Does she remember me still? Or does it really matter? I took another long sip of juice on the table. It was 8 in the morning, for me it was early morning. In a wide and long city like mumbai getting to see a face you had seen 10 years back and still recognising it…. was like a pure coincident. And when it come s to long forgotten faces, its nostalgia.
I was sitting with my wife Smriti. While was nicely enjoying her breakfast in the restorant, I was looking over her shoulder at the last table. Yes! it was her. She has put one weight. Else everything is just the same… Wait… That smile is missing.
“Jig!”. Smriti woke me up from deep thoughts. “What r uthinking????” Well nothing…
“What present shall we buy for Suhahisni’s wedding?” Smriti continued her questions and I ignored her as usual.
I remember our first date. We were in college that time. One of the largest college in Dharwad. A small town. I was her senior. On our first date we met in a coffee shop. Today there is a huge mall on that spot. After that first date where we were a bit hesistent even to look into each others eyes, the coffe shop witnessed our blooming love for next 4 years. From drinking juice from each others glasses to playing with figners and even a few hasty kisses……
I was hoping that smriti wont cath emotions in my eyes. and then there was one more hope…..
Will she see me? She was drinking something and she was alone…….. Is she still alone????? I remember, I had told her that she can marry the guy she wants.. as if she required my permission. Those were the days of internet and email so we promised that we will still be friends , that we will mail each other etc etc…… But none of us dared to reopen the wounds.
i had told her that I will tell everything to my after marriage. But never dared to open my mouth before Smriti. I thought it was a closed chapter in my life and continued to live as if it never happened.
But the truth was that I never heard Nusrat fateh ali khan’s gazals again because i use to listen them to remember her.. I never wached harry potter again because last time we ever met was to watch that movie. I avoid the hill behind my house where we happned to meet with and accident… Long time passed I travelled by a Rickshaw but I will never use them because on our first date we travelled in a Rickshaw which played the song “Tum pukaar lo…”
I lived with those memories and I still live. When she stepped in the restorant my eyes just got attracted to her as if i knew that she is gonna come. Even after 10 years My eyes dint fail to recognise her.
How is she? hows her life going? Is her parents still alive? Did she completed her MBA? Did she marry someone?
And most importantly “IS SHE HAPPY EVEN WITHOUT ME?”
“Jig Arent you happy??” Smriti’s question shocked me, As if she was reading my thoughts.. did she read my thoughts?? Waht was the context? I was all confuse. I often ignore whatever she talks, just the way i use to do with her as well. But then I use to observer her face, her ultra white teeth, curly hair and dark black eyes. The way she use to carry herself.
“Smriti , I am happy with my life, I have you, I have such a great job, and now a kid coming. What else do i need in life?” It was not the answer to her question but I was consoling myself. I felt my eyes were wet.
Smriti couldnt control her laughter…. “Jig u r nuts” what did i ask u and what r u saying? I had not yet finished my juice that girl (or lady now??) was removing money from her purse. Dint she see me? How will she react,, should I go near her?
Why re-open the healed wounds? I kept quite while Smriti looked at my dumb face. I am happy that smriti cant read my emotions the way she did. WIth my busy schedule I think I spent more time with her in four years than what I spent with smirti in last 5 years. I still dont remember when I kissed Smriti last but I still remember that I couldnt kiss her on the last meeting just because we dint get a proper place 🙂 I went and sat in my bus to Blore and she left to Goa. In different buses. Her bus was late so she had come to see me till my bus.
I looked at her back as she walked away from me, she was wearing a dark green salwar and open hair. Every second she walked away from me I felt more and more strongly that I am loosing something very important in my life….. She dint turn back that day……Nor did she now. She had paid the bill and walked off the restorant, may be she didnt see me today.
I had told her on our first date that whenever we will walk away from each other at some time we will stop and look back, that shows we dont want to go away. We followed this understanding for a long time, but not for our last date… I guess she dint turn because she had tears in her eyes, and I dint mind because my eyes too were wet.
When she walked off the restorant now, suddenly just before the junction she turned back, looked straight into my eyes….
gave a smile and zoooooooooooooooom…. she disappeared over the turn. Just one smile had reopened my wounds, blood started flowing off my heart and I too left the table …. without thinking anything. Smriti looked puzzled. I heard her saying “Ok baba dont get angry if u dont want to buy a diamond necklace for suhasini we will just give her a plain Golden necklace, after all she is my sister…”
Zindagi mein hamare agar Gum itne hotee
To dilbhi yaa rab kayee diye hote..