Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Parihaasamo.. en mel paridhaabam illayo?

When she talked to him, she was sure. She was sure that this was the only way it could be. For his life and hers. A child out of wedlock was unacceptable. Unimaginable, he had said. It would ruin both their lives.
But the first free minute her mind found, a different spool of thought unwound itself. She tried to think of ways she could "solve the problem".

Maybe mom will understand. Probably not. Maybe brother? He would understand. But what could he do? Its not money I need. Not support. I don't even know what is stopping me. Some invisible knot ties me to his future. His college. His life. It was a not a sacrifice, but a sensible decision. But of what good is a sensible decision if it takes away all that makes sense in my life? There have been achievements before. Plenty. But this was different. This feeling of wholeness. Of finding an anchor... this warm heaviness.

She put lay on the bed and put her cellphone on her belly. As if on cue, it started vibrating.

Does that tickle you, my love?

She sighed and answered it.

Where are you?

Home.

You're at home? Its 4 in the afternoon.

I got done with work early.

Okay.

Thirty seconds of silence.

Whats for dinner?

I don't know. Anything.

You want to go out?

No. I'll figure something out.

Okay. I'll be back at 6.

See you then.

Hmm... anything you want to tell me?

Nothing in specific.

Rest up. I'll find a cab for Saturday morning. The train is too much of trouble. I'll be home at six and we'll cook together. Or even better, I'll cook.

Okay. I'll see you then.

You seem to be in a hurry to hang up. What is wrong?

Nothing about this is right. That is what is wrong.

He sighed audibly. It irritated her. She tried not to show it.

Okay, I won't go there. I'm going to get the laundry done. Do you want me to do yours?

Please rest. I'll take care of that stuff.

I'm not dying of cancer. I'll be fine doing the laundry I think. Again, do you want me to do yours?

Its okay. I have another week to go.

Okay.

Bye. Take care.

I will. Bye.

She flipped the phone close. She usually hated hanging up. She always waited till she heard the click on the other end. A habit from those late night conversations with her ex. When they would argue about who would hang up first... child play. Maybe he noticed. He probably wouldn't have. He never paid attention to minor details. He said they didn't matter.

They mattered.

It mattered that Saturday was Mother's day.
It would matter that there would be people standing there with posters to tell her what a big mistake she was making. Protesting the "cruelty".
It would matter that she would in the coming years, remember exactly what she wore, how that old man who handed her the pamphlet looked, how that taxi guy sneered at them.
It would matter, that she would wake up 4 hours later feeling empty. Empty and exhausted. And would find him sitting in the living room talking to his fiancee about their wedding plans.

(Scene III from the Departure of Happiness)


Color: Gray
Song: Mokshamu galada (Madras Quartet)

4 comments:

The Regular Joe said...

made a good read.

Deepu Vasudevan said...

It could have been written a zillion times better. I may rewrite it. The scene remains the same essentially, but the dialogues aren't to my satisfaction.

Vaidehi said...

hey
i didnt know u write so well !!!

vaidehi

Deepu Vasudevan said...

Thanks Vai :)