(This story was written as an entry to a contest of Indiblogger's Love Marriage ya Arranged marriage competition in association with Sony Entertainment Television, and linked to http://www.facebook.com/LoveYaArrange)
We both waived to daughters of our two friends boarding the college bus and came to the living room from the front Balcony. My friend Roma, came to this town few months back and today she found time enough to stay back in my house for lunch. She came with me to the kitchen and quickly I prepared her favorite French toast and coffee.
She was looking at the closed doors and windows of our neighbor’s two storied large building and said
“Your neighbors are still enjoying their summer vacation? I think they do not have school or college going daughter or son.”
Carrying the tray with the contents just prepared we came to the dining table and settled there. I said “ You were both right and wrong. They do not have a school or college going son and daughter, this is correct. But they are not enjoying an extended holiday in any hill station or sea beach. Right now they are in jail.”
“This came in TV and also in Print Media. They arranged their son’s marriage to a matching wealthy family. Just at the time of “Joymala”, there was a dramatic scene covered in details by all the electronic media.. Their son made a love-marriage before and that was registered. The first wife appeared in this marriage Pandal along with woman rightists and the marriage certificate. Lastly Police appeared and took them in jail custody.”
“My god, in arranged marriages, people make lot of verifications even then….”
“Not when the son marries secretly and do not tell the parents about it. Parents arrange his marriage and when the son declares about the marriage, they ask him to forget it and agree to their proposal or face extradition from the family property or business. That is what happened here.”
“This is a rare happening Susama. Out of millions you may find only one such example. But I still say arranged marriage is better than love-marriage” Roma said.
I said, “Although, yours was a love-marriage and you are almost to make the silver jubilee of your anniversary in a year or two.”
Roma cut a small piece of French toast, “Oh really you make them so nice. Twenty-three years before, Rajesh and I took a decision; little knowing that it was more of a revolt than a marriage. Although we thought that we do not care for the society and the recognition of our parents but it was incorrect.”
“How do you say so? Rajesh loves you so much.”
“True, otherwise we could not have crossed the bitter barricades one after another. Even after Rina was born, many relatives did not respond to our invitation, because I was from a different caste. Susama, when two persons agree to marry, they only pass through one stage, the boy and girl liked each other. Their proposal have to pass through few more stages. The boy’s family likes the girl and vice versa apart from both the families like each other. In our case we directly went through the final stage and the bitterness occasionally flooded our small nest, living completely cut from in-laws of both sides. Susama, You did not face it as it was a blessed arranged marriage.”
I said, “Yes it was. But, Som and I at first were two unknown persons. After the marriage was fixed we talked and met few times but insufficient to understand each other . This was the reason that we had hard times shortly after the honeymoon. Som’s family was a conservative one and has several mandatory rules and regulations. I had to face the problems alone and Som took his time to stand beside me. Tell me if Rajesh’s family agreed to this love-marriage, you would have never faced this problem. By the power of love, he is always beside you. There is another thing.”
“ Nothing very special. I know what naughty words of bedroom affairs you are going to say.”
We both laughed.
I said, “Not that thing exactly. Love makes thing easier and makes such effect that no one finds anything wrong with the partner. At the start of married life, every one makes mistakes and blunders. However, those with love blow it with laughter. Som and I took years to become lovers other than husband and wife. You were talking of bedroom story. I do not know why in the initial years during our intimate moments I used to feel that he belongs to someone else.”
“Was there someone else really?”
“No, he was a goody boy always.”
“Only bad boys and gals like us fall in love?”
“ I did not mean that Roma, Sorry.”
“ Aha! Do not say that word with me. I was just joking. But tell me do you still have the same feeling”
“ No! We came closer to each other just after I conceived. I suddenly was very ill and he was beside me giving me all the mental support I need. We fell in for each other from that time. But I still say …..”
“ What else, you got every thing in your life”
“ Roma, at this age I feel having sex with a person before loving him is a sin. One should marry someone whom she/he loves. Love happens you when and how you never no.”
“You serious mad girl. ou will keep me hungry. Where is Bhetki fish curry and hot rice.”
“ Come and help me in the kitchen. I kept the things ready. In microwave it shall be ready within ten minutes”
I do not know whether Roma was really hungry or she wanted to get rid of this boring endless topic of Love Ya arranged marriage. In Indian societies are the women arranged for Love and Marriage?