I have never believed in arranged marriages. I ‘m quite afraid of relationships too. But now I am going to have to experience all those, thanks to my parents.
“Come on Nidhi, you have to hurry,” mom shouted behind my ear bringing me back to my senses. “Have you packed your luggage? Have you taken your brush? Tongue cleaner? Phone charger…?”She just went on and on. Firstly, I am not a kid and I can take care of myself. Secondly, if mom and dad are really worried about me then they should not accept this marriage proposal from that farmer. How can I adjust with him and what about my dreams!?!
Today we were going to meet that village farmer boy. I hate it; I don’t even know why I am going there.
After six hours of train journey we finally reached there. Nayak uncle and aunty were in the station to greet us. I am aware of the real reason we were meeting the family. “Can I take your luggage?” I heard someone say, and before I could answer, that someone had already taken my luggage. I recognized him in an instant, it’s him! The farmer boy! He looked good, far beyond my expectation. So what!!! I won’t judge a person based on his looks, and I still don’t know his mentality!
We arrived at their house, finally. It looks gorgeous- a villa surrounded by nature. And the scenery is breathtaking.
We got our separate rooms and I was too exhausted for chats. So after taking a shower, I stayed to take an afternoon nap.
After dinner, I was trying to read a book when I heard a knock at the door. “May I come in?” I responded a yes. Here he was, “what happened?” I asked eagerly. “If you need anything, then inform me,” he said and I nodded.
He was about to leave then suddenly turned and asked, “What are you reading and where did you get that?” “It’s a book. I got it from your shelf.” “Do you love to read?” was his next shot. “Hmm… I love reading and what do you like to do” “I also love reading and, harvesting,” came his prompt reply. I frown at this. Who in the world loves harvesting?.....The silence lingers in the air. I realize I still didn't know his name and this was embarrassing, so I turned the first page of the book to see his name. “Ankush” I read it loud without realizing it. I paused, our gaze met for a brief moment, making me blush a little. “Good night, Nidhi,” he wished me and disappeared from my sight. I spend that night twisting and turning in the bed and blushing stupidly.
The next morning we all were going to visit their grape vineyard- I and my mom went with Ankush. “What have you studied, son?” mom started breaking the awkward silence. “Aunty I have completed my MBA and I am a scientist at the Indian Institute of Agricultural sciences.” Oh…my jaw drops.
“So why are you harvesting,” I asked with curiosity. “Because I love to,” he grins at me. “So you need a housewife?” I asked nervously. “Of course I need a wife but not definitely a housewife. If my wife wants to work, I’m ok with it,” he continued, “What more do you want to know about me, Nidhi?” My expression softened at this question. “Err...Nothing,” is all I managed to say.
The vineyard was beautiful; I had never seen anything like this in my life. Mrs. Nayak came to me and started explaining about the vineyard. “Do you like it? It’s where I implement my energy and time,” Ankush whispered. “Yes, I like it. In fact, I love this place,” I replied meeting his eyes, and our eye contact lasting more than the expected seconds.
While returning, I and Ankush went in a separate car. He took me to another farm. “Let’s go”, he said taking my hand and we moved towards the farm. I could see a small pond on the other side of that farm and the cold breeze blew my hair over my face. Everything was beautiful- picture perfect.
“Can I ask you something?” Ankush asked me after a while. I don’t know why, but I became nervous and started to tremble a bit. “Hmm,” I managed. “Don’t you like me?” I stared at him. “Yes, I like you,” I uttered.
“Then marry me,” he said, without hesitation. I was dumbstruck. Is he asking me to marry him? Is he proposing? “Yes,” I replied innocently. I couldn't help it. I couldn't read his expression. Is he happy? Why is there no reaction? Is he thrilled? He slid his hand on mine and planted a soft kiss on my palm. We looked into each other’s eyes. And that was the beginning of our love, our happy ending, our own “Happily ever after”.
WRITTEN BY ARPITA DASH (ME)
EDITED BY PRATIKSHYA MISHRA
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