Valentine’s day was celebrated a couple (pun intended) of days back, with a lot of fervour. Lots of people (read: the committed ones) were all awash in red, while many others (read: singles/cynics) saw red. Me? I was enjoying myself, watching both these types. And yes, writing this post. So, why am I publishing this 3 days after V-Day? Simply because I did not want to get it to get lost in all that red. πŸ˜‰

Since this was written on V-day, it is obvious that it is going to be about love. However, this is not going to be about love per se, I am simply going to tell you about the best love story I have ever seen – that of my parents. πŸ™‚

Almost 35 years...and still going strong!

Like all good love stories, this one too goes a really long way back. Both of my grandfathers were with the Imperial Police (post-1947, the Mumbai police). Both families were neighbours in the Police Lanes at Byculla (we are talking about the 1960s here) and it so happens that rice, sugar or pulses weren’t the only things that were exchanged between them. πŸ˜€ This was where love blossomed between the two. True to form, like most love stories, it wasn’t smooth sailing all the way. My maternal grandpa didn’t quite approve of the pairing and put his foot down, saying “no can do”. It was then that mom/dad did something which wasn’t quite so common in those days – they went for a court marriage. Yes, 2 witnesses from either side, garlands exchanged in the Registrar’s office, typical poses for the camera, and all that jazz. πŸ˜›

Well, the story didn’t end there. In fact, this was the real beginning, of a life-long story. One in which there were obstacles, ups and downs, sunshine and clouds, but most importantly, trust and faith. In all the years that I have been seeing my parents spend their lives with each other, one thing has always struck me – though theirs is a love marriage, they are not the typical “in love” couple. I cannot remember a day when dad bought a flower for mom or when mom sung a song for dad. In fact, the last time dad bought a flower home for mom, it was because he had got it at a wedding reception and did not want to waste it by throwing it away. πŸ˜›

So what is it that has really kept them together? There are many factors that make this happen, but the biggest one is the simplest. They want to be with each other – as simple as that. πŸ™‚

For all their differences of opinion, and their small (and sometimes not-so-small) arguments about how something should be done, they have always been one person to the world. No matter how or what they think about something, once they have (together) taken a decision on it, it is well nigh impossible to get them to contradict each other on that. If you love someone, you stand for them, come what may – this is something I have seen happening throughout my life. I didn’t have to read quotes or watch any cute videos to know that – I have experienced it at close quarters. Of course, this did create some problems for me as a kid. I would hate it when I wanted something and went to mom to ask for it. Her reply would be “I don’t think you need that now.” and then I used to go to dad and pester him. His only question would be “What did mom say?” and on hearing the answer, he would smile and say “Well, its not happening then, son!” I used to be super grumpy then but today I realise how it has helped me a lot, by teaching me to wait for what I want, and more importantly, deserving something before wanting it.

Another very important thing that I learnt from my parents is how to always care for the one you love. It isΒ OKΒ if you may not like all that they do, but at the end of the day, you value the person as a whole, and not the bits and pieces that make them. Till date, regardless of what has happened during the day, I have never seen mom let dad go to sleep without ensuring he has drank milk and neither have I seen dad hit the bed without applying cream to mom’s knees (she has a knee problem). To me, THAT is true love – no matter what all the books/movies/songs in the world tell me.

And then, people ask me why I am such a firm believer in love? Silly question, isn’t it? πŸ™‚