“the 3 flowers”

Part I.

“Do you think dad’s lonely? It has been a long time since mum passed away” Candice said

The 3 daughters were seated at the roundtable, discussing their most prized possession – their dad. The three daughters loved their dad a lot and would do anything to see him happy.

Patrick (or Uncle Patu-as the friendly neighbours called him) was a cheerful man and not many things bothered him (tho’ at times it was evident that he missed Rita [his wife] a lot especially when he went for various functions around the village) but with every passing day, it was a delight to see how well, almost single-handedly brought up his three daughters, after his wife passed away to cancer 3 years after their third daughter, Blossom was born. Rita was only 39 then.

He had rightly named his humble abode “the 3 flowers each flower represented by 1 daughter, Candice (the eldest), Cheryl and the youngest Blossom. Candy, Cherry & Blossy (lovingly referred by the villagers) were seen together accompanying their dad for his evening strolls around the village. On other days just the two of them, while Candice would be busy in the kitchen baking or cooking up some mouth-watering dishes for the family – Jaggery pancakes and rum cakes – being her 2 specialties. While Cherry gorged upon her sister’s rum cake, Blossy was content on nibbling on the lone pancake. Candice would cut a thin slice of cake along with 3 pancakes for her dad. Though it wasn’t as tasty as the ones her mom used to make, her dad ate them with the same relish.

“I’ve seen it in his eyes too… whenever we talk about mum. It’s all because of Blossy..she keeps asking all these questions” Cheryl replied

“I don’t mean to hurt daddy but  I never got to spend enough time with mom, like you and Candy did …and there is so much I want to know about mom” 

“I didn’t mean to blame you blossy” giving her little sister a tight hug

“It’s okay sissie” she smiled

Come what may, whatever the situation, the 3 daughters would always stand by each other and for the one thing that joined them together, they had made up their mind that it was now up to them to bring back the smile on their dad’s face. 

“But how?” asked Blossy very innocently. After a lot of thinking, she said;

“I can give my teddy to daddy, my teddy always keeps me happy, it will keep daddy happy too” she beamed at her idea considering that she always slept with her teddy at night and now to part with it – but for daddy, she was willing to do it.

There is a limited no of ideas that a 9-year-old can come up with. Candy & Cherry had to come up with a better idea.. they knew Blossy’s teddy bear idea, though very cute, wouldn’t work.

“The Photo albums” shouted Cherry

…to be continued

The morning after..

He was finally married. wedding-rings1

The night had passed, it wasn’t as eventful as he had imagined it would be, considering they were both tired after the late end to the wedding reception.

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However, the morning was here. He woke up with a smile, his now-wife Rekha was still sleeping next to him. Not sure whether to wake her up or not, he walked towards the kitchen, obviously very hungry (everybody knows the wedded couple eats the least at their wedding), he expected his wife to prepare a modest breakfast for him, but seeing her sleeping he realized, she must have been really tired herself.

He looked around the kitchen (probably the first time ever he entered one with the intention of making something) after a quick analysis of the resources available, he decided on scrambled eggs, a few slices of toast and a maggi preparation of  the single maggi packet lying in the cupboard (to be shared obviously) The effort wasn’t bad considering it was his first time, the toast came out a little burnt (he preferred to refer to them as crispy) the eggs could have been scrambled better. The one thing that really came out good was the maggi preparation, he knew that very well. He put it all on a flowery quarter plate on a tray and took it to his wife.

He had never made breakfast for himself before, let alone make and serve another person on the bed.. (unsure what endearing word to use to wake her up.. he settled on her name) he woke her up gently,  when she opened her eyes & saw that he had made breakfast for her, she shuffled around quickly and got off the bed. She had remembered the words she told her mom only a week before

“how romantic would it be if my husband made breakfast for me in bed” she smiled to herself at the memory and said

“You made breakfast? wow!” breaking out into a sheepish grin

She was still getting used to the fact that she was now married.. to her benefit, it was ONLY their first morning together and she had woken up late – Shit!
While she joined him in what was her first breakfast in bed with him, she bit into the crispy toast.. he looked at her seeking her approval on his efforts, she looked at him ..and they both laughed.

It might have not been the perfect start, it certainly was a crispy one.. as they both laughed their hearts out ..somebody still needed to finish the toast. 

Clause No 9

9th January 2003

Sitting in the living room were Lucy, Peter and their parents…and no, it wasn’t any kind of family re-union or anything but the parents of both Lucy & Peter were called to find a solution to a recent spate of arguments which the fairly recently married couple were having, it had escalated so much that Lucy has decided she had enough with Peter. Meanwhile Peter did not quite understand why Lucy was making a mountain out of a mole hill, it was something both of them could work out on their own, they didn’t have to involve their parents but Lucy would not listen and finally here they were, all seated around the living room.

Lucy’s mum sat by the window, she needed fresh air blowing into her nostrils, her husband John by the stereo..he was born to listen to music, he could do nothing without the sound of music ringing in his ears, even if it was low volume. Peter’s parents Leo & Nancy took to the comfortable sofa’s while Lucy and Peter sat on two chairs at two extremes of the living room which thankfully wasn’t that big.

Lucy began to speak “I cannot live with the man any longer” The parents looked all at each other and then at Peter. He remained quiet, not sure if he should be even having this conversation in front of his parents and in-laws. Everyone remained quite not sure what to say.

She continued “So what do you all have to say?”

Peter smiled, the parents all smiled at each other and Lucy was not sure what to make of the reaction.

Finally her mom spoke “Wasn’t this the same man you told me about one day and said ‘Mama, I cannot live without Peter…I love him to the moon and back and I want to marry him”

Lucy remained quiet “but that was before”

“and what happened now?” her father butted in

“He doesn’t love me anymore, he doesn’t give me any time…like he used to and he’s always busy”

“that’s not true baby” Peter spoke

“don’t baby me in front of our parents…u know what you’re doing, rather not doing”

“what?”

“not giving me time… I can’t live with a man who doesn’t give me time”

“if you want to go..u can but not before you fulfill our marriage clause 9”

“Oh no! no! no! There’s no way you’re getting me to stay with that”

“We both decided and made that together…remember?”

“Marriage Clause 9” the parents looked at each other not sure whether they’d heard of something like that before

Leo was interested to know more, “What’s that clause about Peter?”

Very excitedly they both said together “it means that we have to return back 9 kisses everyday for the next 9 months that we’ve exchanged since the day we met and fell in love on the 9th of September 1999″

clause

“So I guess you have your solution….” Peter’s mom said. She found it really cute.

Looking at Peter “We’ll have to wait for our parents to leave to begin” and they hug each other 🙂

taking it slow..

A big ThankYou to all..for making it finally happen. Chacha, chachi, Google aunty, fanta uncle, chechi, chetan, lizzard, pepsi, ramu kaka..Ramu Kaka (or R.K as he liked to be called for short) you could say, he was instrumental in seeing this day become a reality.

The most eligible bachelor or at least according to R.K, the friendly domestic help that made his presence felt for 3 hours every morning, 2 of those hours which he dedicated to making my mother understand that her son (me) was now ready for the next big step in his life and that he knew some beautiful bitiya’s in the neighborhood  who could be seriously considered possible matches. My mother, who for some reason listened to him patiently every single day, now started making her list. R.K doubled up as a marriage broker, tho’ a very average one at that.

Reshma was one name that popped up regularly in their conversations. Reshma was Mrs Banerjee’s  (popularly known as Google Aunty) daughter. Reshma was by far the prettiest bitiya in the neighborhood, it did make things easier that she and I were really good friends. It wouldn’t really hurt getting married to somebody you share a good friendship with. She was a bong, transferred to Mumbai due to her dad’s bank transfer. Mrs Banerjee, her mom, was quite a personality. How she got stuck with the name Google Aunty, we’ll leave that story for another day. We had very interesting neighbors, we had bengali’s, punjabi’s, keralites, nepalis, all thrown into one happy and friendly neighborhood, living in perfect harmony in the suburbs of Mumbai.

After a few meetings, exchange of smiles, sweets and discussions, the date was fixed, the cards were printed in 2-3 weeks, all the neighbors got their Rohan weds Reshma wedding invitations. While the wedding turned out to be a lavish affair where different Indian cuisines were served, it was the bollywood mixed with bhangra music the dj played that got everyone excited. It was one wedding night you wouldn’t want to miss.

Reshma didn’t look as subdued as she was at the ritual ceremony, when she was in the room with now her husband Ro, she liked the shorter version, it saved her those extra few seconds 😉 She jumped on Rohan while he was resting on the bed after a long night. For Reshma however, the night had only just begun. It was officially their honeymoon period. Rohan had a sore back after the continuous dancing and Reshma might have done a little damage  to it by jumping on him.

Not the ideal start you’d think ..but Rohan knew he was in for a rough ride.