Skip to main content

Happy Endings

Another year and one more birthday to celebrate! I love birthdays - the cake, the gifts, the wishes from friends, the party, the trips, the chocolate, the new clothes, the shopping... While I don't get everything on every one of my birthdays, I usually manage most of them. 

Two birthdays ago though, life wasn't all so well. March 2011 got the honor of making it to my top 5 Worst Birthdays Of All Time. In fact it was THE worst, beating out the previous record which was when my parents forgot my birthday! And why was it so bad?

So no one told you life was going to be this way.
Your job's a joke, you're broke, your love life's DOA.
It's like you're always stuck in second gear,
Well, it hasn't been your day, your week, your month, or even your year. 
2011 was so not my year. But this story, like all my favorites, has a happy ending. This year I'm all set to celebrate the best birthday I've had till now, in all my 27 years of life on this planet. There's going to be cake, fabulous food, amazing gifts and wishes from friends. Most importantly, I'll be celebrating my first birthday with the love of my life. So how did I get to the best birthday from the worst? Unexpectedly, that's how.

Now that I've given away the ending, I'll get to the part about how it all happened.

Cue the flashback sequence. The camera spins backwards and it's March 24, 2011, in Hyderabad. Lightning flashes, you can hear the thunder rolling loudly and it's raining buckets. (It wasn't actually raining on my birthday of course. Rain in March? What were you thinking? That's just the special effects!) 

Career: Though working at LIC ranks the highest on my list of Things I'd never want to do, I thought at least on my birthday I'd get to go home early & celebrate. But no! My birthday just had to fall on a Thursday, the one day of the week when I'm invariably stuck late in the office babysitting the server. Why does a server need babysitting? Because you see, computers can't be trusted to do their job, unlike say, human beings. At least that's what LIC seems to believe *shrugs*. Just another one of those weird things you get to see when working at a technophobic organization.

Love life: An Indian girl's love life goes something like this - the moment she reaches the so-called 'marriageable age' (def: socially acceptable/mandated age at which Family can start searching for a groom; varies according to religion, caste, status/education, location etc of said Family) the timer on the bomb goes off. From that moment on, it's a race between the Family and Time to get that girl married. More time passes, the girl starts approaching the 'Impossible to get rid of' age, wherein she becomes an embarrassment to her family by still staying single (worse if it's by choice!)

I hadn't yet approached that age, but neither was I even close to saying yes to someone. And it wasn't intentional either, not entirely. Like most people, I wanted to find someone I could fall in love with, someone who'd make me want to marry him but that someone was definitely not among the many guys my parents kept finding, after hours spent poring through matrimonial websites and what not!

So for my birthday that year, with both career & love life stuck at rock bottom, I ended up eating cake all alone (while my mother worried at home about the un-impending marriage of mine). Well to be honest, I wasn't completely alone. I did have the server for company. And the ticking time bomb.

To be continued...


Popular posts from this blog

Why Don’t We Raise Our Sons like We Do Our Daughters?

This post originally appeard in Women's Web: Why Don’t We Raise Our Sons like We Do Our Daughters?

One of the hot button topics right now in Indian media is the safety of women – or rather how our country doesn't really care about half its population. From rape, sexual assault, harassment (in streets, public transport, nearly every public place) to violence perpetrated on women, Indians are finally getting around to discussing taboo topics.
One refrain that caught my eye throughout these debates – both online and off – is the fact that the reaction of the majority of Indians is the same: girls should stay at home, not go out after dark, dress appropriately and so on if they want to stay safe. No one seems to bat an eyelid when laying down these precautions for women. Except that the reality is women would be far safer if all the men simply DID NOT RAPE or HARASS any person that looks remotely female. No one has to stay at home and become a hermit! That got me thinking further. F…

Arranged Versus Love Marriage

This post originally appeared in Women's Web: Arranged Versus Love Marriage: Here's Why Things Are Changing

In 21st-century India, change is so rapid that we barely have time to get used to something before some new trend is on the horizon. And I'm not just talking about technology here. Whether it is human behavior, relationships, societal or cultural norms, Indian society – along with the rest of the world – today is hardly recognizable to my parents or their parents. It's not a surprise that the institution of marriage and the process of finding a life partner is also undergoing a metamorphosis. Perhaps this is one of the areas where the gap between generations is the most obvious. Almost every day, there is a TV show or media report or blog post talking about arranged vs. love marriages. So I figured I would present my take on it as well! Whenever anyone talks about arranged versus love marriages - I don't know why they are always portrayed as opposing players, as…

One Step Up

Diya forced herself to relax while the attendant spread a mud pack on her face. She’d been nervous all week thinking about today. This was totally unlike the little beauty parlour she went to every month for eyebrow threading and the occasional haircut. No, this was a spa and they didn't just cut hair here. They styled it. And that was only the beginning of all the treatments a woman could get done. Normally she would have been too intimidated to even set foot inside, let alone enquire about the prices which she was sure would be too high for her budget.

But this visit was a gift from her dear mother for her 30th birthday. Luckily for her, the gift card was for a particular package which meant she would not be gaping like a fool at the exorbitant rates. Once again, Diya tried to relax telling herself that these women were being paid by her. She employed them and as much as she was sure they were secretly laughing at her naiveté, Diya wasn’t the one working for a living. But de…