Take my hand: Allure
I was leafing through a copy of the Sharodiya Desh and felt no desire to abandon it to get dressed for tonights dinner at a couples' we really don't gel that well with. However, it was almost 7:25. Although they lived a few minutes away, I knew it was time to move on. I tried to see if the bathroom light was on from my position on the sofa. No, there was no one in there yet. "Anish, sona... do you want to freshen up first?" I called out to my husband. There was no response. "Darling, We should set out in another 20 minutes or so...", I called out a second time. Silence from the bedroom again. Hmm.. Keeping my book away I walked over into the bedroom to find Anish snoring. I went close to his sleeping form and started to gently run my fingers through his hair. "Honey, you remember about tonight, right?" Anish opened sleep reddened eyes. "What, tonight you mean?" This did not sound good to me. I could feel the stirrings of an unreasonable anger. He never remembers these things! The onus of public relations rests on my shoulders in this family.. but.. no point in spoiling his sleep just now! Too many sleeps and evenings have been wasted on the issue, without effect. I breathed deeply to calm herself. "Yes, sona, tonight... in fact in another 15 minutes.. Do you want to use the bathroom first?" Anish ignored the question and pulled me close for a soft sleepy kiss. I loved his warm balmy breath on my cheeks.. see what I'm saying about no point in arguments? I wished he'd wake up and prolong this caress into something more... not gonna happen. So I shake him some more, firmer this time. "You've really got to wake up darling, I don't like to be late.." "You go first.. " Anish rolled to the other side of the bed. "I'll be along in a few minutes". My mood begun to sour again, but I controlled myself.
I begun to wonder why is it that our magic seems always interrupted with silly frustrations between us these days.. I remembered the time around two years ago when Anish and I were forced to live in two different cities, 3000 miles apart, because of our work situations. Every two or three weeks I would fly overnight to visit him for a weekend. The travel was exhausting. Anish'd be there to pick me up at the airport. Everytime I saw him after those breaks, I'd really notice him... not like seeing someone everyday. I'd really register his face, his sharp pointy nose, his long eye lashes.. As I'd get into the car, the smell of him, a mixture of his cologne and a pungent something else, would hit me with a familiar wave of longing... the tiredness from the journey would just melt. It was not a new style he wore, or, that he was specially thoughtful.. it was the simple effect of a break from monotony. I remember this one time we went to a beach straight from the airport, sat there in the warm sun and ate luchi and dry potato curry that I'd prepared the day before, packed and flown in! This, from someone who often is caught without supplies for as much as a sandwich these days! I'd come home and look over my plants, take stock of the kitchen and in every way feel renewed in my domesticity. I'd have had to (of course!) threaten Anish on the phone from at least 3 days prior, so that a sink full of dirty dishes and unwashed laundry were not part of my welcome committee... It was never arranged exactly how I'd want either (I always want things just so..) But it was.. enough. Since I'd come on Saturdays mostly, we'd try to catch some music and spicy fluffy empanadas at the local farmer's market some days... come home with an armful of fragrant peony blossoms or whatever struck my fancy. After the long abstinence, we'd each delay touching until we couldn't anymore and it would be so perfect every time. Though I Hated to leave him behind afterward, I miss the magic from those days....
This marriage anniversary I decided, I will make some special effort.. no easy gifts, complicated vacations, or boring eat outs. Well, to be frank, I'd toyed with the idea of a vacation, but I delayed too long to book anything! And Anish's gifting record is pretty dismal.. to date includes a pink micky mouse watch.. a plastic rose.. a pair of dull metal earrings.. a toy monkey.. I have a box to keep these miscellaneous useless items... so anyways.. I got goat meat that I cooked with dry prunes and loads of other spices, tangy sweet and hot.. a Mediterranean recipe you should try. We had vegetable biriyani and dil raita as well. After finishing off the cooking around 4, I called Seema up and we met at Macy's to buy a dress for me. I got a red halter neck dress and red shoes. Shopping with a friend provided there is no list to go down, and the ocassion is to splurge on yourself is an awesome thing! I hurried back around 6... Seema stuck around for a bit helping me light candles and arrange roses... Anish was thankfully out of the way at the gym. I'd feel embarrassed doing this just for ourselves with Seema and Anish both hanging about. Anyways... my good friend Giri also did his bit. And I think this particular bit finally made my anniversary incredibly sweet... So Giri knows most of the songs that embody the concept of romance for me.. because they were the ones from our college days that we'd fallen in love with together. He put together a collection of songs on a CD from Bryans Adams, Backstreet Boys, and Michael learns to rock. He dropped it off with a sumptuous chocolate cake and a really good bottle of Chianti when he came to pick Seema up. Anish loved the music. I was happy to deck up and cuddle up to dance .. really just soaking in the warmth from his arms, from the glow in his eyes, and the music in my soul.