Once.

It was a winter afternoon, to the best of what memory tells me. Could've been winter or monsoon though. Or one of those days when it was just cloudy and the canopy of pine trees didn't let you see the sky. And it didn't matter if it was evening or afternoon still, the sun set at 4 pm.

Had been trying to get a cab on the way back from solitary lunch. You know how hard it is to get cab in that city. Almost impossible to find one that's going where you want to go. Almost as difficult as finding love. And then it began to hail. Yeah, you won't believe. Hail. Sheets of frozen rain hit everything on the road, all shops had their shutters down. There was no place to hide under. It was relentless. How perfectly I had forgotten my umbrella.

I almost pleaded a cabbie to take me back. He charged me thrice. Or so it sounded, I didn't have the time to calculate exactly how many times he was charging me over the usual. I got in and rolled up the glasses. My sweatshirt wouldn't suffice. Like I had gotten into that habit of stretching their sleeves to cover my palms. From the cold. I did just that, breathed in air, breathed out mist. And counted on the silence. That couldn't be broken. That had encapsulated me ever-since, I had begun craving for love. Dogmatically.

I had been hiding in my bag a neatly packed slice of cake. Chocolate fantasy. That I had coaxed myself to believe wouldn't twist and turn and spoil itself as the cab made numerous rides uphill and downhill. When I reached, the hail had stopped. It was cold still, I borrowed the umbrella from the gatekeeper and quietly walked till the stairs. There I must have paused for sometime, let myself be further disillusioned before finally tip toeing up.

I wanted to be quiet, like a sleeping child. Didn't want to be heard, didn't want to be a nuisance, or an intrusion. I knocked their door. I say their- they had begun living together past few months. Though people outside constantly talked of how much more they had been fighting after the moving in thing. Ironically, I believed in both, their firm love and the rumors that made rounds. Probably because it never mattered what I believed or felt or thought.

Put the cake on his table, I owed him one because I had lost some silly bet. Or something. And turned back to make a quick exit.

But turned back again and smiled, grinned. Seeing them together that way, huddled against each other under a blanket staring out the window, at the chaos outside having been settled. I felt peace. Love, once. I don't remember if I felt envy. Somehow, I can't remember walking out that door anymore.

From that moment till now, a lot had happened to me, with me. I haven't done much except write some 700 odd posts on this blog. Oddly enough, now..I don't feel the need to be in love anymore.

5 comments:

mansi kashyap said...

I read this some 20 times. Over and over. It is weird but true..how we all share a same story...somewhere...only to know that the end is same too..maybe!
Not sure what this stage is...and what it do to you...but I guess it is much better than what it used to be. The point of saturation.
Hope to reach there...someday...oneday!

wildflower said...

20! Now I am indebted to you for that, and yeah saturation is not sweet. I hope you never get to know it.

Krish said...

I get that feeling a lot these days, when I watch working couples returning home on bikes...see a lot of them in Hyd. But, saturation isn't my thing really, especially when I m still unsure if it is envy or nostalgia.

prateek mathur said...

Its a beautiful feeling to see 2 people in love. And oddly enough, that feeling is short lived and is taken over by envy. Doesn't matter if you are lonely or with someone, you are mostly comparing yourself with other couples, invariably!
The complexities of the human mind!

wildflower said...

@Krish
Envy or nostalgia. Very hard to choose which.

@prateek
:-) Well, what can we do!