Saturday, December 31, 2011

How I Met My Husband......."Chance favors the prepared mind." Part- 6

Continuing my story: Be careful what you ask for, for you might really get it

I always have the habit of imagining things and day dreaming, building castles in the air.  It was and continues to be my favorite pastime.  In my dream world,  I am  everything that I am not in reality – mature, sophisticated, educated, cultured, witty, friendly and a warm person who gets along with everybody.  Well I am sure we all indulge in this kind of wishful dreaming. Which is good in a way up to a certain point.  Unbelievable as it might seem, that’s what happened in my life. I literally got what I had asked for..... but wait, before you jump with joy and relief, ( that at last the story is over) life has lots of twists and turns before it lets such things happen.

Not long after that day, my father did get a phone call from this man who introduced himself as a business man from Bombay.  He happened to be in Madras on some official work,  and while he was visiting one of his friends, he had come across my horoscope by chance. You  see this friend also had a son for whom my horosope was sent, but because his son got an offer of a job from the U.S. he had deferred the idea of marriage for the present.   So the 4 or 5 horoscopes that his parents has accumulated were promptly handed over to this business man from Bombay for his son who was of the same age.
 Of all the horoscopes thus in the hands of this businessman, only mine matched with his son’s.  So here he was asking my father whether he could come and meet us, ( just the way I had imagined) since he was returning to Bombay the next day. Now isn’t it surprising that such a thing should happen out of the blue ?  
Well wait till you hear the rest of the story and the other surprises which were in store for us.

The boy was an IIT graduate with a doctorate from the great and venerable United States of America. My father was over the moon and just could not believe his great good fortune.  He was absolutely thrilled, literally jumping with joy, and said  yes,  he  was most welcome to meet us anytime.  And  so this businessman along with the wife of his younger brother landed up in our place for initiating the formalities.  It transpired that out that his brother’s wife was of the family who were neighbours of my mother’s family many years ago in Triplicane in Madras.  Now Triplicane is the quintessential  Brahmin quarter in Madras (as is Mylapore) and it was therefore not surprising either that  the lady’s elder sisters were my mother’s friends from long ago.   As they say it is a small world indeed, which was especially true of the Iyengar Brahmin community.  My parents were happy that the people were known and  it would make things  so much easier to take forward.  The businessman was happy that things had turned out as they had. He said his son and his wife were planning to visit Madras in a week’s time for the very same purpose of viewing a few prospective brides and I would be included in the list.
 The day finally arrived when  the boy along with his parents was coming to see me.  I was in a daze, as though in a dream world,  since contrary to all previous experiences, things were going without a hitch as per my imagination in this case.  But at the back of my mind,  there was a constant fear that there could always be a slip between the cup and the lip.

The party arrived at the appointed time on a Friday, and were climbing the stairs leading up to our home on the first floor of the Besant Nagar colony where we lived.  I was looking out from the window,  to catch the first glimpse of the boy as he got off the car. But alas! the person I saw accompanying the business man, looked just like his father, only a little taller than him : you see that business man was only about 5ft tall.  All my hopes came crashing down, for despite his qualifications and other accomplishments,  I just could not imagine myself married to someone who was shorter than me.  Things are different today when even short men like Aamir Khan have so many women falling for them :  what with body building, physical fitness  and what not, etc., all men who are fit irrespective of their height look good and attractive.  But not so about thirty years ago. 

Coming back to my story,  I was in a a terrible fix now : why do such things always happen to me only?  

There was no rational answer to that question.  I was called in and introduced to everybody and  would you believe  that the person I thought was the boy was introduced to me as his uncle. Well there seemed to be no end to the miracles!  The boy, whom I had missed catching from my earlier spying,  actually was  nice, looked very decent , cultured, well-mannered and was nerdishly quiet and he was not short. There was something nice about him, about the way he smiled which endeared him to me.  I was commanded by my father (not by the Boy’s party) to play a tune on the guitar to display my various skills.  I was fed up singing songs and playing the guitar to every Tom, Dick and Harry. In fact I used to get pretty upset with my dad for making me do that every time even while the concerned people never really cared for such things. My father like most parents had to always show off his children’s talents.

  Now I was in a fix, for I had one favorite song,  which I was always ready to sing, whenever the request came from either the boy's party or from my father. Soon I was to notice that whenever I sang that song, the boy's party literally ran away, giving some vague reasons for not wanting to pursue the matter further. (the song: Na Tum Janu na Hum Jaane, a famous Hindi song picturized on Dev Anand and Wahida Rehaman). Don't get me wrong, I was not a bad singer, it was just superstition on my part, thinking that by singing that song, somehow the alliance would not click. ( For the bell in my heart never rang for any of those boys). 
I went in and came back with my guitar, and just decided to play some song and be done with the whole thing, I did not play the song that made people run away, for I liked this boy, and had no intention of losing him. However, I was very nervous, as I played another song in the guitar, for I had no idea whether it would do the magic, I had to take the risk... the song I played was the very famous,  romantic song of Guru Dutt, 'Chaudivin ka Chand'. This song is sung by a man to his lady love, but it was okay, for I was only playing it on the guitar.
After the so called music session, I left the room, only to be followed by my father. I told him, that I liked the boy. Relieved to hear no objections from me, he said, that he would inform them and leave it to them to move forward. (Probably he also  must have felt that, if we told them that we liked the boy, it might psychologically influence the boy also to decide favorably, now as you know one had to try all the tricks of the trade if one really wanted something very badly).
  As was the usual practice, the boy's side said they would let us know and left.
Anyway, within an hour,  we got a call from the boy's parents saying they also liked the girl and would like to take the matter further. They said that the boy wanted to have a word with the girl. Now knowing me very well, my father had strictly told me to keep my mouth shut, and only answer to the point. Anyway, I had no need to worry for the boy also seemed to be the "to the point case",  for he just asked me whether I was also satisfied with them, thereby leaving no room for anything more.
 My father as you all know, didn't want to let this fish from his net, decided it was better to have the engagement while they were there, so as to officially seal the deal, without further delay. It was decided that  the engagement would take place on the 24th of August a Sunday, itself for they were to leave  the same night by the night train to Bombay.
Did you'll notice one more thing, if things had not gone wrong with that Army guy, I would have been engaged to him two days earlier, instead,  just notice how things changed, I was to be engaged to another man just two days later.You get to see such things happen only in movies, or get to read them in some mushy novels, but it happened to me, it was something as they say 'stranger than fiction'.
The engagement went off very well without any hitch, to think my parents had to run around and make all the arrangements at such short notice.
Well, while the refreshments were being served, my mother got a chance to casually ask the boy's aunt, whether the boy was into drinking, smoking, and eating non-veg, bla bla bla..... and the aunt  threw a bomb, in fact threw many mini bombs .... saying......

This picture was taken in Portugal by a Photo Journalist, for she liked my bright colored dress very much and wanted to use it in some magazine showcasing Indian dress.
I know, I should have ended it here, but it has become too lengthy, so please bear with me I promise, I will finish my story in the next blog, for there is lots more to happen before that classic slip between the cup and the lip.
Thank you.

to be continued....

Thursday, December 15, 2011

My never ending fascination for beautiful cloud formation and sunsets


Every evening as I look out from our balcony, I find myself  witnessing different kinds of sunsets and cloud formations, each one of them unique and very beautiful.... I am always ready with my camera to shoot as many pictures as possible before the sun finally sets.
The Sun is a big show off, always teasing me, pretending to set, and always peeping from behind some awesome cloud, which is no less a show off..... both the Sun and the Clouds vying for attention, trying to out do each other, but never succeeding for both look equally beautiful and amazing....
Here are some pictures, you can see for yourself the drama they create each day:

Finally they are ready to say good bye...
I am grateful to the Universe for creating such amazing scenes for  us to witness everyday, day after day.
Do you ever look at nature and admire its beauty, what is your favorite, is it the Sun, moon, rivers, birds, the clouds  or the rain what is it, that keeps you hooked?
Please share  with me.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Its the month of Cakes & Candles It's December.. Wishing you Merry Christmas....

Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful. - Norman Vincent Peale

Even before Christmas has said Hello, it's saying 'Buy Buy'. - Robert Paul
One of the nice things about Christmas is that you can make people forget the past with a present. - Author Unknown

"I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December
A magical thing
And sweet to remember.

'We are nearer to Spring
Than we were in September,'
I heard a bird sing
In the dark of December."
- Oliver Herford, I Heard a Bird Sing

"God gave us our memories so that we might have roses in December."
- J. M. Barrie

"The best Christmas of all is the presence of a happy family all wrapped up with each other"

"Christmas candle is a lovely thing;It makes no noise at all,But softly gives itself away;
While quite unselfish, it grows small"

The sun is gone but I have light: Kurt Gobain


                                         May the closeness of friends, the comfort of home,
                                                and the unity of our nation,
                                                       renew your spirits this holiday season.