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“LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT?” I wasn’t convinced, “Come
on. There’s no such thing. Love cannot happen in a moment, dear, it takes time. What happens in first sight is attraction, not love.” “Dia, you are saying this because you haven’t yet met them. They look so cute together, made for each other, you see.” Shauna replied, taking a sip from her coffee mug. We were at out favorite hangout place sipping coffees, yes, it was our second coffee. It was raining heavily outside and we were just killing time drinking coffee at that café. All of a sudden, Shauna started a very important discussion relating to our common friend, Sam. The topic of discussion was Sam’s new love, yes; he found love in every second girl. Oops, sorry, he’s going to kill me, if I say this because it’s wrong. The truth is that he finds love in every girl. That’s what he’s like. Today’s discussion topic was Sam’s new loveLisa. According to Shauna, Sam and Lisa met when Sam was on his way to his job in a train. When he got off the train, he had managed to get not only Lisa’s number but had also fixed a dinner date with her the same night. And now Sam boasted that he has at last found true love in Lisa. “They look cute together because Sam is handsome and this Lisa must be beautiful, Shauna dear, not because they’re in love. Bet tomorrow Sam’s going to come with some new girl. This is his everyday business.” I replied sounding as much practical and logical as people believed me to.
“But this time it’s not so. I have met them. Believe me they are so much in love with each other. Bet we will hear an engagement soon” “You are kidding? If we hear any such announcement, I will give a happening party.” I promised. The reason behind this promise was that deep inside my calculative and practical mind, I knew it isn’t possible. Sam just didn’t look like someone who can accept the commitments of marriage. “Pray this time it’s true. At least we will get a wedding to attend, what say?” She smiled. “So you mean to say that Sam should get married so that we can eat wedding cake. This is ridiculous.” I smiled, “True friend, right?” “Let’s cut it off.” Shauna replied and we left the café. I was standing at the taxi-stand to get a cab. My car was out of order and Shauna’s home was in exact opposite direction of my home. So I denied her offer for a lift. But it seemed that luck was not in favoring me that day as I couldn’t spot even a single cab. I am quite allergic to rain and catch cold the moment I get soaked in rain. Now my practicality was creating problems on health fronts. “Good God! Now what?” I thought. It was almost over half an hour and I couldn’t find a cab. I found it foolish to deny Shauna’s offer of the lift. I should have known it would be difficult to find a cab in such rain and at such a time. Now I was getting really tensed. “Help me” I looked at the sky.
God seemed to hear my plea for help. Suddenly a car stopped near me. Before I could understand who it was, Sam came out of the car. Sam was looking as handsome as he ever did. I was reminded of the comment I had made to Shauna about his being handsome some minutes earlier. “Hey what are you doing here?” He asked me. “Trying to locate a cab” I replied, “But of course, as you can see, in vain.” “So Miss Practical, want a lift?” Sam asked. “MISS PRACTICAL” was the little title he had given me for my attitude of considering the practical and logical implications of every action, the most emotional topic- LOVE included. “Depends.” “On what?” “Well if you are free, then may be.” I answered. “Free as in?” Sam was a bit confused, but never mind, he always remained confused. “Do you have any other appointments? I mean the Lisa thing?” I tried to explain him. According to me, if he had promised to meet her today then he should go and meet her as she was his true love as per him. I didn’t want my friend to loose his love because of me. Too much of practicality, isn’t it???? “Are you like out of your mind? Lisa can wait. I cannot leave you here all soaked in rain, trying to find a cab in vain.” Sam said, “Come I’ll drop you.”
I didn’t find it surprising. Sam was always considerate and concerned about others. He had a caring nature. He was perfect in every sense except he was too emotional and confused also. “So became a poet?” I asked him getting inside the car. “I didn’t get you.” Sam replied, switching the engine on. “All soaked in rain, trying to find a cab in vain. Poetry, isn’t it?” Sam didn’t say anything and continued driving. I knew the reason behind this. He must have been reminded of Lisa when I said poetry. He always said true love is like poetry- flowing from the heart knowing no bounds. He must be missing her presence, I thought. “So how’s life going?” I tried to cheer him up. “Good.” He abbreviated “As planned?” I wanted to keep the conversation going on because I couldn’t bear the thought that I was the reason of him not being together with Lisa at such a romantic hour. “Yeah.” He again answered very shortly. Short of words, I never knew this Sam. Sam, whom I knew was full of life and words also. Now I realized that it was my fault to spoil his date with Lisa. He looked so worried about it. “So proceeded further?” I asked. “Not yet. My boss is very cruel. He’s not ready to believe that I can deserve a promotion.”
“Some day he will believe and promote you.” I sneezed, caught cold of course, “But I was referring to you and Lisa. Any plans for the future?” “Do you really think so?” “Of course yes, I mean, you are well settled in career and if you think you love her, there is no problem in marrying, is it?” “Of course not. But I meant do you really believe my boss will understand and respect my capacities some day?” Sam looked hopeful to get answer in the affirmative. “Work issues?” I understood in no time, okay honestly, after some time, that he was having some problems in his office. “Not exactly.” He didn’t want to talk about his problems, perhaps. “If you have any problems, feel free to share it with us, dear. After all, what are friends for?” I tried to sound concerned but I didn’t know how concerned I really was for according to me people have to sort out their problems themselves. “Thanks.” Sam smiled. For the first time in life, I noticed that he looked so captivating when he smiles. Lucky Lisa, I couldn’t stop admiring her choice. “How’s your life going on, Dia?” he suddenly asked “Perfectly as planned.” I began narrating how my plans and dreams properly worked out had paid out well. I was expecting another promotion in the
next quarter for I had over achieved my targets for the three subsequent quarters. “Stop it, Miss Practical. I know everything’s going on perfectly as planned by you in your career. That’s why I call you practical. What about rest of the issues?” “What remains? I have done well in both the fields- professional and well as personal field. My social life is also going great. Just met Shauna today and now am talking to you.” “Of course.” Sam again became silent. “Are you okay?” I found out the reason behind this behavior of Sam. It had to be a break up, another break up but what raised my curiosity was that he never had looked shattered like this in any of his break ups. May be, Shauna was right about true love this time. “Of course.” The same reply again. “Everything okay between you and Lisa? You are still together, aren’t you?” “We broke off, actually, I broke off. Couldn’t bear her anymore.” Sam answered “But you said she was your true love.” I couldn’t believe this. After what Sam had said about this Lisa thing, my practical mind couldn’t just believe that Sam broke off; it had to be Lisa if break up was true. But then I thought why the hell will Sam lie about break up if they were still together? “So? Does that mean I cannot break off with her? And if you don’t mind, I don’t want to speak about this.” He again slipped into an unending silence.
I looked out of the window. It was still raining heavily outside and I knew it was raining inside Sam as well. I was very curious to know not the reason behind this break up, but honestly to know why Sam was so sad and depressed after this break up. After all, this wasn’t his first break up? I tried to visualize Lisa trying to force Sam into marriage but Sam wasn’t ready. So finally Sam walked off her. I imagined Lisa’s tears on the glass of the window. They were rain drops, not tears of course. SICK IMAGINATION. But I really was concerned about Sam this time. If I could do something to help himSuddenly the car stopped. My thoughts also stopped with that. I looked into the direction of Sam. He gave me a “Don’t-know” look. “You sit here. I will go and check the engine.” Sam suggested as if I was going to walk outside in the rain again so that I can sneeze non stop if he won’t suggest me. But something should be better kept just in mind. So I affirmed with a smile. I tried to figure out what the problem might be. May be the engine’s too hot or there might be some technical problem or a short circuit. Unending possibilities all leading to just one result- we were stuck on a not-very populated street. This day was getting more and more interesting. Sam appeared on the window and whispered something. He was all wet from hair to heels. Thanks God, I didn’t offer him a company outside in such a stormy rain. “What?” I opened the glass of the window to hear him.
“I’m going to get a mechanic. There was a garage behind. Will return in some 10 minutes.” Without waiting for my answer, he started off. I closed the window of the car and waited for him to come back. I just couldn’t fathom that when I started off my day in the morning, I forgot to hear weather news and so was without my umbrella today. How stupid of me? I thought. How can anyone forget to hear to weather forecasts? I just couldn’t bring it to my mind, correction, calculative mind. Suddenly I realized I wasn’t the only one who didn’t have umbrella that day. Even Sam was one of the fools with me. He always was, but this time, the difference was that I also was standing with him. My eyes rotated to locate an umbrella in the car. I knew it wasn’t going to be there, because if it was, Sam didn’t need to move out without it, but still wanted to confirm it, so I checked the car. Against my expectations, I found an umbrella lying at the back seat of the car. How weird? If he had the umbrella, why did he get soaked in rain? May be, he wanted to. I gave an answer to my over questioning mind. Then my eyes fell on some diary like object on the back seat. Out of curiosity, my hands reached there and picked it up. I knew it was wrong but I couldn’t let my mind wonder what possibly could be in that diary all the way. So I decided to open it. 7th July, 2007
I met her with Cristina today. She didn’t seem to make any notice of my being with some other girl. Forget about the jealously, she was very happy as I had find some one. Who has he written about? Why does he expect that she- whoever that person is should be jealous if he’s dating someone else? Unable to crack the answers, I turned the page. Unlike as in regularly maintained diary, this diary contained only specific dates and their events. The events were also described to the minimum possible length. At one moment I felt this wasn’t Sam’s diary. If it was his, then there had to be lot of words and events but I could recognize his handwritings and his attitude for keeping such hand written diaries. I never can understand what’s the use of keeping hand written diaries when you can have the same thing stored in your pc? 20th August, 2007 Lucy reminds me a lot of her. Lucy’s eyes are the same colors as hers. But yet Lucy can never be her, in fact, no one can ever be like her. 18th September, 2007 Today Mary asked me if I really loved her. How could I tell her the truth? I couldn’t lie as well. I told her the truth. She smiled and walked off. I just stared at Mary’s hair, exactly like her.
I was fed of reading the same kinds of instances with different dates. How can anyone be so monotonous? Her, her and her. Who this bloody HER was? I came up with a practical solution. I switched onto pages from the last. 14th February, 2008 Today I am sure she’s never going to love me. It kills me to even write this but this is the bloody truth. I saw her with some other guy today. I just couldn’t approach her and ask who he was. So coward of me! But I cannot help it. I love her so much. 6th March, 2008 She was very happy today. She got what she wanted. I am also happy because she’s happy. 26th June, 2008 I have found someone who’s a lot like her. Will try to forget her and move ahead in this relationship, but I wonder if it’s really going to help. I couldn’t forget her in 2 years with more than 20 girlfriends, so what are the chances of success this time? Miss Practical will tell the answer in no time. I just hope she tells what I want to listen.
I don’t know why I love her so much when she doesn’t come up from thinking about her career and success. She doesn’t think from the heart, for her over calculative and over practical mind prevents her from doing so. If only she knew how much I love herSuddenly I saw Sam approaching from the side mirror. I closed the diary and put it back at its place. Manners of course, as my mind will say but I knew it was to make sure that Sam doesn’t come to know that now I know how he feels, perhaps felt about me. “Got a mechanic.” Sam said, “You’ll be home within 25 minutes.” I was too shocked to say anything. I couldn’t bring it to myself that Sam’s love was not all the girlfriends he was wandering out with, it was me. That bloody HER actually meant me and all the time Sam was finding someone with some of my qualities. “If only she knew how much I love her-” I couldn’t complete this line because Sam came back. I wanted to know what the other half of the line was. This time, perhaps, it wasn’t my mind’s curiosity; it was my heart’s desire to know to what extent somebody can love me. Self-admiration, though it may seem, I wanted to read every line of that diary that had so many names written in it except mine, but every page speaks about me without even mentioning me. I don’t know what happened to me but suddenly I found myself rushing outside in that stormy rain.
“You didn’t need to get out. The car is ready.” Sam said almost tiredly. At any other time, I would have thought that why the hell does he need to be so caring about others, but at present his caring attitude seemed his chivalry to me. “Get inside or else you will catch cold and will start sneezing again.” He looked at me and said. How much he knew about me? I blindly followed his direction and got inside the car. Once again the car began to catch speed but the only difference was that this time I was silent. I was busy to remember each of the incidences where Sam could have disclosed his feelings for me, but he didn’t. REALLY COWARD. I smiled “Why are you smiling?” Sam must have seen my smile. “Nothing.” I lied. “You are all wet. Why didn’t you take the umbrella with you?” “I forgot.” “You forget things quite often” I said sarcastically. “Forgetful nature, you can say.” He looked confused but very cute and loving. “Evidently.” We finally reached my place. However it was Sam who reminded me that we have reached. I was too busy thinking about the diary to notice anything else. “Good bye” he said. Like a gentleman, he came to escort me to my doorsteps.
“What?” I didn’t like him saying this. “Bye. See you again.” “Hold on. You are so wet that you will also catch cold. You can wait for the rain to fade if you want.” I suggested though it was the most stupid suggestion I’ve ever made, it required every piece of gallantry I had. Now I knew why Sam couldn’t speak anything about his feelings to me. “Wait? Where? In the car?” Sam said. I must have lost my mind for I thought I am falling in love also with Sam’s mode of shooting short questions. “At my place, dear.” Though I had a habit of addressing the other person as ‘DEAR’, I seriously felt shy and blushed when I used this word for him. “Some other day.” He prepared to leave. “Gotta go now.” I couldn’t let him go now, not when I knew he loved me so much. I wanted him to stay there with me, watching rain with me holding my hands. I just didn’t want to let him go in this stormy rain. Oh God! I couldn’t believe I was thinking like all this. Bull shit, I have lost it completely my brain told me. But a small organ in my lungs who was already beating at a very high pace told me it wasn’t bullshit; it was love. I started realizing that Sam was always my love, stupid it may seem, but then falling in love was the most stupid thing I’ve ever done. This may be one of the reasons why I never expected or never wanted that Sam marries any of his girlfriends. It occurred to me.
Without my knowledge, I ran to Sam who was opening the door of the car. My heart beats raced at a faster speed. “What happened?” Sam was taken aback seeing me again. “That guy wasn’t my boyfriend, he was my client. We were discussing business proposals.” I blurted out, stupidly of course. “What guy?” Sam didn’t remember that incident he had quoted in his diary. “The guy you thought to be my boyfriend on Valentine’s Day.” I said. “Did you read my personal diary?” He seemed to have understood this. SO INTELLIGENT. I nodded. “How can you do this? Why did you want to”“If I didn’t read your diary, I would have never known that you love me so much, would I?” I didn’t let him finish the sentence. He listened silently without a word. “Sam, what are you waiting for?” I asked him. “I was leaving only.” Sam answered and prepared to go. “Stupid, I don’t want you to leave. Don’t you understand that?” I knew he was very confused but this time his confusion was seriously getting on my nerves however I tried not to be angry.
“I do understand that, Miss Practical, what I don’t understand is that what the purpose of Miss Practical to stop me is.” Sam wasn’t that confused. He was just trying to hear it from me. “Well there is perfectly planned purpose for that.” I knew at that instance Sam was not stupid as I always thought him to be, he just got nervous and behaved stupidly in front of me. “And that being?” “I love” I couldn’t finish the sentence, “I love having coffees on a rainy day. Wanna join me?” “On one condition.” “That is?” “You’ll answer in the affirmative to any thing I ask. Agree?” “Agreed.” I noticed his eyes getting naughty. “So do you love me?” “I do love you.” I waited for the next question but Sam looked just lost in hearing these words from me. “You will spend the entire weekend with me cutting away yourself from your career problems and your friends and family?” “Yes.” I didn’t wait to think about it. “Will you marry me?” He asked with all his patience and hope.
“Sorry?” I didn’t think he’s going to propose me for marriage so soon. “Will you marry me, Miss Practical? And don’t say no. you promised to answer in affirmative.” I hugged him and kissed him on his wet lips so that he couldn’t question me further. It was like a moment, it was like I felt alive for the first time in my life. The next Monday I gave a call to Shauna. I didn’t find time for her throughout the weekend, obviously one of the side effects of love is that you forget your friends when you are with your love. She received the phone. “Hey. How are you?” she asked “Well fine. I wanted to say something to you.” I wanted to build up a proper background to inform her of the recent developments between me and Sam so as I don’t look sheepish. “Did you reach well that day? I was so worried. You forgot your cell phone with me that day and you are not answering my emails also. Sent about more than a dozen of them.” “Yeah didn’t get time for it.” “So what’s the news?” Shauna asked “Actually remember I promised to throw a party if Sam comes out with an engagement announcement. Get ready, dear?” I informed her. “I told you, didn’t I?” Shauna was very happy, “He didn’t tell me. Bet he would be somewhere with his true love enjoying, won’t he?”
“Yes.” I didn’t have the intention to disclose that he was standing right beside me with his arms wrapped around my waist. “So when’s the party?” Shauna came to the point. “Tonight. And you are to inform all others to come at my place.” “So you are hosting the party at your place. Great.” Shauna didn’t like to hung up easily, “The bride will also be there, right?” “But of course yes. She is going to be there.” I gave a deceptive smile but Shauna couldn’t definitely sense anything fishy in me. I took a leave on Monday. My boss was very much astonished for this behavior for I had a reputation of taking leave only when there is an emergency and according to him, this was not an emergency. But for me, it definitely was. After all I was in love. I spent the whole day preparing to throw the best party I have ever thrown. However it didn’t seem too much of a trouble to me with Sam with me. At times, he would just come and kiss me and I would forget how tired I was. Shauna came early than expected. The reason was that she was too much of a helping kind. I thanked god that Sam had just left for some important task for I wanted to tell her everything along with the others. I wanted to see their faces; jaw dropped and surprised faces together. “So now you believe in love at first sight?” Shauna asked with a winning smile.
“Of course not.” I returned the greeting. I knew if I tell her the reality right there, even she would have to believe that love needs time but I didn’t want to let that happen so simply. I wanted her to jump in astonishment in front of everyone to prove my point. “Come on, Dia, what evidences do you need now?” “The guests will start coming at any moment now. I should go and get ready.” I skipped the answer. “But you are already dressed. And you look good.” “I would just be back.” I didn’t disclose that looking good wasn’t enough today, I had to look great when we make such a splendid announcement. So I went to my room. There on the bed, I found a gift packet. I knew from who it could possibly be. When I opened the gift packet, I found a nice evening gown inside. Evidently, it was from Sam and he wanted me to wear that gown when we make the announcement. I happily put it on. After several minutes, I became busy serving the guests. My home became a sort of a mini club. Everyone had arrived but Sam was nowhere to be. I was tired looking for him. Then a weird thought crossed my mind. Was he gone? Was all that love just a show? He cannot do this to me, actually no one. He was too sweet to even think of doing that to anyone. He cannot make me appear a fool in front of everyone by not turning up today. I almost sank down. “Where are Sam and his girlfriend?” Shauna asked. I felt like crying, but I regained control.
“Well how am I supposed to know?” I answered rudely. Suddenly a voice caught my attention. I recognized it in no instant. It was Sam. “Ladies and Gentlemen, I have an important announcement to make. Can I have your attention please?” I was very angry on him. How can he proceed with the announcement without me? The announcement was supposed to be concerning both of us. I walked angrily towards his side. Everyone was silent to give him proper attention. “Dear friends, after thinking for a long while I have decided to settle down in life, to get married of course.” A huge applause rocked my apartment. “Lisa, can you join me for a minute?” Sam called her. I was shattered. I couldn’t believe that that bastard ditched me. More incredible was that I, like a stupid girl, believed him and let him ditched me. I let him play with my feelings and made myself look stupid and foolish in front of everyone. Lisa came and joined him on the stage. I saw her for the first time. She was really beautiful and they were really looking CUTE together. I couldn’t believe that Shauna was right. They really looked like made for each other, a perfect couple. I thanked god for not sharing any information about my stupidity, my supposed love to Shauna or else everyone in the room would be making fun of me right now. But I had decided to teach traitor Sam a lesson. How dare he play with my feelings?
“Friends” Sam continued, “This is Lisa.” “I told you.” Shauna whispered into my ears, “Love at first sight is true.” I didn’t react to her. I just wanted a pistol to kill Sam. I hardly cared what will happen to me next. Obviously that decision was my hearts, correction, silly hearts and not my mind, practical and logical. I apologized to my mind for not involving it into the most important decision of my life. “I have decided to ask the girl of my life to marry me. I cannot let her walk out of my life now.” Sam was saying. I was burning with jealously and anger. “You all are the witness of this proposal and I know the answer is going to be YES.” everybody clapped, not me of course. “Will you marry me? Will you marry someone who you think is stupid, someone who gets nervous when you are near?” Sam was coming towards me. I couldn’t understand what his motives were. “Will you marry me, Dia? answer is going to be in you?” Sam asked, wiping didn’t even realize that I You promised your the affirmative, didn’t tears from my face. I was weeping.
“Answer me, Miss Practical? Yes or yes?” he smiled, bringing a diamond ring from his pocket. I now understood he must have been busy searching a ring for me. How sweet he was! “You are such a rascal but I will marry you. I love you so much.” I realized that Sam was playing a prank with me, “And don’t you ever dare hurt me like this?” I forwarded my hands ahead and he slipped the ring into my finger.
I forgot that there were many people present in the apartment and slipped into his arms. I held him so tight in the fear that he might not go away. We don’t know for how long it continued. “This is surprising.” Shauna said and we parted. “You two were carrying such a big secret.” Somebody remarked. Of course all of our friends were under the impression that we were together from a very long time. “And that’s why you were so sure that Sam isn’t going to marry Lisa.” Shauna hugged me. The whole party was a huge hit and I know I am not going to forget it for it changed my life. After all of them left, I was left alone, don’t worry, alone means alone with Sam. “Miss Practical, you were so scared when I brought Lisa with me, weren’t you?” Sam winked at me, “You should have known that it was just a prank. What happened to your calculations and practicality and logics then?” “Done away with them. Do you have a problem with that?” I said playing with my engagement ring. “Not of course.” He said, pulling gently me to his side, “I have some other announcement too, this one is just for you.” “That is?” “I got a promotion today. My boss said he liked my work.”
“Congratulations.” “It’s just due to you.” He said “Me? How come?” I couldn’t believe him. “You are the luck of my life. The moment you stepped into my life, lady luck also showered all the happiness on me. So I have decided to give you a new name.” “Really? What’s it?” “The Lady luck of my life.” He answered, “When do you think we should get married?” “First of all, remember, I am going to be the only Lady of your life besides being the lady of course.” I behaved like one of those stupid possessive wives and girl friends, “And secondly, I will marry you when I finish reading the entire diary you’ve written about me.” I still had the curiosity to know what the line said. “Do you really think that I will allow this?” “Of course yes. Do you have a choice, dear?” I patted his cheeks. “Okay read then but not in front of me. I am in the living room.” He handed me the diary and walked off the room. I opened the page where I had stopped reading that day. If only she knew how much I love her, she would come running to me. Even if it’s raining heavily, she would come out to me without giving a single thought that she might
catch cold as she is allergic to rainwater. She would want to hold me but I know she wouldn’t because she wouldn’t have the guts to say even a word about that love. But I know she will speak her mind without getting scared like me. O God! Will it ever happen????? I couldn’t resist myself walking towards the living room. He knew so much about me. “So you knew the very instant that I had read the diary when I came out of the car?” I asked him. “No I thought you had come out to meet the mechanic.” “No more lies and no more secrets.” I almost yelled with tears in eyes. “Okay fine. I had a slight idea but was not convinced because you didn’t say a word.” “You knew I wouldn’t say a word because I won’t have the guts to.” “But I thought at least you will show some way that you care for me.” Sam said, taking the diary from my hands, “Let’s now concentrate on future. When do you plan to get married?” “Obviously this month end so that we can have a whole month free for ourselves. I can take a leave from my work.” I answered “Stop being Miss practical.” “I am getting normal. Just imagine we can have a whole month vacation together for our honeymoon.”
“You are such a darling.” He pulled me. Of course I didn’t stop him. Why the hell should I????
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