This Friday Rekha read my blog after a long time and as expected wasn`t impressed with the way I had been projecting her to the World. After leaving damaging comments (which I have deleted now) she decided to call me at office.
“I would like to discuss our marriage with you,” Rekha roared into the mouth piece.
“Discuss our marriage? Why? Are you going to divorce me?” I tried to hide my excitement.
“Divorce?” Rekha was surprised by my question. This is the problem with the typical Indian middle class woman…divorce isn`t an option.
“You are just trying to make me happy…right? You don`t really mean divorce?” I was finding it difficult to hide my excitement. In my mind, I had already proposed to one of the pretty interns working in my office….she had accepted….and we had started staying together.
“Rajan, listen…I have realized that our marriage isn`t going anywhere…what time will you be coming home today?”
In our house the rules are simple…when Rekha wants something she gets it – starting from A for Apple to Z for Zits (also known as pimples). So, there I was…at 8 p.m., sitting in front of her.
“Rajan, I don`t like how our married life has been moving forward,” Rekha broke the silence.
“I don`t understand. I have given you a pretty daughter who goes to a good school, you have a credit card whose bill gets paid from my salary at the end of the month, you make three trips a year to visit your parents…what is NOT right?”
“I donno…remember you used to say that our Suzuki Swift was great only in the first year. I get the same feeling about you,” Rekha was looking away…at the ceiling. Perhaps, because it hurt her that she was hurting me. Or perhaps because, she remembered I hadn`t cleaned the ceiling fan in a long time.
“Rekha…we spent 4-5 years together before marriage. So the accusation that I have changed after the first year is wrong. Besides, you have changed me so much after marriage that I am no longer the guy you had fallen in love with.”
I remembered a recent quote I had read, and almost let out a smile. Thank God Rekha was still looking at the shoe rack. The quote was: When a man and a woman marry, they become one. The trouble begins when they decide which one.
Rekha was still looking at the shoe rack. Now I was sure that she was going to bring up my irregular cleaning schedule next.
“Rajan, just because you bring in all the money doesn`t mean you are the boss of the house. I do so much of house work….if only it could be translated into money.”
Now Rekha was looking at the center table. She ran the tip of her index finger across the length of the table and picked up a layer of dust.
I could have right then told her that her best effort at house work wasn`t enough…and pointed to the layer of dust on the center table. But having the Rajans blood in the veins is a big disadvantage…you can`t BUT be a gentleman with a lady.
“Rekha, for starters you don`t let me be the boss. You act like a worker`s union and drown all my suggestions with the threat of a union strike.”
“Why do you consider me an outsider? Talking of drowning, I wish I could drown all my sorrows…but you never go for swimming.” There was a tinge of regret in Rekha`s voice which meant she wasn`t joking.
“Rekha, I joke on my blog and NOT when my married life is at stake,” I said. Long back I had learnt that girls (my wife included) liked it when you were funny, but they can`t live their lives with somebody who doesn`t take anything seriously.
Rekha looked at me….right into my eyes. I returned the stare. We must have looked at each other for close to 60 seconds….but it seemed like ages. Not long back we would stare into each other`s eyes for more than two hours and then rush to the bedroom for private moments. Time does play a cruel joke on lovers…with time familiarity starts breeding contempt and aging doesn`t help either.
Rekha woke me up from my thoughts on the concept of time and its effects on lovers: “And what about all these blog posts you write in my absence? Like the ones titled I am looking for a birthday partner.
“Rekha, if you hadn`t left me alone in Gurgaon and gone visiting your parents …especially on my birthday… why would I go after Priyanka Khattri? Though I have to agree that she was good.”
My evil mind started racing back to my last birthday…when Priyanka and I spent the day together. And I was about to smile the Prem Chopra way, when Rekha let go of her torpedo. She said: “Not taking you along was good because it was half the cost and double the fun.”
Still think of Priyanka Khattri, I retorted: “You always do this to me. Even when you were in Gurgaon, I never knew where you spent your evenings?”
Rekha started looking at the small book shelf we have in the corner of our drawing room, and casually remarked: “You know what…if you had come home in the evenings…you would have found me at home.”
From Rekha`s tone I could gather that she was really upset. The problem with the Rajans is that they can never see a girl in trouble, even if she was now a woman with a two and a half year old daughter in tow.
I ended up blurting: “Rekha, then lets re-live the old days…lets go out and have fun. What do you say?”
“Sure. I will take the baby with me. You just leave the lights on the verandah switched on, just in case I return before you do.”
We Rajans are magnanimous. But when it comes to self respect we have a lot of it. So an insult is an insult…even if it was from the wife. I didn`t respond & left the drawing room.
Rekha was already in bed when I switched off the lights in the study and entered the bedroom. As I had expected, the baby daughter was in middle today (that always happened on ‘fight` days). I was still fuming inside.
In the dark, Rekha asked me: “Is everything shut up?”
The Prem Chopra in me emerged in the dark and I sent out a sarcastic reply: “Yeah Rekha. Everything else is shut.”
There was no response.
I could sense Rekha turning and twisting. I was doing the same. When we had got married, we had set only one rule in our marriage…that a fight had to be solved that very day. And it looked like we were about to break that promise in the fifth year of our marriage.
I had to do something. In the dark, I turned towards her and asked: “Still awake?”
She let out an as-if-you-care “Yes.”
My heart went out to her. Being the good man that I am, I turned towards her again and said: “Rekha, if I had to start all over again…I will still marry you.”
It was at least 30 seconds before I heard a reply. “That`s what you think.”
The room suddenly seemed hot. But before I could say anything nasty, a familiar hand held mine and gave it a gentle squeeze. While I lay looking at the dirty fan, I heard her say: “Hey, I was joking stupid. We aren`t breaking our golden rule today. We will save it for later.”
Other Funny Reads
Funny Post 1: Sleep as much as you want, while you can
Funny Post 2: Drinking with the wolves
Funny Post 3: Rekha and I visit Mocha, Chennai
Funny Post 4: Rekha and I visit Mocha, Chennai
Funny Post 5: When the Rajasthan Govt gifted me a camel
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