the call.

I did have the bartender to pour me my drinks, which kept flowing one after the other, I didn’t hesitate, neither did he stop. I was totally out of my senses when I tried walking out of the bar, even reaching my car was a distant dream and driving it home was possibly an impossible occurrence.

There something happened, in that very car parking area where I was trying all my might to insert the key to get my vehicle started, but to no avail. When I finally gave up, and rested my head over the steering, there came the knock on my window shield and a sweet voice which followed. I couldn’t remember much of what she said, but did know what happened next. I was on my bed, recollecting the dream and the angel in it with a severe migraine to accompany. Atleast I think that’s what happened.

As I tried getting up, I found a note attached on the cupboard which said “Meet you in the bar at 6. Don’t be late.” It was already five, and the bar was a little faraway place, so had to hurry but didn’t know for whom. I got ready and went down, but couldn’t find my car; I did have my keys to my surprise. All sorts of questions started to rise in my already annoying head, so I decided to concentrate scene by scene, right from the start.

There surely was a knock on the window shield, did I reply to her? I would have because she was nothing short of an angel, even my drunken self would have realised that. But what did I speak to her? Is she the one who wrote that note for me? Was that note for me or for my roommate? It can’t be for him; he is been out of town for a week and won’t return for another 10 days. It must be her!

As I tried gulping the usually smoother JD (Jack Daniel’s), I still couldn’t recollect a word from yesterday. I faintly remember the way she looked, but that wasn’t sufficient for me to recognize her, especially when it’s Sunday and the bar is totally full. The watch beamed 6PM, while I still had no sign to locate her. Then I got a call, this time it was Aisha; yes the same person who never showed up yesterday and the reason I got so drunk. I ignored her call, I didn’t want any apologies, I just wanted her then but now I don’t think so.

Talking to myself

Me: Hold on, I want to be with Aisha even now. The thought of not being with her, makes me sad. I shouldn’t be waiting here for some random person, while I must be convincing Aisha about how much I love her. I should tell her what I feel!

As I got up from my seat to leave, I felt a tap on my shoulder, only to realize that it was Aisha standing next to me, and cursing me for not picking up her call.

Me: What are you doing here? (~little worried!)

Her: To have my drink and may be dance a little, I think everyone comes here for the same reason.

Me: Smart answer, but now tell me the truth. You don’t generally come here until its important or for meeting someone, who you eventually ditch in the very last minute.

Her: Hey, I was busy yesterday. I did try calling you again to inform you that I will be a little late but your phone wasn’t reachable.

Me: You told me that you won’t be coming!

Her: Just after that call, I felt a little bad for making you wait; so took a little time off from my work and headed this way to meet you. As your phone wasn’t reachable, I thought of surprising you which I don’t think you were, when I showed up.

Me: You came to the bar yesterday?

Her: Yeah, we even spoke to each other. Do you remember anything from yesterday?

Me: Oh my God, was that you in the parking who helped me get home?

Her: You were trying to drive a car without even inserting the keys, I had to help!

Me: (In a lower tone) So you were my angel?

Her: What?

Me: Nothing actually. Thank you Aisha!

Her: Oh please, for all those words you said yesterday, I must be thanking you.

Me: What words? (Mind Voices: Did you curse her, you moron did you curse her??)

Her: I love you too Ryan. I don’t know why it took you so long to tell me this.

Me: (Dumbstruck!!) Did I? What? Propose to you?

Her: You told me that I was the most beautiful person you have met and have been in love since the time you saw me.

Me: (To myself) That I really am. Oh my god, I told her; I was dying to tell her from a really long time.

Me: These words used to run in my mind, every time I see you or speak to you or even when I remember you. I do love you, more than anyone else I have known.

Her: Hold on Ryan with your dialogues and all; Full on filmy they are, write a few of your own, then you can use them. I would be happy to listen.

Me: Haha! Would you like to dance with me?

Her: Sure, I would love to.

As the lights went dim, and music went mild, we found each other amongst all inhibitions by just being there for one another. These chances are rare to come but when they do, it’s nothing like them.


Quoting from the Alchemist

“And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”