Monday, May 18, 2015

Returned, with Thanks!

It was a typical Saturday evening: TV, phone and browsing were the only three things on my agenda, until I got a call from my best friend. I could call him that given how close we were from school days. Partially because he had helped me during my troubled times at school, he was a friend in need. Dhruv and I weren’t friends before that day, but the way he stood up for me and took responsibility for a crime I was falsely accused with, I was humbled. I had another reason to befriend him as well. I was new to the school, new to the city and had no friend of my own. I needed company. As childish as it may sound, the bond that formed for no concrete reason lasts till date.

Dhruv is not the perfect son one could ask for, as made his mother run for her life, cursing herself for bringing up a brat like him. His dad had given up hopes on him settling down in life, responsibly. He on the other hand chose the path to living life the fun way. His dad’s money and lavish lifestyle caught up on him early on and he was deep down under it to come out of it to reality. He cared for no job of his own and hadn’t thought of sharing his life with a partner beyond one night stands. I was a simple man with an ordinary lifestyle. Topper from school and college, joined the most coveted IT organization and now a project manager, earning well to live a simple life, saving for future, for me and future family. I believed in love. I hadn’t met the one yet, but haven’t be searching either. Dhruv and I were different, but respected each other and mutually trusted the friendship between us. Outside his phantom world, I was the only person he sincerely admired and wished to live like, but voluntarily chose not to. I would not approve of anyone like him, let alone befriend one, but he was my person, he was the company I longed for and got when no one else was around. I liked him for that sincerity and did not question him on his behavior.

Dhruv’s parents decided to get him hitched at the earliest and pass on the responsibility of fixing him right to the so called lucky girl. Arranged marriage was something off the cards for him, but he budged only to reduce the badgering at home. He had his escape routes planned. He knew he had me for support, rain or shine. The call was precisely for that. He wanted me to come along to see her with his family, if possible see if I would like her more and save him from the troubles of marriage. He has never given me an option. I have almost always obliged, this time being no different. 

The whole event was a good time off from a routine Saturday afternoon of more TV, phone and browsing routine. We were greeted by her parents, offered coffee and sweets and when we were bored of random talk, she was asked to come out of her room for us to have a look, however weird that may sound, blame the process. Maya, came in with no hustle. I looked at her for a second and gently turned away not wanting to have an opinion or influence on my best friend’s probably future wife. More importantly, I did not want to end up liking the girl myself. But I did. Not like, but fell in love the one second I had looked at her. I did not know she had too. Maya, a simple and elegant girl for her age, too simple for an event such as this, but too elegant to catch the attention of any honest man. She was drop dead gorgeous and needed have to show it off with extravagance. She looked at me the very same second and smiled, probably not knowing I wasn’t the one. To be honest, the smile made me nervous and look away. Dhruv’s family was happily chatting with her. To me she sounded melodious. Dhruv was supposed to talk to her alone. They were planning to go to the coffee shop nearby for a quick chat and he dragged me in at the last minute, asking me if I could join. She did not complain and I as always obliged. He was going to say a “No” and try asking if she would consider me instead. Before he could say anything, she blurted she was not ready yet and that she had done a quick background check on Dhruv and wouldn’t care to consider him given that he wasn’t financially independent. She proved to be the strong person she looked. She thanked us for the company and stormed out. I hadn’t spoken a word nor looked at her eye to eye the whole fifteen minutes we were there. 

Dhruv was both relieved and frustrated. Relieved that he didn’t have to fall into the marriage trap yet, frustrated that he was turned down and not the other way round that he could take a pride on. He wasn’t in love with her at any level, but he did think she was beautiful and wished he had met her outside the arranged marriage setup. The true friend he was, he checked with me if I was interested in her. I conveniently lied to him and hid my feelings. It would crush him to know I was madly in love with the girl who had hurt is male ego. I felt bad for myself that I wouldn’t pursue her for the same reason. 

A week passed and I had kept myself occupied enough to not give my mind a free second to think about Maya. Thanks to a heavily loaded work week and close family wedding to attend to. Family weddings always take a toll on your emotional stability from a relationship standpoint. The numerous questions on one’s relationship status, willingness to get married and suggestions on potential brides to be. I had always wanted to shy away from such a crowd, but my parents believed in family ties and I believed in them. This one wedding was different. I met my cousin Parth after ten years. I also met Maya, after seven long days. They were talking to each other, as if they had known each other for a long time. Parth waved at me and I was hesitant to reciprocate the welcome, but courtesy demanded I did and I did. I had always had my issues with him being the preferred grandchild to my grandparents. He was smarter in looks and education and nonetheless, he was their NRI grandson and I was just hanging around, around them. I was equally qualified but their typical South Indian contemporary outlook shunned them from accepting so. I had stopped expecting them to change their mindset. I had started getting used to proving my excellence primarily to my parents and occasionally to everyone else. I was happy for myself, beyond Parth can ever be. 

Parth and Maya were laughing about something when I reached their table. They had recently met at Maya’s place, thanks to both their fathers entering into a business partnership. They seemed to have hit it off and liking each other’s company. I did not want to interfere, I did not want anything more from this rendezvous myself. I stayed quite. Maya’s soft “Hi” and a generic enquiry on my life made me smile within, but Parth, the charmer had my answers for her and took my words away. I did not have the moment I deserved.  It was time and we bid goodbyes and exchanged phone numbers to stay in touch. I never did, involuntarily with Parth and intentionally with Maya. 

A month went by and I got a call from Maya one Saturday evening, when I was busy with random browsing. She asked me out for dinner and I couldn’t say know to her. I offered to meet her at the restaurant directly and when we did meet, I knew I wasn’t going to walk out before asking her hand in marriage. “It was my mistake to not have kept in touch after Dhruv episode. You were there, you were quiet and I was curious and had questions”, she hurriedly blurted out her agenda soon after we placed our orders to the waiter. I smiled and asked if her marriage with Parth has been fixed. She was shocked, I could say from her expression. I was shocked too, I had no clue I was going to ask her that right away. “How do you know? We hardly know each other”. She had it all written on her hasty way of speaking. She wanted to know from me about me and why she wanted to talk to me. She wanted to know from me, if she can say no to everything else happening around her. “I had liked you the very instant I saw you at our place. For a second I thought it was you who had come to see me and thanked my stars for me being fine with the whole ordeal. I had missed you right from the time I went out of the café saying no to Dhruv”. I wanted to ask her what made her wait, but she was unstoppable, she continued talking. “Parth was a good friend. Got to know him just about the same time. I liked him and didn’t have a reason to say no when our parents asked. He was nice all along and perfect marriage material at that. I said yes and the wedding is fixed for next month”. I wanted to ask why bother to meet me now and talk about all this. She never gave me a chance to ask. “I thought I liked you as much. I would have said yes if you were alone the first time. But I never had the chance to know you better. I never gave you a chance. I never gave myself a chance to cherish that first feeling of love I had. I thought both of us deserved at least that”. I fell in love with her, all over again, for her attitude. But I wanted to ask what she was expecting me to do. She was ahead of me. “Do you think all this makes you wonder why I am even talking to you at this instance and I am better off with Parth?” She finally asked the question she had come all the way to ask. I had never been this serious before when I responded to her, “So what do you want to do, call Parth or your dad to call off the wedding?” and she had that thankful smile for the decision I had made for us. 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Aaah... games from my past!

Just when I looked at a 10-in-1 board game set that we recently brought, (oh, I so wanted to type "I" and fell into the "we" culture! Am growing old, ain't I?) I was reminded of how the games from my past have moulded me! Let's leave the all famous Chess, Carrom, Snake and Ladder, Trade (yes, totally Indian!) and other indoor games passed on generations after generations.. let's leave all outdoor games those were a different "ball game" altogether! Am just nostalgic about a whole different set of "lunch time games" that made me learn!

School days and break times have been the most useful, fruitful and entertainingly educative hours of my life! I learnt from people, from games, from chattering and from everything inside the campus that I hold on to till date...

When I talk about these that were played with paper and pencil (or the rough note book that used to be an additional baggage in the school bag!), I now find them online, on phone apps, as board games and all around! Still fun, but misses the "group" component that made them more fun!

Recent finds online include:
1) "Name, Place, Animal, Things!" - Man, I still remember not knowing any other animal but for "Donkey" and the extinct "Dodo" for the letter "D"!!! (There are different cumbersive and boring online versions that stand no match to friends approving and disapproving of fictious names, places, animals and things!)

2) "BINGO!" - No, not "Housie", not "Tambola"! They come with cards someone else designed! Of all the designing skills that went into drafting one's own 5x5 matrix and the sheer joy of screaming "BINGO", no other version beats the fun in this. Me as a kid would not leave a single parchment (yes, even the tiniest piece I used to find in hotel rooms) free of drawing the Bingo matrix, even in the remotest of places we would have travelled to!

3) For those who call this game by this name alone - "Chi, Koo, (Li), Baa!" - Again, not Stone, Paper, Scissors! It used to be Chi, Koo, Baa mania at school, at home, at every place we go! We played at every possible break/ between class periods at school, had a tournament among cousins, taught my Dad to play it with his social circle (and he eventually did play!). It was madness! Wonder how people sit in front of a computer screen and play the online version!!!

4) "Memory" - or that's what we used to call, or guess nobody really bothered about what it was called and it was just played! The typical "I went to the market and bought apples", "I went to the market and bought apples and oranges", "I went to the market and bought apples, oranges and bananas", ........ - This can never be justified in any other form!

5) "Hangman" - I still play it on my mobile, but it was much more fun to draw a hangman step by step rather than watch the app draw one when u suck!!!

These were probably the top five that struck my mind. There were few others that were fillers and few others that just din't mean so much to me to remember after years :) But these above meant a childhood!!!

Hail paper! Hail Pencil! Hail "Rough Notebook"! and Hail "Lunch Breaks!" that I now miss...

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

மேகம் பொய்த்தது!

Note: It's been ages since I wrote in Tamil or updated my Tamil Blog.. (that's my way of saying please ignore spelling mistakes!) Thought it makes more sense to stick on to one place for all the ramblings, jottings and outbreaks! 


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அவள்: இனிக்கு weather ஒரு மாதிரி இருக்கு-ல?
அவன்: ஏன்? எழுந்துக்கவே மனசு வரல-னு சொல்றியா?
அவள்: இல்ல, நான் மட்டும் தான் வீட்டுல தனிய இருக்கேன்-னு சீக்கிரமே எழுந்துட்டேன், வெளில வந்து பார்த்தா ஒரே இருட்டிண்டு, மேகமூட்டமா இருக்கு! ரெண்டு நாளாவே மழை வரும்-னு பார்த்து வெளில போகாம வீட்டுலையே இருந்துட்டேன் வேற... இனக்கு அம்மா ஏதோ meeting-க்காக Bangalore போயிருக்கா... night-க்குள்ள வந்துட்டா நல்லா இருக்கும்!
அவன்: ம்ம்ம்ம்ம்ம்.... பயம் போல!
அவள்: நெஜம்மா பா.. பயம்-னு இல்ல.. ஒரு மாதிரி இருக்கு... that's all :)
அவன்: இந்த மாதிரி climate-க்கு-னு ஒரு அழகு இருக்கு... மரம்-லாம் என்னிக்கும் இல்லாத பச்சையா தெரியும், எதிர் வீடு இனிக்கு தான் கட்டினா மாதிரி பள்ளிச்சுனு இருக்கும், வானத்துல கருப்பு colour ஒரு welcome change-ஆ இருக்கும்...
அவள்: நீ பாட்டு சொல்லிண்டே போ...ஆனா, இங்க நான் யோசிக்கற விதமே வேற... பார்க்க எவ்ளோ அழகா இருக்கோ, அதே அளவுக்கு silent-ஆ இருக்கு! ரசிக்கனம்-னு ஆசை தான், ஆனா....

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அவன்: hello!
அவள்: hello! நான் தான்...
அவன்: என்ன திடீர்-னு chat-லேர்ந்து log-off பண்ணிட்டே!
அவள்: current போச்சு, இதுலே பேசலாம், பிரச்சனை இல்ல..
அவன்: current போச்சா? ரொம்ப நல்லா இருக்குமே இப்போ! சரி அத விடு, வேற எதாவது பேசலாம்! இப்படி பேசற chance அடிகடி கிடைக்காது!
அவள்: என்னமோ சொல்லு.. hey..  எனக்கு உன்ன இப்போ பார்க்கனம் போல இருக்கு... வீட்டுக்கு வரட்டுமா? Aunty கிட்டயும் phone-ல தான் பேசிருக்கேன், பார்த்தா அவங்களும் சந்தோஷப்படுவாங்க-ல?
அவன்: இனிக்கு வேணாம், நீ இப்போ பேசு, evening வெளில போலாம், plan பண்ணிட்டு சொல்றேன். 
அவள்: ம்ம்ம்... 
அவன்: நெஜம்மா, சரி... அத விடு, என்ன சாப்ட்டே? என்ன பண்ணே?
அவள்: பெரிசா ஒன்னும் பண்ணல, அம்மா இட்லி வெச்சுட்டு போயிருந்தா, அத சாப்ட்டேன்...

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அவர்: யாரு மா நீ?
அவள்: Gautham இருக்காரா?
அவர்: இங்க யாரும் அப்படி இல்லையே!
அவள்: இந்த address தானே கொடுத்தார்! நான் கூட அவரோட வந்திருக்கேனே..
அவர்: ஏதோ தப்பான address-க்கு வந்திருக்கே மா... மழை வரா மாதிரி இருக்கு... சீக்கிரம் வீடு போய் சேறு!
அவள்: இப்போ தான் அவரோட பேசிண்டு இருந்தேன், phone battery போச்சு, மனசு சரி இல்ல, பார்த்தே ஆகணம்-னு வந்தேன்... உங்க போன் தாங்களேன், ஒரு call பண்ணி check பண்ணிடறேன்...
அவர்: இந்தா மா, சீக்கிரம் பேசிட்டு வெய்... என் time-அ waste பண்ணாதே!
அவள்: thank you sir. just 2 minutes.
அவர்: என்ன மா? ring போகுதா?
அவள்: number does not exist-னு வருது!?!?!?
அவர்: ?!?!?!

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அம்மா: Gayathri, தூங்கினது போதும், 10 மணி ஆச்சு, எழுந்திரு, சுட சுட இட்லி பண்ணி வெச்சிருக்கேன், சாப்ட்டுக்கோ, நான் evening first flight-ல வர try பண்றேன்! 

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Friday, August 19, 2011

When marriages are made in Bhoologam... - "It's a Groom's thing!"

Let's not leave the groom alone! After all he's responsible for half the wedding and half the marriage itself!

The worst nightmare for the groom (next to saying "Yes" to the girl) is shopping for the wedding! Ever thought of what all goes into his head? Here goes a partial list....

  1. I hate shopping!
  2. I get to wear only a white colour boring dhoti for 80% of the wedding, while she gets a saree of each colour, and two for each occasion!
  3. I hate shopping! It's such a boring activity!
  4. Thanks to the concept of Reception, I get to wear something other than a Dhoti!
  5. The total count of clothes stands at 5:9 (groom:bride)! (Is anybody fighting for Mens' equality?)
  6. I hate shopping! How do girls do it all the time?
  7. I am least bothered about the dhotis... the mothers would get them right! (Yea, how much can I think for a white dhoti with a red and green border?)
  8. I hate shopping! I do believe it hard!
  9. What? I cant's get my wedding clothes before she gets her sarees? Damn!
  10. I hate shopping! I don't get bored of saying it! I get bored shopping!
  11. I thought I only had 4 colours (white, half white, blue, grey) to choose from, now that she's got a saree of her dreams, I get to choose the only colour that complements and supplements her saree! (Ofcourse, white!)
  12. I hate shopping! There's not much I can do about it!
  13. She shops for me! (Ok, this is a blessing in disguise, and am not complaining)
  14. I hate shopping! I don't get to shop for either of us!
  15. I don't have the time to shop! She had 4 months and I get 4 hours? (She is so going to say I am to be blamed!)
  16. I hate shopping! Let's get done with it...
  17. I want to look like a prince! But I don't want those expensive clothes!
  18. I hate shopping! Too much to think!
  19. Ok, I need to get two sets of expensive garments, she will select them, I need to try them out and approve of her selection and wear them as prescribed by her... That'll make me look perfect and more importantly relieved! (She happy, me relieved!)
  20. I hate shopping! But now I know what's the best thing about getting married!
  21. ......
  22. ......
  23. ......
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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

When marriages are made in Bhoologam... - "You are invited!"

Trust me when I say inviting people are the best part of a wedding (yes,
way better than shopping, saree shopping in particular, no matter how crazy about sarees you can get!) And nothing matches the joy you get on inviting people in person :)

We (roughly around now, the bride and groom start using the two letters more than the single letter previously religiously used!) bang our heads to come out with the most unique invite ever! (yes, every wedding invite is unique and very precious to that particular bride and groom!) And as for parents, every invite is a template, there's a red, there's a yellow, the wordings have been pre-decided centuries back by ancestors, and the only unique aspect it the actual names alone! (I totally adore the traditional yellow invite, and learnt a lot from that parchment myself!)

Coming down to the era of web invites (e-vites as my brother would force me into calling it!), from websites, to micro sites to scanned invites, the thought process never stops... More importantly, people brush up their English Literature from school and college promptly to get all the wedding vows, wedding verses, love messages and love poems, sonnets, couplets and
doughnuts in place! Imagination goes out on the air and what comes out it what one loves to see as their own wedding invite for ages to come and nothing shall minuscule the joy of inviting near and dear ones with the best of their works!

Deviating a little and making this post a little specific to my wedding, I hereby share the making of my wedding invite.... snippets from behind the scenes!

1) All of us know it's a perfectly arranged marriage, still we explored the option of eloping!!! (I had this dialogue rehearsed right from the time the first version was out!)




















2) We even tried getting converted into the other half of Tam-Brahms, so that we don't have to change the invite further!




















3) But finally, we knew we can't change and ended up being the real ourselves!!!




















4) Not to forget what we believe in, when we say it the TamBrahmRage ishtyle....




















This being brought out in public, wondering what would have gone behind the scenes of the hundreds of wedding invites I've seen over years... am sure there is a story behind each one of them!!!

And once again, we, Ram and I, can't wait to see you all at the wedding :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

When marriages are made in Bhoologam... - "Sarees all the way!"

Remember Rukmini's kalyanam? I might (not) be over exaggerating when I say "Saree(s) are more important in the wedding than the groom" (Disclaimer #1: Definitely not the case in my wedding, that's around the corner! Disclaimer #2: Hubby-to-be rocks! Disclaimer #3: End of Disclaimers...).

It's not just the groom who gets intimidated by a six yard silk saree (an additional 3 yards incase of a Tam-Brahm, of which we can talk in length a lil later!), it is also the entire family and friends circle! Literally every member gets to decide (with totally guided assistance from the bride herself) on what to wear (rather what not to wear) based on what the bride wears! It's not just the groom's attire, but also the wedding hall decorations, floral arrangements, garlands and a whole bunch of wedding planning that totally and entirely depends on the bride's saree(s)! (Gosh, I am so lucky to be on the luckier side :P) Come on, it's nice to have the right contrast on the wedding photograph you are going to look at for ages to come!!!

This being said, none should have a doubt as to why "Wedding Saree(s) Shopping" is the mother of all shopping and kick-starts the wedding prep! The purchasing of the saree(s) involves more religious sentiments than the wedding itself! There needs to be the right day (early enough to get the blouses stitched on time), right time (all the 7 planets as per astrology and the 2 shadow planets need to get in perfect sync and help the cause), right shopping party (essentially every female member in both the families, including kids and pets and one male member to accompany them, handle the cash and carry the bags), consensus on the right shop (between the families), consensus on the colours (inside the bride's ever-confused head), bride's patience to get every saree draped around (and MMS/ e-mail the trial pic to the rest of the deciding party who couldn't make it to the shop!) and more importantly consensus on the final saree (or set of sarees)! Phew!

Did I mention a nine-yard saree somewhere above? That has a few more checks before it can become the bride's... All the right things above have to be doubly right and all the consensus should be doubly strong!

Finally when all the sarees are in place and the bride, hence the groom and also both the families are happy, that's when we all say in chorus "Let rest of the wedding prep begin!"

Friday, July 22, 2011

When marriages are made in Bhoologam... - "The Rendezvous"

ren·dez·vous
n. pl. ren·dez·vous - A meeting at a prearranged time and place.
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Did I change the order of events? Did I get the process wrong? Aren't the event leads and key players (yes the families, extended families and ofcourse the girl and guy under scrutiny) supposed to meet? Aren't conventional meeting places (girl's house) shunned out of practice and replaced with so-called neutral or non-committal hangouts (temples! restaurants! friends' place! friend's friend's friend's place and so on!)?

Rendezvous #1:

Location: Temple in the heart of the city
Participants: Girl's party (a team with more than 3 members is fondly referred to as 'party' and strictly no connection with any political views!), guy's party, girl and guy
Duration of scene: Half an hour for members of each party to get introduced to each other and 5 mins for the girl and guy to talk before they hopefully say 'Yes'
Gist of the 5 min seal-the-deal talk:
Minute #1 - girl says 'Hi', guy says 'Hi', girl says her name (not that it wasn't known before), guy says name, followed by silence
Minute #2 - both of them say they aren't sure what to talk, followed by longer silence
Minute $3 - typical "Tell me about yourself" interview question posed to girl, she's well prepared and completes her entire education and professional life history in 48 seconds, followed by shorter silence
Minute #4 - boy is posed the same question, he is definitely less prepared but still manages to finish it in 56 seconds, followed by just a pause!
Minute #5 - They decide to get back to respective parties and convey their decision!

Five minutes later, both parties scream with joy, "Ah! They said 'Yes'!"

Rendezvous #2:

Location: Girl's house
Participants: Same as Rendezvous #1
Duration: Similar to Rendezvous #1
Gist of the seal-the-deal talk: Girl and guy don't stop talking and get back to the respective parties within the stipulated time (1 hour as per the unwritten norm!), respective parties rush to the talk floor and assume the result, girl and guy blush and end of scene!

Five minutes later, both parties scream with joy, "Ah! They said 'Yes'!"

Rendezvous #3:

Location: Skype! (For the technically strong hearted souls)
Participants: Girl and Guy (blame the absence of wide angle webcams!)
Duration: It depends (Let the jargons fly around!)
Gist of the seal-the-deal talk:
Minute #1 - #30 - Girl and guy set up Skype account
Minute #31 - #45 - Girl and guy add each other as Skype contact
Minute #46 - #55 - They stare at each other (ofcourse, they are no saints)
Minute #55 - #60 - Same conversation as in Rendezvous #1!

Five minutes later, both parties scream with joy, (at their respective houses) "Ah! They said 'Yes'!"

Rendezvous #4:

Both parties scream with joy, (at their respective houses) "Ah! They said 'Yes'!" and the girl and guy meet a month later! (Rendezvous of families, hours of seal-the-deal talk between girl and guy over phone do not get covered as per definition of "Rendezvous" above!)


Thursday, July 21, 2011

When marriages are made in Bhoologam... - "Ah! They said 'Yes'!"

Marriages? - That's only a reminder to myself that am getting married, and have loads of work to do and need to complete the post soon enough and get it up on the blog and not sit and stare at the monitor waiting for a comment to pop in!

Bhoologam (earth) is where we are, and marriages and more importantly weddings, are designed, made and executed very much here and not in any Devalogam (heaven)!

Coming to today's topic, "Ah! They said 'Yes'!" - Probably the line that goes around across both families for the next couple of days, admist parents, uncles, aunts, grandpas, grandmas, kids, pets and to-be-borns too in both the families! But even before they could say 'Yes', a lot goes into the screenplay!

Arranged marriages are super complicated than my most dreaded chapter in Medevial Indian History! You have every permutation to be liked, approved and accepted! Boy's family likes girl's family, girl's family likes boy's family, boy's family likes girl, girl's family like boy, girl likes boy's family, boy likes girl's family and finally after one big loop, boy likes girl and girl likes boy! No wonder the whole world celebrates when the three letters Y, E, S are heard at once! At that very instant, all prayers are answered and more prayers are offered. The search action ends but a whole deal of actions begin!

As any event coordinator would say, the bride is the one who confidently says "Let the planning begin!" and so did I!

Somethings and some Nothings!!! – Part X

Recap - Part I Part II Part III Part IV Part V Part VI Part VII Part VIII Part IX

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Manjari was out of the hall. I am not sure if the others had noticed any of this. Half the crowd was dancing and half the crowd was already on the ninth cloud. The last words Manjari had said kept me still. “Am doing this for both of us. It’s for the best that we don’t marry for an obligation. I deserve a response from someone else and I am going to wait for it, no matter how long it takes. Apology is too small a word that I want to suffocate you with. I am leaving you with no choice. But am glad am going to give myself a chance again. Take care.” She said she was going to wait for a response! I owe one big time to someone else.

I rushed again, this time to the other end of the hall where “she” had parked her car and stepped down and stood wondering why she was here. She has not moved on. She’s been waiting for a response and I had not known she was waiting all along!

She was there, mingling in the crowd. Smiling, but totally fake. I know her smile. I know her laugh. I know her. I know now, that I know her! Like old times I patted her on the back from behind and she did turn...

“Ask me the question again!” She broke down at that!

“Ask me the question again!” She was completely in tears, and never had I seen this bold lady cry.

“If am right, the last time you asked, if you were part of my plan. You were my plan. I just was insane and out of my minds to have not realised that” She would still not stop.

“All my life, I would say a hundred “Yes” from morning till night, day in and day out. Would that make up a little?” A small smile came across from beneath those tears.

“So, you have an answer now!” is all that she said and held me tight. I knew she had and I definitely had forgotten the six years we had lost. We were back.

Just when I realised we owed the crowd an explanation, she asked “Can we change the party board to read Shreya & Gautham, I am only asking for half of it to change right? And this time, before even she could finish the question I was out with my response “Absolutely!”

Somethings and some Nothings!!! – Part IX

Recap - Part I Part II Part III Part IV Part V Part VI Part VII Part VIII

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I rushed into the house to check my Inbox. The “Hiiiiiii” is all that I wanted to check now. Earlier this day, I would have wanted to reply with an affirmative immediately. I did not mind being a fool to think that marrying a stranger would eventually mean I have moved on. But now, I did not want to hurry into anything. I let it stay while I thought of the day again. It was an intuition then and now, and I stood by it.

“He hasn’t moved on!” I just shrieked? I did. He so hasn’t and is going to make life difficult for Manjari as well? Do I step in? Do I try and help him sort out things? Do I help? Do I need to? I had no clue, till my hands ran over the text messages in my mobile and saw a text from him; “Got five minutes today? I owe you a response...” He should not be responding now. He should not be saying what I wanted to hear. He should not be saying what I did not want to hear as well.

I settled down on the sofa and thought of what I had told him last. I had told him I would be there for him, even if from a distance. He needs to know I am doing fine before he starts his new life. He needs to know or atleast believe that I have moved on. Have I? That’s for me to think. But I need to be there for him at the best party of his life. I cannot gather myself up to make it to the wedding, but a party, with a larger known crowd, I should really be able to manage.

I made sure I looked my best. I cannot believe I dressed up big time for an occasion I would otherwise not have considered changing from office clothes. I wanted to show that I am a different person now. I wanted to reassure him and myself that I am doing fine.

I knew the party hall upside down. I knew he would be inside the main hall thirty minutes into the party. It’s always safe to go late and sneak out early. The plan was clear. I just had to mark my presence and sport a smile and be back soon to get myself to my favourite sleep state wherein I don’t have to think.

I did drive late, I drove through the side entrance only shocked to see him wait there and still surprised to see him pace away when I got down. He sure hasn’t moved on and he definitely has the right answer this time. Question is, do I ask again?