She used to live in the room next to me, she was someone I knew like she was part of me. She was a different one, very different actually. She was fat, short and she called herself a potato.
She wanted to be loved and I think that is the reason she dated a couple of guys during her college and school. She didn’t believe in the policy that u can love only once but she did had that one thing I haven’t seen in many, she loved a person like it was the last person she would ever meet. It was painfully beautiful to see her love and indeed cry.
It was all the same every time, she met this guy and fell in love and turned the world round to make him feel special and eventually as time passed she failed and they split. I think she had this huge burden of her past which often didn’t let her new relations blossom. The utter need to be someone’s special can be credited to her family background and her upbringing. She never really got the attention she thought she needed and deserved, I might be wrong but that’s how I saw it.
She often said to me, “Life is like a blank canvas where one day someone will draw a picture and you won’t be able to replace it. It will be like the nail paint stain you often crib about”.
I used to laugh and take no note of it but then I saw it.
It was 6 in the evening I sat with a coffee in peace suddenly my phone rang. I saw her an international number flashing and who knew it would be a beautiful surprise after 2 years, I picked up and said, “Hello”.
“I am marrying him”, yelled a very familiar voice.
“Marrying??? What?? Who?? Who is him?? Say Hi you jack-ass “, I said in absolute surprise.
“Him… the Canada guy you remember and Hi”, she said in a very obvious tone.
I was shocked, surprised, and happy. I wanted to laugh and cry both at the same time. Funny part I couldn’t recall the guy.
“Your family is ready”, I asked a very sadistic question.
“I don’t know if they are happy or not but they are like OK. This is the only question you had.”, She said.
She continued, “We is coming to India next month. “
“We?” I said.
“Yes, me and him”, she said with a confident voice.
“From where”, I asked.
“Canada. I did my MS from there. We haven’t talked in a while I see“, she said.
“Great. Yes, what is he doing? Are you working? Date final?” I said.
“He owns a restaurant. Stop the serious questions, you stupid. Its 27 April and my phones going dead. Will ring you in an hour OK..?” she said.
Before I could say OK the phone was disconnected.
This phone took me back to her story. It was a very weird yet lovely story.
We were four friends, I think we were the most talked about group of gals in our college. We could sit in the library cafe and gossip the entire day. Wearing similar clothes, matching earing and dressing like we are up for shows was I guess a common talent among us.
She was not beautiful yet many a time she was considered the one who could date anybody. We often used to say lady your words hit where it should and due to ample other reasons she was the one with never-ending solutions to all our love life issues.
Rim was one of us who was trying to grab a little attention from this old friend of hers and often she used to give her phone to this love guru to talk and try to use some magic. Unknowing Rim started something which was beautiful.
I used to go to the next room every evening to have a gala session and strangely Rim’s phone was always in her hand and she was texting him on Rim’s behalf.
One day I asked “who is he?”
“I don’t know”, she said. “Rim asked to talk so I talk”, she said in a carefree voice
“So, he has no idea it you and it’s not Rim he is texting too”, I asked
“Nah”, she giggled and said.
“How does he look “, I asked
“Haven’t seen really, he doesn’t have his picture as DP. He has boring name”, she said.
Soon the guy was gone and so was Rim’s phone. Rim used to admire but not so much to invest so much time.
It was rim’s birthday we all planned a surprise. She was asked to take messages from each of her friends and that was the first time she message him being her own self and they did talk for a while but she was with this south Indian guy and he was too far and they stopped talking. The end.
Two years later.
She had a devastating break up, she lost all the charm, not facing the world, not going for meals etc. etc.
And out of the blue.
She messaged him, “hi” one fine day.
No one knew that Hi would be the best Hi of her life.
They fell in love after three months of day in day out texting and sharing every damn detail of their lives. I had never seen her that mad. We all started to follow the Canadian time. Thankfully, it was the final year, the freest year of an engineering student.
He was in Canada and she was here with us yet they managed to talk and talk and talk and love. It took months to take shape but once it took a shape of relationship it became the best I have ever seen.
He left India after his 12 and did some diploma in accounting. He used to work there and still used to find ample time for his lady. I didn’t know him that well but just this was more than enough that he loved her like she was the last he would ever meet. During the first year of their relation only he told his parents and his parents wow..!! Best parents..!! She wasn’t as lucky as he was, her parents were not the type that you could tell you have a boyfriend.
It was more a normal routine affair but its intensity only they knew.
I remember one particular night she called me soon after college ended and said they had an argument, a big one. She was hopeless. I thought it was end cause after college it was her first cry call. He lost his job and was paranoid and she couldn’t stop herself from giving him stupid suggestions and some other things. It was a petty thing we knew but not for them. It became totally intense and for days we saw her crying, fighting with herself, text filled of his talks, crying voice notes and whatnot.
We tried helping them up but it was their call and that was the last time I heard his name. I got busy with life and so did she and we didn’t talk. Assuming they would have broken up I also never enquired from someone else too.
“Pass me the newspaper”, mom said and somehow brought me back to reality.
I had a blank look on my face and passed the newspaper to my mother. It was then I realized she was right he painted her canvas and it was like the nail paint stain which fights like they had that night couldn’t wash away. It’s often a tough a choice to give up or stay but when I think a little patience and time could mend everything. I have a very dichotomous thinking just love is one exception I see in grey, it’s an amalgam of happiness and sadness. Love might be pure, kind and selfless but I believe love is patience.