Ok, this one’s a fairly old story of mine. But this is pretty close to my heart. And its V-Day tomorrow. Couldn’t think of anything better to start off the blog with. Those who haven’t read this earlier, hope you enjoy it. Those of you who already have read it, well, hope you enjoy reading it again. Its the season for romance, baby. 😉
One Love, Too Many
Hey there. How are you doing? My name is Vignesh. Vignesh Narayanan. Friends call me Vicky. Male, 28-ish, and married for almost a year now. I manage a small mobile showroom just off the Vadapalani main road. Well, one of the many that dad owns. I drive an old Esteem and have a truck-load of spare time on my hands. Yeah, I’m exactly the spoilt rich kid types, that you’ve seen on TV. But then, trust me, it ain’t that bad. I understand that you might be interested in listening to a Romantic Story. Well, I hope you can keep a secret, because I am going to tell you one. I love Janaki, my beautiful wife, and my best-est friend, ever. No, that’s not the secret I wanted to tell you. Janaki isn’t the only woman I was/am/would be in love with. This is my, strange, dysfunctional, alleged ‘Love’ story. 😀
I am not exactly sure, if my story qualifies to be a ‘Love’ Story in its true sense. But, I’ll be honest with you. I actually did, (and perhaps still do) love all the women I am going to tell you about. It has never gotten serious, and I think even Janu knows about this. She has never raised an objection, and there has never been a quarrel. She is so sweet that sometimes she just laughs these off. Perhaps it is trust. Perhaps this is what they call true love. What could I do, if Cupid actually uses me for target practice. I just can’t help falling in love.
My mom keeps telling me, that when I was born, some good looking nurse in that small hospital in Kumbakonam, planted a kiss on my cheeks, looked at me and told me that I was one handsome guy, who was sure to have a whole lot of girl friends when I grew up. I must have taken her words very seriously. Oh yeah, I was born a Casanova. I apparently had more girl friends in my LKG than guys, and I, I’m told was absolutely possessive about each and every one of them.
Off late, all this started that day, when I first saw Elizabeth, talking to her friend in that building, near Mount Road. Just one look at her, and I was in love. She looked like an Angel on earth. Her eyes twinkled with mischief; lips curved the right way to show a beautiful smile, and that little lock of hair that kept falling on her face, perhaps as much in love with her as I was. My words can absolutely do no justice to her divine beauty. And, as it happens a lot with me, she did not notice me at all. But I was undeterred, and as most kids of my age did, I kept following her. And it was during this time, that Janu came into my life.
Janaki Gopalan. The unbelievably talented, and insanely beautiful, Ms.Janaki Gopalan. “Gosh, you are beautiful” those were the first words I spoke to my ‘would be’ wife, when we were introduced by a common friend, some years ago. She blushed initially (rather uncharacteristically, as the friend told me later), gathered herself, and hit back at me immediately with a smile – “I wish I could say the same about you, Mr…”
Holy cow. I was in Love. Err… Once again.
Janu was an artist, and an absolute no-nonsense woman, with no time for useless talk, and with a very bright head, firm on her shoulders. And me? Well… I, to put it mildly, was exactly the opposite. I loved books. Oh yes. Especially the big, hard bound ones. They made excellent pillows. However, Janu, sadly, didn’t share my enthusiasm. To her, books were her ‘best friends’ (Oh yeah, that’s what she called them), someone she can go to find solace and peace, when she needed. You know, she could quote Shakespeare as effortlessly as the Bard himself, whereas I used to ask doubts even in the comics I read. Her idea of a movie was to understand the shot picturisation, admire the acting of the lead actors, the direction and all the other artistic elements of the movie, whereas, my idea of a movie was, to sit and drool at the actress/actress’ female friends/their friends, etc.
For some weird reason in this world, atoms and molecules are so precisely arranged, and Physics so strangely schemed, that somehow, opposites always seem to attract. And trust me, I must have been the most happiest person, that Physics is always right. Forget about me, the only opposite I need to get attracted to, is for it to be of the opposite gender. (Thank God, atleast for that) But what was even more surprising, was Janaki seemed to like me too. It wasn’t sudden in any way, and me being me, it did require a considerable effort to woo Janu. I remember it like yesterday, I had parked my car at some spot near Tnagar, and jumped out to walk Janu home, in true filmy ishtyle. We had only met a couple of times then, but always with some of those pesky friends around. This was my ‘once-in-a-long-time’ chance to walk her home that wet evening, and perhaps attempt to indulge in some sweet nothings, just me and Janu. It was beautiful, the faint drizzle on our faces, she, loving the drops of rain kissing her cheeks and her beautiful eyes almost jumping out with joy, and me, just looking at her and loving her love the rain. It was totally beautiful. Though, it would have been perfect, had my car been not towed away for being parked in the no parking zone. 😀
I was head-over-heels in love with Janu, but that did not stop me from being me. I came across the absolutely hot headed and short tempered Priya. Priya, oh Priya. Her anger was very well known. Things defied gravity when she got angry, and you had to hope against hope when you met a fuming Priya, that you don’t come in the way of the flying projectiles. But then she had a very sensitive side to her, that not most people realized and would have been a wonderful companion if only you could understand what really ticked her off.
And then there was Kayal, the gorgeously traditional Ms.Kayal Vizhi. She was truly, a refreshing ‘sight’ for sore eyes. An oasis of the classic ‘paavadai dhavani’, among the sea of jeans and churidaars. She was everything a guy looked for in his lady love. A pretty face, a shy smile, and a voice so sweet, that she almost sang every time she talked. I would have fallen for her, when a radical antonym of Kayal, grabbed my attention.
And then, enter Divya, who could give Kareena Kapoor and her size zero, a run for their money. I fell hook, line and sinker for Divya, when once while talking to a friend of hers, I guess she just totally forgot what she was saying, when she saw me looking at her. Ok, I agree, I am not exactly ‘Imraan Khan’ material, to have warranted such a speechless reaction, from an absolutely stunning lady like her. But then they do say Love is blind after all, don’t they.
But, in spite of all these distractions, I just could not stop thinking about Janaki. A few months after our first meeting we had become pretty good friends. I began planning my days with her in mind. Running your own business had certain perks, that my friends in the IT industry never seemed to enjoy. I had a lot of time, after business hours to pursue my ‘other activities’. By this time, Janaki had totally understood my interest in women, and she never seemed to mind or turned jealous, which brought with it, both, a sense of relief and a whole tinge of concern if she really liked me that much. 🙂 Our mobile bills followed the inflation trend, and as time went on, our parents, slowly but surely, kind of smelt what was cooking. I was beginning to contemplate the option of spending my life with just one girl. And obviously, I wanted that girl to be Janaki. And then one warm September evening, when I was walking Janaki home, I popped the question all of a sudden. I never intended to be so abrupt and so sudden, but I guess it just came out. I asked Janaki if she would marry me.
Now if this was the movies, there could have been 2 distinct possibilities. 1) the heroine would have nodded her head in coy affirmation, and hugged the hero and broken into an impromptu song and dance routine in the Swiss Alps. Or, 2) the heroine would have looked at the hero and 2a) Slapped him, and insulted him before the entire public, or 2b) Pitied at the hero and said “I never thought of you like that, let’s just be friends.” But then, it wasn’t the movies anyway. She just stood there for a few seconds, and then burst out laughing like crazy, with me standing there looking at Janu, wondering if she indeed was mentally unstable as I had thought of earlier, because she has already shown signs of liking me. Then Janu, got in control of herself as we reached her apartments, looked at my serious face and said, “Oh my God. You are serious?” She went in, and I felt absolutely stupid at myself. I swore that if Janu ever talked to me after that incident, I would never ever pull off something like that. I vowed, never to talk about what had happened that day.
She was absolutely normal the next day, and I decided to leave it at that. A few weeks passed, with me ogling at Freeda in the meantime. Then one day, when I was driving Janu home, she asked me in a very matter-of-fact manner – “Were you serious that day?”
“Which day?” I quizzed her, although being perfectly aware of what she was talking about.
“Do you really want to marry me?” She asked, and then I finally realized, that there was a God. There was finally traffic from the other side as well.
I will save you the embarrassment by not revealing the mushy emotional dialogues that we exchanged that day, and by just letting you know that Janu and I got married a few months later, sans major opposition from our parents. And 11 months down the line, we are loving every bit of the wedlock that we got us into. But if you are tempted to believe that marriage has refined Yours Truly, or has tamed the Casanova within, then I can’t tell you how wrong you are. I still am the same old Vicky. There is still the occasional Shalini, the very rare Sita, and the tomboy Kalyani who grace my life, week after week.
Yet, there was something common in all these beautiful ladies that I’d known. Something so enchanting, and so mesmerizing, that when I look at them, I forgot myself. It was those beautiful blue eyes. Beautiful, blue, eyes, that made me fall in love all over again. Now you can’t hold that against me now, can you? I wasn’t a roadside Romeo. I was in fact, a connoisseur of all things beautiful. And this, ladies and gentlemen, is my love story.
Well then, I’ll see you around. I have a date again today. A date that I’ve been on, week after week for so many months, sitting in the front row of some auditorium and drooling like crazy watching a play. My blue eyed sweetheart Janaki is on stage at Alliance Francaise tonight. Apparently she is playing a hilarious, shy, Brahmin, wife, travelling to America for the first time. You should see her; she just floors the audience with her sense of comedy. But frankly, all she needed to do was stand there and smile, and I would have given her a standing ovation until my hands turned purple and broke off.
Janu’s character in this play is called Bharghavi. 🙂 And as I had been doing it all along, in the line of Elizabeth, Priya, Kayal, Divya, Freeda, Shalini, Sita and Kalyani, the characters that Janu has played on stage, I’m in love with Bharghavi now… 😉
*** THE END ***
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