Saturday, December 31, 2011


She was mighty. She was feisty. She was the epitome of strength. She was gentle. She was fierce. She was the centre of peace. She flowed like an angry woman, like a Kali. But in her every splash, there was power. In her every sound, there was grace.


It was three days of hiking and walking. They were tired. They had shed their many layers but still felt warm in the 5 degree weather. There was something in the air that generated the heat. Some might call it passion. But I, I would call it love. Yes. Love. You know that feeling of togetherness and care. Well, they looked in love to me. Smiling, laughing, talking, joking, so much joy and peace in the others' company. It reminded me that love that pure still existed. They rested in my shade for a while. They were hidden from the world for a while. The path was deserted anyway. They had been walking, hoping to find a bridge to cross the river. They had strayed from the road usually taken. But none of them looked perturbed by it. On the contrary, they marched on determined.
Finally, they reached a place where the river was narrow. Sandra, dressed in a blue jacket and denims, said, "This might be where she is thinnest, ladies." Anne replied, "But I am wearing stockings woman. I need to take it out." Dressed from top to bottom in black, her eyes had an impish glint. She laughed as she said, "Wait, so are both of you!"
Karen said with a smile, "We better go take them out. The place where we rested against the mountains a while ago seems ideal. It was hidden."
They walked back to the isolated spot. They sat down, leaned against the rusty mountain and quickly took out their stockings and socks. They stuffed them in their backpacks and drank a sip of water before moving on.
"I feel like a bull ready to charge," Karen said as she pulled her dark pink sweater on.
By the river bed, they stood and watched her, the mighty Kali Gandaki. Her blue waters shone in the little sunlight. The cold chill around her gave them jitters. Her fierce splashes against the rocks made them stop and stare.
Karen advised, "The rocks will be slimy so watch out. Tread slowly and carefully."

Photo credit: Selene
All three of them took out their shoes, held them in their hands as they stepped in. The icy cold water sent chills up their spines. The tip of their folded jeans got wet by the force of the current. But they inched forward one step at a time. They even seemed to enjoy it after a while. When they were nearly halfway, Sandra slipped and almost fell in. She steadied herself and stopped.
She saw both Karen and Anne had stopped to check on her. They seemed to have shared a joke as they laughed right about then. In that pause, they must have felt the force, power and strength of the Kali being unleashed. But it only gave them the needed determination to walk on.

Soon they had crossed over to the other side. They had waded through icy cold water in high current. They seemed pleased with themselves as they wore their shoes back on. They sat down and looked at the river for a while. The obstacle they just crossed seemed to have not been disturbed by their presence. They walked on stronger, wiser and more together than before.

Their only witnesses were the Kali and me, the mountains. I have seen many locals cross the river each day. But there was something about them. The river seemed to empower them somehow. They looked happy to take on the Kali, they seemed pleased to have the others around while they did it. For once I felt, the Kali had met her match. The day she met the three feisty women.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Dancing to our tunes.

I entered the bar and hunted for her. The loud music made me cringe but I had to go in as I promised her I would meet her here. The place was packed on a lousy Wednesday evening and it smelt more of cigarettes than alcohol. I took a deep breath to calm myself down and continued looking for her. I finally found her sitting on a bar stool deep in conversation with a man. My heart sank. He looked dreamy and charming. Did I have reason to worry? I knew she loved me, cared for me and wanted to be with me. No man would ever be competition for me. I tried to not pay heed to that green eyed monster. Yes my jealous thoughts are cliché. Can you blame me? This feeling makes thinking very difficult.  And why did she have to look so hot anyway. I could imagine I was one of the few that found women in oversized clothes turning on. But the dark grey sweater, skinny jeans and black heels made her look delicious. The sweater even brought out her eyes, or is that expected from someone who is smitten. At that moment she spotted me. “S!! Finally love. I have been waiting. You look hot in that dress hon,” N said as she kissed my cheek. “This is Robert. I met him here. He brought us Martinis,” she added. There was a devilish look in her eyes. She knew her extrovert ways bothered me. But I knew my anxiety just encouraged her. We have been living together for eight months. Why does a man, who we will never meet again, cause me worry and unnecessary heartache? Beats me.
Her coy smile and tug at my hand brought me back to our reality. “S! Your martini must be on its way. We can sit at the back of the pub,” N said. “No love. We will sit wherever you want,” I replied holding her hand a little tighter. My grip made her a bit more comfortable. She waved bye to Robert and we wandered to a private spot. In that moment I realised how different we both are. She loved outdoor gatherings like such and an occasional dance night-out. I preferred avoiding human contact on most days. She ridiculed my ways but never with much seriousness. Such small things we never held on to as we were “in love” or as people would term it in "our honeymoon phase". I was just insecure as she was so obnoxiously attractive and supremely interesting too. I constantly felt the need to know she would stay mine. How very acquisitive of me.
We haven’t told our parents or our friends for that matter. We just have it lipsticked on every mirror in the house we lived in. I have wanted to tell everyone and anyone for a while. But I understand her need for time. Being together, living together worked fine for us. It was not going to go down well with our parents though. And sometimes I didn’t want to care. She did care and I learnt to restrain from ever bringing it up. After forty fights about the same thing, you learn quick.
“Oh S! You are in one of those moods today,” N said bringing my-not-suitable-for-pub thoughts to a halt. I then realised she had been staring at me and stroking my manicured hands with her petite ones. Something that usually made my heart skip beats. But I was buried in thoughts to notice.
“Sorry love,” I said noticing my drink had arrived as well. “I was on another planet. I am all yours now,” I replied giving her a soft kiss. She seemed pleased as she held me there for a few moments. The DJ right about then played “our song”. The song is called our song, we didn’t have a song picked out yet. She looked at me with a cheeky smile knowing I would want to slow dance. My legs were shaking with anticipation. She knew me so well. I stood up and led her to the dance floor. She looked breathtaking. Her eyes shone with love and her smile spoke of a superior connection we shared.
I pulled her close to me. She rested her head on my shoulder and we swayed in complete silence. Not the uncomfortable kind. But, the kind where volumes of conversation is exchanged. We stayed that way for a long time. Songs changed, the pace changed too, but we couldn’t get out of our world.
“S!” she said in a voice that was coated with concern. “Thanks for coming today. We have both been so busy. Our worlds don’t intersect too often on an everyday basis; with you and your confined writing and me with my obsessive consulting. But occasional nights like this make me realise I couldn’t be with anyone else. In all our differences, and we both know there are many, we have built our heaven,” she said. 
Credit: Getty images
I pulled her closer and her deep sigh brought our conversation to an end. We danced our ‘special’ dance to tunes that we had made, in the world we had written for ourselves. We didn’t notice the stares we got that night or any time after. We had found a place we could call our own, far away from the cruel judgments of the world. We danced our time away.

This is part two of a story. Read part one here.

Note to the reader:
I try very hard to not write cliche stories. But this one was one I was tempted to write. :) Hope you enjoyed it. :)