Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Once upon a love story

I knew them both since I was a kid. That was then long ago.
Chetan and Chechi. Which later became Chechi and Chetan as priorities changed.

I knew them from a time I was convinced no boy and girl could be friends and just at that, to a time when I went about fighting for the cause of just-friends.

They were friends. Too.

But there was more. I noticed it immediately and remarked ever so casually to my mother. But Amma is very naïve when it comes to such things- for which I have shamelessly exploited her many a times. Still do.

She shussed me. So I learnt to keep quiet about it.

And then when I was older and I caught up with them, she told me about it. He was long gone. From Pondicherry. But he remained, a distant memory in my mind and a love worth waiting for, in hers.

She would often talk about remember-whens and do-you-knows. I would always listen.

Then those anecdotes stopped. He’d moved on and away, I guessed.

To outdo him, she plunged into a fit of trying to love and be loved. Each time I saw her, she would tell me of a new love of hers. And I wouldn’t ask her about him. Chetan. She was lovable. If only she didn’t try so hard.

Her heart was broken many a times, but she wondered about the ease with which she rebounded. But I knew, it was because it had never healed.

Many years and many loves later, he returned. To a country he had left. Or tried to.

That phone call was one she had waited for, without even realizing it. Feigning a nonchalance that didn’t suit her, she laughed, she pretended, she agreed to meet him.

And this is what she didn’t tell me. On how she would have tried to dress up for him. On how she would have cleaned her tiny room. On how she would have trimmed her hair, shaved her leg and dabbed herself in perfume. How she would have tried to leave a book casually on the table pretending to have been reading it instead of waiting by the window or even sitting simply in anticipation. How she would have stocked her fridge with something she thought he would have liked but would never even eat. On how she would have spent every minute the two hours agreed upon, in innumerable ways and not liked any of them…

And this is what she told me. While we sat at one of the benches at the beach looking at ships that weren’t there. He didn’t come.

22 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

first to comment....
will add more when I read! :D

4:40 AM  
Blogger Hyde said...

Seeing the way you end your stories, an theory formed in my mind. Nothing new actually, just that I have another data point to consider. :-)

Your mobile number is still the same?

5:09 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Sharat: Its the Bhel puri, I bet!

Hyde: The stories end themselves, after which they become stories actually. I LOST my cell phone along with my baggage! Send me yours...

5:24 AM  
Blogger yesbob said...

*shiver*

8:10 AM  
Blogger JanaBanana said...

melancholy. an emotion that not enough of us truly focus on. You did. And you did so, exquisitely.

welcome back.

3:34 PM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Yesbob: Cold isn't it...

Jana: You should write.

8:52 PM  
Blogger Sikhar said...

Poornima; you have magic in your fingers. Keep writing...

11:15 PM  
Blogger Dhanya said...

donno who that anonymous is...but i had the same feeling. forst to comment that:::::::::::::::
I was smiling when i saw two posts heree!!! it has been a long time since i came to the webworld. got bored of it, was tired, had work...all big time excuses being the reason. hey i pulled down my blog again...another crazy moment. will tell u next time when i upload it again! :) oh...forgot, dhanya here...now lemme read. for me, ur blogs are like feasts! ;)

12:16 AM  
Blogger Dhanya said...

huhmph!!! i read it! why didn't he come? Huhmph!!! the ice cream at the end was sour, but tasty!

12:19 AM  
Blogger Hyde said...

Checking personal mail during office hours is no longer taboo in your office? :-)

12:53 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Sikhar: I will...

Dhanya: You do keep doing this on and off! Lol! Why he didn't come... I guess only he would know.

Hyde: I really don't know, why is it that I bring out the Hyde in you! Am sure others see a Jekyll and Hyde is purely for my benefit! No holding hands please!

1:22 AM  
Blogger Hyde said...

Oh, you bring out the best in me! :-))

Holding hands? Did I say anything wrong?

1:46 AM  
Anonymous anon from frost said...

as usual... beautiful! you know what..u should write a book.. a collection of short stories. you should!

3:31 AM  
Blogger Arun said...

But why didn't he come? These men I tell you. Never trust them. That's why I prefer women :-)

Beautiful, as always, as usual, as last time.

5:35 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Hyde: I shudder to think what the worst will be! Holding hands isn't wrong as long as we aren't talking about my hands!

Anon from frost: Well... maybe. Then again, maybe not.

Arun: Lol! Men... you can't live with them, you can't live without them!

Thank you for all the kind words.

5:46 AM  
Blogger Hyde said...

An experience on NYE in Bombay taught me one thing.

Keep your hands with you.

9:14 PM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Hyde: Lol, it need not be on just NYE, it could be anyday, anytime. Your hands go with you!

2:00 AM  
Blogger Hyde said...

Well yeah, it applies for any day. But that day it almost went with some one else.

2:58 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

nice one Pvij...reminded me of a long-ago good-bye call from the airport, that gave me the happiest news...alas! a couple of months too late...shall tell u sometime!

5:59 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Hyde: At least then you wouldn't want mine!

Sharat: Lots of stories to be told huh?!

6:36 AM  
Blogger sheela said...

poornima ,
I should say iam fortunate to read your blog about this i strongly believe in this concept and you know i can understand how horrible her situation was while waiting for him .YOu have put it very nice thanks

1:39 AM  
Blogger Poornima said...

Sheela: Thank you for all those kind words.

3:17 AM  

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