Saturday, 14 December 2013

The Lunchbox

“Twenty seven years is a long time,” she said to herself as she marked her forehead with a red bindi. The water was still dripping from her wet hair when she heard a grumble come from the bed. She could see the reflection of her husband turning in bed, and sighed.

Savita was only twenty-two when she got married. Her marriage was a dark cloud– childless and the death of her dreams. She wanted to know the ways of the world,travel,and know unknown souls. Though when she met Aravind, she bequeathed her devotion to him. His ways were harsh, and at times he would appear to be on his own. The recent years surfaced the cracks in the foundation of their marriage. Age was catching up to them, and she could sometimes take no more.

She stared at Aravind while he pushed away the breakfast and lost himself in the newspaper. The steam rising from the untouched plates and him sipping the tea were the only movements in the room.
“I will be late today,” he said as he got up to leave.

“When are you not?” she replied. He looked at her, amazed; she was not the kind to talk back.
The door slammed shut and she was alone to reflect on what had escaped her lips. If it had been years ago, she would repent. But at that moment she felt different- as if a sense of freedom had taken over her. She walked to the kitchen sink and looked out the window.

He was still standing there.

She did not know who he was, or if she had ever known him. He just stood there- at the crossroad next to the light and gazed into her window. It had been a few weeks but she had never inquired about him. A heartlost stranger for all she knew.

She would usually look away from him, paying no heed. But today she looked at him for a while, possibly a minute, before she pulled away and shut the window.

How long is long enough?

Savita is at the crossroads of her life. To choose between a loveless constraining marriage and lifelong dream to be free.

Read it here: The Lunchbox