Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Grow Old With Me!

By Sunaina Patnaik at Wednesday, December 31, 2014

I walked out of the railway station with the heart on my sleeve; my eyes wandered for you in the crowd. I tucked my stray curls perfectly behind my ears, when I felt your arms around my shoulder and your lips at the nape of my neck.

I missed you. I stuttered and failed to put it in words.

I let out a deep sigh. You looked so debonair even in those black pants and white shirt. 

Long distance was not easy. In fact, it was excruciating. However, looking at you, at that very moment, I have realized it was worth it.

You did not let me go out of your sight. Your car and its familiarity took me on a long trip of nostalgia.

You said I have changed a lot. I said you have changed a great deal too.

But your quirks still remained unaltered. The way you slightly hum a song while driving to your smile that calms my nerves—you haven’t changed! You were still that beautiful man who made my world pleasant.

You still gave me flutters. You still gave me the butterflies.

You were still your charming self.

I looked at the rose you slyly put on my lap when I tried to explain you the details of my journey. You paid attention even when the radio was playing your favourite song.

As the car passed through the post box that was beaten out of shape, I remembered your first letter to me, “I want to grow old with you.”

At 50, we are still growing older. Together!

We crossed a tiny coffee shop later. We called it our secret place, remember? We used to meet here often, in pursuit of exchanging letters, books, and gifts. I still remember all those poems you've written for me. And the letters, the letters are still treasured in a suitcase under our bed.

As we parked the car in our community parking lot, and walked towards our home, we passed the park. I remember how we met here for the first time. You were with your golden retriever, and I was with my book.

We met every Sunday after that.

As we reached home, I remembered the lovely moment when I stepped into this place 25 years ago. The note you left that day, “Make my house into our home with your words, our love, and the sunshine.

The note is still nailed to our mirror.

Over the past few years, many things have changed. Our tiny bed has been replaced by a king size one; our Videocon television has been replaced with a swanky flat screen; our Yashica’s roll camera has been replaced with a Nikon digital camera; my typewriter has been replaced with a desktop.

Everything has turned obsolete except our love for each other.

I walked into the kitchen to see our coffee filter damaged beyond repair. You have done it again. Is this our 15th filter or the 16th? I have even lost the count.

I walked into the bedroom to find you unpack my bags. You looked a little exhausted. 

You looked frail.

We were growing old together. You wanted it, didn't you? 

You were with me when I published my first story, and I was with you when you made your first fortune. You stood by my side when my parents left the world, and I never let you go when your pet died. You mocked my failed attempts at tying a saree while I suppressed my giggle watching you wear a dhoti. You were there when I panicked on turning 30, and I was there when you spotted your first grey hair.

We were there for each other. Even when one of us fell apart. 

As you noticed me standing behind you, you looked at me with your eyes full of warmth and affection. You smiled at me. Just the way you used to when you were 25.

I missed you. And I still cannot fathom why I cannot put it into words.


Aparajita on 31 Dec 2014, 20:08:00 said...

It is the best one I have encountered till date.
Loving it....:)

Sunaina Patnaik on 31 Dec 2014, 20:28:00 said...

@Aparajitha: Thank you.

R!P on 1 Jan 2015, 04:13:00 said...

Nice one..!

Sunaina Patnaik on 1 Jan 2015, 04:29:00 said...

@R!P: Thank you!

Keerthana said...

Superb feel!! Pure love at 50!! Best one till date Sunaina!! :) :)

Sunaina Patnaik on 1 Jan 2015, 20:10:00 said...

@Keerthana: Thank you! :-)

Rikitha on 22 Sep 2015, 01:19:00 said...

Awesome!!.... I just never get enough of your posts...

Sunaina Patnaik on 22 Sep 2015, 06:27:00 said...

@Rikitha: Thank you. :)


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