8a.m: Woke up that day with an ecstatic smile and a grateful heart. It’s our anniversary. We survived four years of marriage and a pandemic. Together. Under one roof. Wished husband for the 100th time.
The formalities of wishing and ceremonial cake cutting (in our case, cupcakes. There’s an explanation) were already done with at midnight. The zeal fades down with growing years, fortunately, not the love. The cupcakes were a last-minute addition too. Need memories to reminisce and also showcase(the things one does for socials).
We don’t buy cakes anymore, for the simple reason that we never see the end of it. It’s a waste to buy a whole cake for two people. So two years ago, we decided to do away with it.
Coming back to the day.
9a.m: Managed to get up from the bed. Cuddled with Rumi for a bit. An urge to check my phone started building up. I am not a “pick your phone the first thing in the morning” kind of person. At least, not before finishing my morning routine. So I refrained but today was special.
9:30a.m: Made it (quite excruciatingly) without touching my phone. Finally, switched on the Wi-Fi and awaited eagerly. Expecting a gazillion messages to flood my inbox.
Two minutes passed and zero messages in the inbox. Thinking maybe the wi-fi is slow. Refreshed the app.
One notification. I open it hurriedly. It’s the routine “Good morning” message from my father. sigh.
10a.m: Fuming a bit now. Questioning the extent and severity of all our relationships. Contemplating and then consoling myself saying “People have lives. No one walks around with a calendar marked ‘Their(our) Anniversary’, must wish.”
Even I don’t do that. Unless it’s a reminder from my Google photos or my Socials. Let’s be practical.
10.30a.m: Had breakfast. Sat with husband deciding the goings-on of the day. Rumi will be sent to daycare. House will be cleaned. Dinner will be prepared. Lunch will be outside.
Lunch date, after ages. But first, Coffee.
Still fuming about the forgetfulness of people. And, venting it out with husband, who is in equal measures of shock. Shocked about his family, leave his friends, leave my friends.
Just an hour ago, his mother called and had a long chat with him but forgetfulness has gripped her too.
She calls again, an hour later, now remembering and giving an explanation for forgetting. Wished us.
Finally, some progress.
11a.m: Given up hope. I had no expectations from my family but his family too. How is that possible?
Phone rings. Sister-in-law remarks “I completely forgot.” I sneered. You know what, it’s a disease. Everyone’s got it today. We laugh it off and talk for a while. After hanging up, I see a few messages.
Wishes from his family. Still no signs from my family.
In my mind, that’s normal. I could picture mum rushing around the house, completing one chore after the other. No room in her mind to remember silly dates like April 19th. When her daughter got married. Only THE MOST important day of her life. I presume she has more important things to do. And I let her be. Till the evening, when I remind her of it.
Noon: Husband is back after dropping Rumi. He expresses his agitation about the lack of wishes. We discuss for a while and then digress to more fruitful topics like “where to go for lunch?”
Ah, a dismaying discussion. To sit and decide where to eat is like trekking in arduous terrains. One would think that after 4 years of marriage, we would have figured out an easy way to settle this discussion. But then, one would be wrong.
Four years of marriage only teaches you to “agree to disagree” and settle for a viable option. It does not teach you to find the easier way out. Just to be clear, there is never an easy way out.
So we narrow down on a place. Decide to start by 1p.m( never happens).
1.30p.m: Start out for lunch. We don’t need a map this time since the place is nearby and we know the route.
Minutes later, we miss the side lane to enter the restaurant and drive past it. It’s a long way to take a U-turn and come back, so we skip it and move forward. In search of other places to eat. Now I google it.
2:30p.m: Finally, found a good Asian/Continental place. Settled for it. The food was delicious. We began with Japanese for starters and ended with an Indian main course. Typical.
Choosing the easier way out, without arguments. wink wink. The dessert was continental. A hard caramelized, creamy, sugary Crème brûlée with a touch of tangy, to mellow down the sugar. Somewhat like a marriage. Isn’t it?
4p.m: We reached back home. Exhausted from the heavy lunch which naturally demands a siesta. We complied and slept for an hour. I slept. He took a catnap and went to pick up Rumi.
6p.m: I check my phone. The frustration builds up. I call mum. No answer. Call back again. She picks up, with pretention I carry on our usual talks. Finally, I ask “you forgot my anniversary” Caught by surprise and in shock, she remains silent. Silence for a minute.
Hello mum, Did you hear me? Yes, comes her reply, with a string of sorry’s. Meanwhile, dad sitting beside her, slyly texts me and the Husband. Happy Anniversary. Very subtle Dad.
Mum continues with her awkward rambling about the day and how she was busy with work. And, even though she did remember it in the morning. She forgot to wish me. Busy day, I sneer again.
6:30p.m: I brew some tea. The weather demanded it. We sit down and begin our Chai pe Charcha (Discussion over tea). Laughing and jeering about the goings-on of the day. The forgetfulness, the awkwardness, the ramblings, and the silences.
Still awaiting wishes from some people and wondering. Should I have posted it in the socials?