My eyes open. Its Monday and five past 7 in the morning. I turn to see that she’s still sound asleep. I move her hair away from her eyes and gently kiss her forehead. That’s how I usually wake her up, and she loves it. We slept late, she love gossiping… and upto some extent I too… may be because of her company only, and still after all this time, while talking to her I can never keep track of time.
She twitches a little, moans a little and turns away to sleep again. That’s how she usually responds.
“Honey, I’ll be late. Again. Wake up”, I whisper.
She twitches again; half opens her eyes and pulls my shoulder towards her.
“Five more minutes”, she mumbles “Pleeeez”. It is too much for me to resist. And she knows it.
I lie down again for two minutes and then grumpily pull myself out of the bed.
“Honeyyyyyyyy”, I let out another wakeup call as I’m putting toothpaste on my brush, but hear nothing.
After a couple of minutes, I come out to see her finally up, sitting on the bed, still under the sheets. She is stretching her arms slowly, like a bollywood heroine. With still half open eyes, she gives me a ‘come hither’ look. When I reach her, she pulls me next to her, pulls up the sheets on me and snuggles up next to me.
Two more minutes of sweet gibberish follow ending with “Don’t go to office today… Pleeeeeease”. It is accompanied with those sad kitten eyes for extra impact… I love her eyes, deep and big. Even though I hear it every day, I still consider it every day.
With great difficulty, I get her out of bed and push her into the bathroom. I then proceed for my morning combo of online news and Sportscenter. Ten minutes pass. I feel her arms wrap around me from behind the couch and she plants a big kiss on my cheek. Before I even turn around, she’s off to the kitchen. Now that she’s fully awake, she’s realized that it’s getting late for me.
“Will you drink milk?” She asks.
“No” I reply, as always.
She hands me a glass anyway, followed by two minutes of explanation on how milk is good for my health.
“Yucckkk, there’s all sort of things floating in it. I don’t want it”
“That’s just malai (cream). Shut up and drink it”
I take five full minutes to carefully avoid all the malai and finish the milk.
“Gawd, what a baby!”, she smacks the back of my head before taking the glass away from me.
Halfway through reading the day’s editorial column, I hear her voice, “Aren’t you getting late?”
Yes, I am. I rush to the bathroom. 10 minutes later, as I am getting dressed, she walks in with breakfast. It’s my favourite: Poha with curd and kaccha aam chutney. She knows that I’m already running late, so she spoon-feeds me half the food. Finally, I’m dressed and I take the plate from her and start eating while returning to the editorial.
“God! Can’t you read that after you reach office?”
“Okay, Okay”. I gobble up the last 2 spoons together, place the plate in the sink and proceed towards the glass of orange juice.
“.. I know. I’ll get your bracelet in the evening”
“So said that on friday too…huh”
“Come on.. I was busy, you know”
“You are like this only, never pays attention to what i say…”
“Promise… today I’ll for sure, look I even put a reminder her in my phone”
“We’ll see….sand yeah don’t forget my Domino’s Chocolava too” (She loves them, her batch mates told me back in college… She looks so cute while eating it)
“Ohh, I know, you and your Chocolava”
I wash up and come back to the living room to see my bag packed.
“Will you come early today?”
“Yes, I’ll definitely try!”
“That’s what you say every day”
“No, today I will definitely be home before 6:30”.
“6:30?? That’s early??”
“Then what? You want me to come back at 4?
“I’ll stay home instead, why bother.”
“Yayyyyy!” (She’s like this only… right from college, I love her smile, that big smile and the way those white teeth shine)
“I’ll make up some excuse to my Manager and try to sneak out early, Okay na?”
“Tell your Manager that you have someone who’s waiting at home all day thinking about you”
“Why don’t you tell him that?”
“Sure. Give me your phone”, and she plucks the phone away from my hand.
“You’re crazy!! Give me my phone back”
“Only if you promise to come at least half an hour earlier than usual”
“Okay, I promise”
“Okay, take it.
Some moments later, I hug her and wave goodbye and head out towards the car. As I’m settling inside the car, I see her on the balcony. It’s raining here, but she’s there, just like every other day, waving goodbye and watching me till I’m out of sight.
While driving, I keep smiling at the thought of her trying to call my boss & getting him to send me home early and suddenly, I realize that I forgot to tell her how great the Breakfast was.
I feel that a phone call isn’t good enough and decide to turn back home… to look at her face once more, those big eyes, that smile and to hear that voice…
“kikikikik… kikikikik…. kikikikik …. kikikikik … kikikikik”
My eyes open.
I turn, hoping that she’s there, but that’s when I realize…
I am alone.