Cybernag completes 10 years this month and I thought it would be apt to celebrate it with an L&M post, don’t you agree?
I had written this post a couple of years ago for The Little Red Box on the occasion of Valentine’s Day. This is a ‘hatke’ post, for I normally only highlight the quirks–liberally laced with masala–in my chronicles of the L&M. Since he has been a great sport all these years, not only chuckling at my recounting of his many idiosyncrasies, even going to the extent of reminding me of incidents to write about, I decided to dedicate this ‘Awww’ post to him. Read on!
Though I had married a tall, dark and handsome guy (which apparently was (is?) the formula endorsed by M&B novels to be the most romantic and desirable specimen of the species), the L&M was nothing if not unromantic. We never went moonlight walking or did any of the 1000 other things couples were supposed to do in the name of romance.
Not that I was concerned much. Perhaps I was as unromantic he was or perhaps it was not high on my list of priorities in the relationship. For the first couple of years, I used to ask him if he remembered our wedding day (forget about the day we met/went out for the first date/our engagement date etc.), before I gave up, for it was a task even for me to remember them! Special days in our lives went unmarked by expensive gifts or flowers or even the ubiquitous Archies card that was all the rage in those days. In fact, many were the times when he was either touring or busy with day-long meetings. Despite all that, there were plenty of ‘awww’ moments though we never knew that expression till I joined SM some years ago.
Of the many moments which could give a run for all the cards, flowers and chocolates of the world, I’ll share but two.
One of them concerns a bhutta 😊……
I was pregnant with my first child and had this insatiable craving for warm, aromatic bhutta, roasted on a charcoal fire by the roadside and smeared with a tangy masala with a lemon wedge. Those days we got the real desi bhutta, not the cloyingly sweet American corn we get today that has killed the original, robust one. But I am digressing.
So, I would waddle to the market every evening to get several things done in one trip – shop for vegetables, complete my walk and get myself a delicious cob of corn, fresh off the fire! All jokes about me being in danger of delivering bhutta instead of a baby didn’t faze me in the least. I simply couldn’t have enough of them!
One evening the bell rang just as I was getting ready to leave for my bhutta walk. When I opened the door, there he stood, my L&M, proudly holding out a bhutta, carefully wrapped in its husk, smelling divine and setting me drooling. He usually came home rather late from work to avoid the peak hour rush, but that day had decided to surprise me not just by coming early but bringing his offering of love!
I bet no flower would have smelt as sweet and no chocolate tasted as delicious. My squeal of delight must have been reward enough for him to make up for the crowded commute he had had to suffer. Since that day, he has bought me many bhuttas and other things besides, but that one remains etched in my mind and heart.
And I don’t think it was Valentine’s Day.
The second one happened in a sick room.
My first child was about a year-and-half and very sick with a stomach bug. I was exhausted sitting up with him, cleaning his poop and puke as his little body heaved out whatever little I tried to feed him. The L&M offered to take care of him for the night and urged me to catch up on some sleep and rest. He was himself bushed but he insisted, so I reluctantly left after instructing him on the medicines to be given and how to hold the child if he began throwing up. I showed him to save the bedsheets by covering them with towels or newspaper. He nodded somberly.
Later in the night I woke up and went to look up on the father-son duo. And what do I see? A shirtless L&M cradling the child who was sleeping peacefully, while wiping his own sleepy eyes with a wet kerchief to keep from closing. The shirt was bundled and thrown in one corner – obviously soiled.
He looked up instinctively and gave a tired smile. If one could find romance in a room reeking with puke and a sick child, I did.
And I don’t think it was Valentine’s Day.
For all those who go overboard about ‘Days’ dedicated to love, especially Valentine’s Day, I would like to say that romance is not in candle-lit dinners, chocolates and roses-though they are all very nice gifts. Romance is sometimes found in a warm bhutta and minding a sick child, to spell an exhausted wife.