(Continuation of "Getting Married Part-V")
“So, when are you getting married?” asks Bhavana.
“Do I have to?” I reply.
I look at the expression of disbelief and shock in her eyes.
“How can you talk like this?” she asks, “Is it a case of love-failure?”
Now it was my turn to be shocked.
“Does it have to be a love-failure, when a person decides not to marry?” I retort back.
“Well, that’s what happens in most of the cases.”
“I don’t agree with you.”
“Then tell me the reason why you don’t want to get married,” she starts pulling my leg.
Instead of answering her, I ask, “Why do I need to give you an explanation?”
Before we could argue any further, I get a call on my extension and Bhavana gets back to her cubicle.
“Hello?” says a very familiar voice.
Why do I not show my anger on her? She ditched me, her childhood mate, for her 6-months old fiancé; yet I don’t scream and shout at her. Why?
“Are you busy sweetheart?” she asks with a hesitation in her voice.
I am reminded of the time when she wanted to borrow my skirt for a fancy-dress competition, when we were in our primary school. There was the same hesitation, the same quivering in her voice. We were such close pals that everyone in our class would wonder why their friends were not that understanding. All my anger melts away and all that I remember is the shy smile of a sweet girl of five.
“I am in the office, Radhika,” I reply, “How are you?”
“I… I am fine,” she says and then words tumble out in a flood, “Could you… Could you do me a favour?”
“Of course dear!”
“There is absolutely no balance in my cell phone. I was wondering if you could go out and buy a re-charge card for me and sms me the 10-digit code number.”
“Where are you?”
“I’m in a bus traveling from my aunt’s place to home.”
“Is it that urgent?”
“Hmm… I just checked my balance; it’s just ten rupees. It’s will take me an hour to reach home. Meanwhile I thought I could talk with Siddhu…”
The mere mention of her fiancé makes me feel frustrated. I want to end the call as soon as possible.
“Why don’t you ask him to get a recharge card for you?” I ask
“No… No… How can I do that?”
“He’s after all, your fiancé.”
“I can’t do that,” she exclaims, “What will he think of me?”
“Oh come on! You are going to spend the rest of your life with him.”
“You will not understand!” she shouted and cut the connection.
I wonder what I will not understand. Radhika stopped finding time to be with me since so many days and now when I thought she had called to talk with me, all I get to hear is: Another help required! Am I a departmental store or a personal assistant to get things done for anyone? I also have feelings. Just because I don’t call her, it does not mean that I don’t have any feelings for her. It hurts not to be with her, not to share my thoughts with her, not to talk with her… But all that she is bothered about is her Siddhu!
He is going to be her husband; yet she is uncomfortable asking him for a small help. Is she mad? Why does she need to keep pretences with her closed one? She did not bat an eyelid before she called me to ask. How mean of her! Why do people take others for granted! Why do they not realize that even others need love and affection? They feel terrible when someone uses them and then forgets all about them…
A voice cuts into my thoughts.
“Back to your dreamland?” asks Bhavana giggling, “It’s lunchtime.”
“Give me a minute,” I cry, “I need to rush the restroom!”
While I hurry, she calls me back saying, “I am still eagerly waiting to know why you don’t want to marry.”
(To be continued in "Getting Married Part-VII")