Friday, 30 December 2011

Mirage of Eternity (Part-6)

Three years and six months earlier…
  “So he is gonna meet me?” asked Mr. Sengupta. (Gauri’s Father)
  “Yes” replied Gauri.
  “You mean he is gonna come here?”
   “Yes DAD” she said in a normal assuring tone which was troubling Mr. Sengupta.
   I boarded off Gauri from her return journey to home and as a payback of “Not-Saying-Sorry” for last six months I had to take her on dinner. Next day however I witnessed Gauri’s happiest moment ever. She had been waiting her convocation for like lifetime. If she had missed this day, then she would have been cursing me for her entire lifetime. Gauri dressed in her formal dress that was a pure starched white salwar-suit was looking as an angel landed on the earth. Though she was not amongst the girls who were being felicitated on the dais, still she was the happiest women in the entire audience. Actually she was the only women I was staring at…
   After the convocation ceremony I promised her that I would be visiting her on Sunday to have a coffee with her father and in reply she said “Bring a helmet along, My Dad my shower lots of love on you that may include tea pot, bowls, plates and other crockery on the tea table”.
  “Well I can guess that, after all it’s Sengupta family’s grand welcome for the son-in-law” I replied boarding her bag in the storage compartment of the Bus.
  With a soft hug she climbed up in the bus and I went near the window where she was sitting. I could see through her eyes how badly she was going to miss me. Same condition was mine.
  When the bus started leaving and I stepped back she said in a soft innocent voice “Do shave before coming” and I gave her a smile of assurance that I be spending my hours before the meeting in a Salon.
  “Girls cannot understand how cool it looks” said Sandeep who was standing by me waiting for another bus with his Laptop writing something in it.

  “You mean to say he will sit in front of me and discuss about you marring him” asked Mr. Sangupta raising his eyes.
  “I…guess so…” Gauri replied smiling.
  “You are such a stupid fool girl. Didn’t you find any Hindu boy, though not a Doctor?” He yelled on her.
  “Nope…” she replied.
  “Then why do you even bother to ask us if you have decided your fate with that ugly, barbarian, uneducated, uncivilized guy?” he yelled even more.
  Gauri was trying hard to remain calm as she wanted to welcome me with a fresh and beautiful face. She stood up from the dining table and started leaving when her father fired his last bomb “When is that bastard going to come I have called one of my close friends family to accompany me?” that was the end.
  She was turning to start a never ending argue which always ended with a slap on her face when the gatekeeper came to rescue.  “There is someone in a white car at the gate can I send them in” he said.
  “They must be Mr. Khurana, send them quick” Mr. Sengupta said hurriedly standing up from the table wiping his hands with napkins.
   “Khurana is coming? Wow that’s perfect” she said raising her hands up in the air.
   Khurana was the family with whom Mr. Sengupta had recently generated close friendship with and were planning for extending this friendship into a relationship.
  “I want you at the door with us welcoming him” ordered Mr. Sengupta to his daughter.

  The entire family was standing at the door as if a minister was coming to visit their house and pass their high priority project. All of them with smiling faces looking at the white Honda accord landing in their lawn. The front door flew open and the driver came out of it quickly rushing behind to open the rare door.
  I saw all of their jaws open when they saw my first look coming out of the shining white accord. I had counseled almost all of my friends about how to dress for the occasion and finally finalized the black suit with a white shirt, a black rayban goggle and a decent hair style. I came out of the car as I was the super-star Khan coming out for the premier of KKHH and took out the goggle giving a decent smile facing towards the family.
  The entire family was staring at me in awe while Gauri was like she had seen the most wonderful teddy bear in the world.
  I moved forward towards Mr.Sengupta and forwarded my hand in professional manner saying “hello sir, I am Aquib sheikh”
  “Ohh…Hello…Come in” was all he could say and we all went inside the house.
  “So what does your father do Mr.Sheikh?” Mr.Sengupta directly jumped to the point.
  “We have a family business of perfumes. SHAHI ITTAR must have heard about it” I replied.
  “Ya we use the same during our Puja..” Mrs.Sengupta jumped into the discussion with a  huge smile on her face. She was impressed.
  “And you don’t have interest in the family business, right?” Mr.Sengupta asked.
  “No…I keep a watch on the daily activities whenever I am here. But Infosys also has some projects that cannot work without me so…” I replied drinking a sip of coffee in royal style.
  “How much are you paid at Infosys?”
  “It’s fifty thousand a month round figure including all the expenses” I replied.
  “It’s really very good beta. You must have brought your parents with you” said Mr. Sengupta patting my back.
  “Well…” I paused looking towards Gauri. They must have got the answer.
  Her eyes were still investigating me for genuineness or I had faked someone’s appearance. Like those of SRK’s.
  The meeting went on smoothly and at the end while leaving the Khurana platoon arrived.
  “Who was the guy? Must be a very high profile one” said one of the Khurana’s looking at my car.
  Mr.Sengupta kept his hands on Gauri’s sholders and said “Yes he is. Sometimes donkeys also make good decisions”. Hearing those words Gauri blushed like the typical Indian bride and went inside running in full speed.

   Well as all other inter community marriages, My marriage was also one of the special and was looked upon as a milestone in the inter communal friendship. The marriage took place twice first in rocking Hindu tradition and later in simple Muslim tradition. In both the marriages our parents played a very important role making us understand the rituals that are to be performed. Well best part of this twice marriage system was that I saw Gauri twice in a month as newlywed bride.
  The marriage was very lucky for me and I got an unexpected promotion in my job. I had been posted to Ahmadabad where company had newly established its new office and wanted to settle down in the market as soon as possible. The company gave us a quarter which was in a Hindu populated colony. We shifted ourselves to the new house and the society. After settling and designing our new house when I got out I found the things strange. Very strange… 
(To be continued...)

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