Two of my friends got married (to each other) last year. They knew each other since their graduation days. They did graduation and then post graduation together. I often visit their place. Once when I was talking to them, the wife suddenly said “Mrinal, now you too should get married..” Now thats a disadvantage of having got your close friends married. They want all others to immediately follow them and join the league. I replied that “I’m ready. But the thing is that I am not as lucky as you guys were. You already had the major part of this marriage project done, which was, to find a suitable mate. I, on the other hand, have to start”. To which next question came “there were so many girls in our college. You didnt find any one there?”. I was puzzled, a “No” would surely put me in the line of idiot morons. I hesitated for a while and said “but see.. We came to study there.. didnt we..?”. Now it was the turn of the husband. He said “Yaa.. We know how much fronts you have won in studies...” thank God, they did not discuss about my grades.
But that meeting left me puzzled. Seriously, what was the reason that left me ignorant of nice girls throughout my academic life ? Of course, it was not study.
But I can answer that. I did 7 years of my schooling in a Boys School and I believe that while in Only boys school or Only girls school we learn more bad things as compared to good things. I first time studied in a co education in My Engineering College. But there too, boys were happy in their own circle and girls in their own. And those (guys) who used to dwell between the two circles were utterly despised by other crowd of boys. And unfortunately I have always been follower of crowd. Thats why I followed the crowd and went to do MBA. And it was only during my MBA course that I came across the real co-education thing. There were not one but many nice girls. But unfortunately Murphys Law was applicable and “all good ones were taken” and “for those who were not taken there was a reason”. We could daily see couples waking down from the academic block to the canteen and back forth and having a nice walk and talk in the night too.
It was there that I recognize that girls too can be good friends, if not something else. Jokes apart, I made a nice friend circle and there were many girls too in that circle.
Last month 2 of them got married. One was a Bengali and other Assamese. The bengali had an arranged marriage and the Assamese a love marriage. I attended both the weddings but it was the Bengali wedding which made me think what I am going to write down now.
My friend dressed in the attire of a Bengali bride looked beautiful. There was a different spark and a completely unfamiliar radiance in her eyes. She was really happy. She was excited. When her husband arrived, there was a ritual in their culture which was then carried out. The bride was lifted up by few of her uncles and with her face covered with leaves she was brought close to the groom, I should say face-to-face with the groom. And there was a sheet which was spread over their head. After chanting of some appropriate mantras, she was asked to remove the leaves and to show her face to the groom.
I was there at that time. I saw when she removed those leaves and her face was very close to the face of her man, she was blushing but she was very happy. There was a little naughtiness in her eyes that time which were captured in the camera.
So what if she could not meet this man in her campus. So what if she has not spent 15 or 16 years of her academic life without this companion. So what she never had a nice walk and talk in the night with this guy in the college campus. All these things did not matter to her. Such thoughts might have occurred to her before that day, but, at that time, it was sheer happiness.
And her happiness in someway gave me the answer of my questions. She knew that she will have a beautiful life with the guy whose face was too close to hers at that time. She will spend the rest of the life with this man and she will enjoy much more than what the couples had enjoyed in the long relationships they developed in the academic life. Her love has been permanently arranged, not just marriage.
Arrange love marriages are often described as full of compromises. But I believe that if you see in that way even a life long relationship, which starts from the foundation days of life, say schools, is subjected to more types of compromises. When the two persons are not yet matured but they develop together, they evolve together, on each stage of life they are trying to adjust according to the comforts of others.
Once I used to think that people who get life partner by God’s grace in early days of life are luckier. But now I realise that it makes no difference. Love is the most beautiful thing in this world. And it is arranged for everyone.