The Finish Line

“If I had some idea of a finish line, don’t you think I would have crossed it years ago?”

oi

This quote basically sums up my idea about a finish line. It is an elusive thing, in the far horizon, and I don’t know what exactly I need to do to reach there. And it gets changed in every stage of life.

When I was in school, the finish line meant to pass my 12th standard with high grades, so that I can get in a good college. College meant freedom from school uniforms, mingling with boys, pocket money, less restrictions, more night time etc etc. But after reaching that, I felt that the finish line has sled further away. Now I wanted a job. Financial independence. The sole target of the last year of college was getting a job offer….as if that would mean the end of the race.

DSCN2285

After getting the job, me and my partner thought of moving in together. It was a tough job, to get a flat and to convince the parents and all, but we did that also. Little did we know that the race has just begun. Over the years, we got married, then got separated, and now again I am back on my racing track. This time the finish line seems to be beyond a crooked jagged dangerous path, one on which I must bleed and burn before reaching my destination. Hopefully this will be my finish line; on which I will find peace and happiness and that spiritual fulfillment that I yearn for. Until then, race on.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

Advertisements

Stranger than fiction

“Ssshhhhh….silence!” The judge shouted.

It was a courtroom, but not at all like the ones they show in  movies. It was dirty, dingy, full of old furnitures and endless piles of yellowed documents. The mood in the room was gloomy and…

“Deadly boring! Don’t you think?” Riya asked, with a huge yawn.

“It’s a court! What did you expect, DJ and vodka shots??” Deb shook his head in amusement.

“Just look at the pot-belly of the Judge! He’s hilarious…” They both broke into a giggle.

A lawyer seated in the front row came and whispered in their ears,” Don’t talk and laugh so much. The Judge will notice and postpone your date.”

Well now that was something serious. Riya and Deb were silent. For extra precaution, Riya put her handbag between them, to create some distance. This again brought another round of silent giggling.

“Next are you.” The lawyer called. The couple stood up. The Judge was bored and uninterested. He had only one question to ask,” Whatever is written here, is written out of your free will or not?” They nodded simultaneously. That was it, approved by the honorable Judge and the legal system of India.

After coming out of the claustrophobic room, Riya’s mood was visibly better. But she was not satisfied. “No questions?? The Judge didn’t ask anything!! Is it so common? It was all over in 10 minutes!”

Deb started laughing. “It matters to nobody, sweetheart. Now, what do you say, Chinese? Tung Fong?”

Oh yeah. The mutual divorce went really well.

The starting

To think of it, the starting was rather unceremonious. I was going to a different city for some official work. In the airport I met RD. He was also going on the same assignment, to the same city.

Our project started. It was different, difficult at times, taxing, quite engaging. I began to enjoy it slowly. The bad timings, the strict discipline, the unknown language, the local food, the cozy place I was staying in – I absorbed it all like a sponge. And after a week maybe, I stopped missing home. I stopped feeling awkward in a bunch of people all speaking different languages. I felt this is my place.

The dates started casually. Two like minds in an unknown city will obviously flock together, be it for movies or food or weekends. And then the conversation. That look in his eyes. The hunger coursing through. The slow forgetting of where I came from, what I was, what will people say. It occurred naturally. It was as if a drama was unfolding in front of me, and I was just a spectator who had no control over the events. On the beautiful backdrop of mother nature, the love flourished (I can use this word so casually because I have crossed some time since then. I was in denial mostly).

Slowly the outside world faded out. There was only these two living beings in the world. Each day we would do a countdown to see how much time we have left. It was a bubble in which we were living. Both were acutely aware of what was going to happen; it just made us more desperate.

One month passed like a moment….and the time came.

How I see it

Was there any reason for the split? Truthfully, no. We were still very much comfortable with each other, loved spending time, were movie buffs, and in every way a compatible couple. It was my wish to say the truth. He just supported me in every step. And it was whimsical, expensive, bad. Now when I look back and see what I have done, I feel ashamed. If anybody treated me inthat way, I would never ever see that person’s face again. I abused and exploited the relationship in the worst way possible. Still….it goes on.

Is this love? This longing, guilty feeling, this tug, what is it called? I never felt I was a emotional person. But now…I have to admit, I’ve never seen a more whimsical or weird being. What I did, why, I don’t know. And sadly, the two people who were connected to me both suffered genuinely. However much apologies I make, it will fall short.

Now, it comes again, the thing I hate the most. A decision that will again change my life. And it is the proverbial last straw. What I make of it will decide how the rest of my life will go. While I cherish the certainty and comfort and safety, I also long for the wild mystery and call of the unknown. I know this time whichever way I chose, I have to burn the bridges and go. No second (erm…third…fourth) chance.

Of Vows and Promises

Marriage as a relationship never made any sense to me. I mean, you want to spend your life with some person; but you need a legal and social stamp. Why? If two adult consenting people want to stay together, why do the Government and the court and the neighbours and the distant relatives should have a say in that? And the problems that come with it. Change your surname, change your home and go live in a strange new house, change your dress habits, your food habits, and it goes on.

Before I got married, I was very nervous. I was not at all sure if it’s the right thing I’m doing. And today when I look back, I know it was in a hurry. As a close friend of mine said,” You should have married the same person but 5 years later.” The changes that happened was too much to process. As such there were no issues; but some small things, some resentments, started to grow. I won’t say that these happened because of somebody else. It was all in my mind, I could not accept it when the shopkeeper at my parar Mudir dokan started to call me ‘Boudi’; people expected I will wear Sindur and Loha; whenever I planned some trip with friends, they will ask me,”Bor ke chhere jabi?” Even at my office, my PL (a MCP!!) decided that I can’t go to onsite, because I’m a married woman now.

Hence started the process of my disliking what I am. In my mind, this marriage thing was bigger than the relationship I actually shared with my partner. I was eager to break free of it; to do away with this ‘married’ tag that did not define me. I never wore sindur or loha, was more comfortable wearing westerns, drank a lot, took risks a lot, was a bohemian by heart. The irony is that my partner was fully supportive of me. He always said that the marriage is for outside world only; what we were at heart is still the same. It was not a typical married relationship that we shared. Still, I felt that little thorn every time somebody addressed me as Mrs. ABC.

Now I am in a much clearer state. I know that a sign on a paper has no value; what my neighbours or my relatives say is insignificant; whether I am married or not doesn’t matter if we love each other. These are all man-made bonds to ensure the society goes on. And it’s ridiculous, when a Judge sitting on a high chair, who knows nothing about you or your rellationship, has the power to declare whether you are staying together or not.