I was very happy when my sister got married. Before the festivities died down, I was put on sale, full-time. I was ready but needed some time to prepare myself for that big step. I was not young to put it forth as an excuse, since sister’s marriage is no more a pretext to stay away from searching for an alliance.
One fine day they tie me to a kite and send up into the skies for potential brides. My presence in the matrimony market is informed to relatives, friends, neighbors -“He is in the air, there, see”. Even posted my profile on Bharath Matrimony site.
” What are you looking for?”
” A girl kite”
“We know, but what kind of girl kite?”
“hmm, a simple, understanding girl, down to earth, nice, preferably flying(working)”
I was not clear if I wanted a girl simple in style, simple in manners, simple in thoughts, simple in emotions, simple in walk, simple in talk or simple in dreams. But I have decided I need a simple girl! –
And this search was not that simple and the air was blowing in the wrong direction. So much is at stake. If I like a girl, my parents have to like her, horoscopes have to match, the girl’s family reviews have to be good…..
There was one alliance which came through one of my relatives, the girl looked good in the picture. For a moment I thought my kite has reached its destination. We visited their house with the set up traditional. My parents and me were waiting in the hall, the girl brought tea and sat before me. She was working in a college as lecturer and pursuing her masters. She was nice, talking good, confident. talked for quite sometime. I felt good though there was not any spark to make me feel she was her. everyone was OK with the alliance but our Horoscopes did not match. My stars and girl’s stars are supposed to form a big Tick mark or at least a Dot but they formed a X mark.
My father asked some fore-teller in our village and even their forecast was not good. For some reason I did not make any firm stand and let it go.
These are the people who come into picture when you find that the sources of relatives, contacts has dried up to get any matches for you. Who wants to get into this game of mixing and matching when the requirements are very high on both sides. Once they come into picture suddenly the desert turns into a festival of kites. Now it gets difficult to choose. Many marriage brokers who came for my sister did not turn up for me – What’s wrong with me? Nothing is wrong but there are “Less girl kites – more boy kites”. My mother sent me to one such marriage bureau. To my disbelief there was a parade of beauty before me carefully enclosed in compartments. Never before I felt so powerful with my destiny(album of girls) in my hands.
Also I was feeling restless and uncomfortable with so many girls to choose from. The sky was filled with kites and all looked good! I felt as if I am out there shopping for my wife – materialistic. I kept flipping the pages of the album uneasily.
I just came out saying my parents will come. The sky again turned blue and the air outside felt so simple!
SIMPLE PARENTS, COMPLEX CHILDREN
Different boats came my way since childhood, First is school boat, with that I crossed the river then there was college boat. I loved playing cricket on the shores but I had to get into the college boat. once I crossed another river there was job boat. As I had family responsibilities I had to take that one(another excuse). All through this boat journey I had dreamed of jumping into the river and swim with fish and soak in its refreshing water. By the time I reached the shore I was so used to the boat journey that I did not learn swimming and could not dare jump into the river. Then arrived another boat..
“What boat is it, it looks big and colorful?
” It’s a marriage boat, get in” They tie my kite to it and leave into the air.
“This boat came from nice family, the girl knows paddling, she is in her job boat”
“What about swimming, can she swim?”
“Why do you need to swim, they have a lot of spare boats if any thing happens”
For many of our elders, life has been about traveling in boats to some common destination is familiar waters. Owing to prolonged stay under the external rule, the rivers were thought dangerous to swim in and boats offered little more safety. Thus boats have become the way of life and waters still dangerous. But the clouds are clearing and some people are jumping into the river and finding their own partners. But we make truce and bring them back into the boat!
Earlier our elders with their boats pursued food, clothes and shelter in the newly independent waters.
Now we are pursuing more space in already crowded, polluted waters. Lot of us have little choice because the fuel is in the boats and we do not have strong daring bodies!
Vexed with all this I went to USA and changed my location in Bharath Matrimony. My kite was flying peacefully in the cold clear sky. It felt lonely in that vast blue space. Many requests start pouring in from the matrimony site. and many NRI kites came looking for a partner.
Finding that I don’t have H1 visa or any intention to settle down here, they went back. I sent a request to a girl who was good-looking and in India. She accepted the request and her father called. Both parties were OK with the alliance and I started talking to the girl. One fine day when we were discussing our future plans, she revealed that she wanted to live in a foreign country for some years. Marriage was her ticket to eternal bliss! My kite was not guaranteed to stay in foreign skies that long.
One fine day, my mother gave me an ultimatum – “We have allowed you to fly alone this long, neither you are allowing us to find one for you nor you are choosing one”
“But Mom I am not getting suitable one”
“I am giving you three options you have to choose one”
Luckily the first alliance resulted in marriage!