Squeaky-clean skin paired with Kohl lined eyes, modest lipstick and a blue designer bindi added beauty to the navy blue saree I wore. The vintage sterling gold bangle adorned the wrist with elegance and class. ‘He has never seen me in a saree’. I thought.
Along with my parents, I was going to my would-be BH’s cousin’s marriage. That was the first time I was seeing him after our engagement date was fixed. He was very busy that day. He had neither replied to my messages nor answered my calls.
Appa was driving the car. I was lost in my own world. How would he compliment me? What might be his reaction? My thoughts spun around.
When we reached the place, butterflies swarmed my stomach. My eyes were looking for him. (actually for his reaction) After rounds of formal introduction to the family, I saw the most handsome man in pure white silk kurta and dhoti standing at near a room door to a bunch of guys. ‘Ahh! There he is!’ I walked with poise to an aunty who sat few feet away from him. (needless to say that it was to get his attention) I kept a watch on him. He was casually looking around as he was talking, he saw me and he spoke. He stopped abruptly. His head whirled around to confirm what he saw.
I smiled. He did not.
He was walking towards me. My heart was racing. He walked past me! My heart lost the race.
He greeted my parents. Heart-broken, I sat in a chair nearby. His cousins were all excited to befriend me. They took me along with them to the ‘happening spot’ of the hall, where all the ritual ceremonies took place.
‘He did not even greet me. How can I live with such a person all my life?’ I thought. I was feeling unappreciated, unloved and empty.
Girls were cracking jokes. I put on a fake smile on my face.
He stood in opposite me with his gang, separated from me by the mantapa. I felt I was being watched. I looked up, he was staring at me. I looked straight into his eyes, trying to project boldness. But when I saw the genuine love and frank admiration in his eyes, my defenses broke down and I smiled. (Don’t know why I melt)
He did not smile back!!!
‘That’s it. I am not staying in this place anymore. I am going back’ I thought. But, his cousins did not leave me. I felt helpless anger and was frustrated by his indifference. My eyes were heavy without tears.
I was again lost in my world oblivious to what is happening around. When there were reverberating sounds of rhythmic musical instruments I got back into my senses. People were showering akshate (yellow colored rice) on the newly married couple. I felt a strong male hand meshing my fingers with his. I looked back. It was him. My heart went quiet. I could not hear anything. His hand was lot bigger. Mine was childlike.
‘He is stone faced. Absolutely no expression’ I was still angry (litttttttle )
The marriage ceremony got over. We had a sumptuous lunch. We were leaving. My parents were walking ahead of me. I followed them. He had not spoken a word to me! Huh.
In a fraction of a second, he sneaked from “wonder where”, and planted a kiss on my right cheek! (Check out his cheek to do it in public) My eyes were wide open in wonder. I stood transfixed. He walked past me again. I was just seeing him.
Amma bellowed at me from the car. He opened the door for me, and whispered in my ears. ’Bewitching lady! You are absolutely edible’
I smiled and settled into a comfortable, knowing silence.