Sigh…

“Paimana bideh ki khumaar astam

Man aashiq-e chashm-e mast-e-yarastam

Bideh, bideh, ki khumaar astam;

Dilgeer garzama labela taana

Khabar me waakhla, raasha jaanana

Khabar me waakhla, raasha jaanana

Tarso ba garzay te bela mana?

– For the entire concept of love resides beyond languages, religions, cultures and creeds. It’s beauty lies in it’s imperfections rather than it’s stark perfections. It’s true essence isn’t present in the union it brings, its rather visible in the connections it forms. More than a humanly connection its a bond beyond the comprehensions of naive minds and blind eyes. It’s the purity of a soul and the maturity of a heart.

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So much for ‘Love’ ?

“Honey can you write down your Facebook name on a paper for me?” My mom asked while watching the ridiculously lame soap, which is apparently the new Desperate Housewives for all Pakistani women these days.

“Why? So you can give it to some woman dying to hook me up with some rich, good looking guy, just so he can drool over my Cover Photos and assume I am too modern (read awesome) for them?!” I said, completely annoyed.

My mom’s jaw dropped down, my sister gasped and my grandmother uttered something unintelligible under her breath and all  three of them stared at me not able to comprehend what they just heard. I stared back at them probably with much more piercing intensity than they were capable of bearing. The minutes passed and the silence got awkward. I picked up the pen, wrote my name on the bright yellow sticky note, stuck it on the refrigerator and almost ran back to my room, unable to contain the anger building inside me.

Why do people relate love with relations and weddings? Why will they go to such lengths and hurt their beloveds just to find love? Doesn’t love free you from the hatred or the hurt? Aren’t you supposed to find love or let it find you on its own rather than having others try to take you to it or bring it at your doorstep? They have made love look overrated by relating it with romance and matrimony. It has become essential to wear an expensive diamond ring on your finger, spend a million bucks on the celebrations and sign legal documents just to assure others that you love someone and that they reciprocate your feelings. I can’t help wondering why? The concept of love goes beyond these worldly matters and ceremonies. Love is not finding someone perfect to spend your life with. It is to live with and love all the imperfections around you. Isn’t it?

I was only juggling with my thoughts and questions when my mom entered my room with expressions I couldn’t read. Or maybe the expressions I didn’t want to read.

“You know we only think about what is good for you and care about your best interest.” She said.

“Mom, I know and I love you for that but you need to understand that Happiness is not equal to Husband.”

“Listen young lady, you can’t always have things your way. Also, you need to fix your Facebook profile. The rules made by society must be followed in order to maintain good image and peace.”

“Isn’t society just a reflection of who we are? Its our good and our bad, mom? And which society are you talking about anyway? The one where you promised the mother inside you to love and protect me or the one where you pledged to present us as a picture perfect family or the society you resent so much because its full of hypocrites, liars, backbiters and bastards?”

She opened her mouth to say something but then didn’t. I saw her surrender there. Not in front of a misbehaving, spoiled daughter but in front of a woman trying to keep herself from being caged and defined by the society. She was left speechless yet once again and she knew why. She kissed my forehead and left the room without uttering another word. I saw understanding, envy, pain and love in her eyes. When she left, she left me with a million more questions and thoughts in my mind.

I sighed with a heavy heart and resumed reading Forty Rules Of  Love only to stumble upon these words;

“The quest for Love changes us. There is no seeker among those who search for Love who has not matured on the way. The moment you start looking for Love, you start to change within and without.”

I silently complained in my prayer and asked God to make people understand and make them let love be before drifting to a dreamless sleep.

Redefining.

They kissed. Slowly, between the smiles and living in the moment. It was surreal. The night was unusually quiet and dark. They kissed again. This time because it was the requirement of the moment. The cold breeze coming from the wide open windows brushed against their skin, making them shiver under each other’s touch.

“I like the easiness and vulnerability of this moment.” He said going through her book shelf and lighting a cigarette.

“Vulnerability is a social construct. And so is love. I like what this is.” She replied while going back to fixing her study table.

They both moved around the room, sharing a cigarette, kissing now and then, listening to music, tossing the empty coke cans, singing along the lyrics and ranting about random stuff.

“This, happening here, is right. It makes sense. Its harmless. You know not caring about being labeled. Friends with benefits. Such a stupid thing to say. Pathetic, don’t you think? I mean they have made romance look overrated by relating it with love all the time. Fucking helpless love-struck morons. You’re getting me, aren’t you? Isn’t it just…….”

And the night continued in the same fashion.

Here we go again…

And here we go again, fighting, yelling, screaming, kissing, loving. Passionately. Completely. Irrevocably.

And here we go again, prolonging the silence.

And here we go again, finding some meaning in the breaking of hearts and falling of sighs.

And here we go again, moving beyond the pain.

And here we go again, rejoicing the union of the souls.

And here we are again, dreaming…

A Blessing In Disguise.

“Hello. Yaar suno what are you doing abhi?”

“Hey nothing. I’m in my room reading a book. Why?”

“Yaar idher ajao lets order something. I’m bored and hungry.”

“Acha gimme five minutes, okay?”

“Alright.”

I grabbed my phone, wallet and key, locked the room and walked over to the next room. He had left the door open for me and since it was always very informal between us, I just walked in. His two room mates were fast asleep so we decided to go over to my room because it had the extra sitting area and order the food.

“Two Chicken Cheese burgers and two cokes please. Room 101. Thank you.”

We made small conversations, laughed a little and fiddled with our phones until the room service guy arrived with our food. Though the food there was pathetic, we ordered it every night nonetheless. Anyways, the guy arrived with our food looking sleep deprived and slightly high. We paid him and he left without saying a word.

“I have always hated eating alone. And some of my not-to-be-remembered memories are of the times when I had to eat alone.” I said. “I know me too but sometimes its good like that. Loneliness can be a bliss sometimes you know.”

He had told me everything about himself earlier that night and the friendship between us changed in an unimaginable way. I can’t remember the last time I was able to talk my heart out in front of someone without thinking about being judged. We ate while making small conversations about current hot gossips in our social circles and our existing but hopeless love lives.

“Lets finish eating and go sit downstairs in the garden. Its kinda nice out there and I need to smoke too.” He said.

We left the plates outside my room and walked over to the garden. The hotel was deserted. Shady as we liked to call it. The view however was breathtaking. The night was unusually quiet and the moon was shinning proudly against the dark sky. We walked over to the far end of the garden and sat on the slightly damp grass. He lit a cigarette and we started to talk. It was one of those conversations where you confess, find something about yourself and get to know the other person all at the same time.

“WHAT?! WTF?! How did you know that?” He said, utterly shocked.

“I know. I’m very observant. And sometimes its very easy to see through some people”. I laughed.  

Haaan but phir bhy how? Its not like I don’t know you or something.”

“You know about me but you don’t know me.” I said and winked at him. 

He looked so different under the moon light. Contend. Beautiful. Not the same person I met in the morning. It was as if he had removed an invisible mask and now he sat in front of me with all his expressions naked.

“You know what I mean, right? That something. Yaar I know it exists.” He said.

“I know. You know nothing can happen and there’s possibly no future but you still hold on to these hopeless shreds just because its so beautiful the way it is.”

We talked about all the things possible. Relations, life, families, society, social circles, men and mostly men.

These men are chutiyaas, I tell you.” He said while lighting up his fourth cigarette.

“Pata hai yaar phir bhy kasam se. Itna frustrating hai yaar.”

“Frustrations ki tou baat hi na karo bhenchod khatam hokey nhy deti!”

And we burst out laughing on that.

We were still laughing when we heard Fajar ki azaan. “Hum kitney haram hain kasam se. Azaan ho ri hai hansna bandh kero.” He said between the fits of laughter. “Blasphemy ki hadd hain aap.” I said

Seclusion is such a bliss sometimes. Sitting there on the damp grass of a shady hotel while the world slept and  was far beyond our concerns, I found joy after such a long, long time.

He helped me stand up and we walked back to our rooms leaving a night full of memories behind us.

A Late Night Walk…

He came over to see me out of blue last night when no one was at my place.

“Wanna go for a walk?” He asked. “Sure.” I said, grabbed the keys and walked out with him.

It was way after midnight, the streets were deserted and far off I can hear the sea roaring to life with its high tidal waves thrashing the rocks in joy of their union. It was unusually chilly. Or maybe it was his presence and the night that made me feel so cold, vulnerable and strong at the same time. I was wearing my favorite jeans and a V-neck cutoff shirt. And he, well he was not in his best attire and I wondered why?

We walked through the streets until we reached at a point from where the sea was visible. The road stretched in front, separating us from the unclean sand and beautiful in it’s own way Karachi beach. He took off his jacket and handed it over to me. I gave him a very confused look. His eyes were full of determination, rage, passion and somehow love. The last part scared me. I took the jacket from him without saying a word, put it on and rolled my eyes at him to which he smiled. We crossed the road and walked over to the damp rocks. He held my hand and pulled me over to his side so that I was seated close to him.

We stared at the sea in complete silence. None of us spoke yet so many words and sentences were exchanged.

He always said that he would never choose to live by the sea. He can’t live near something so strong, so influential and so harsh. Well now that he does, he doesn’t complain much about it. I, on the other hand, always wanted to stay close to the sea. It keeps me calm and tickles some sort of thrill inside me both at the same time. I remember once we drove past the sea and he said that the sea and the city both have a very forgiving heart. Part of the reason he didn’t like them. This always confused me but I never brought it up like a million other things about him having the same effect on me.

The sea stretched far and blended with the sky at a point making is difficult to distinguish between the two of them. The grays melted into blacks and the sand far off seemed like wet silver glitter. The moon was as-usual alone and breathtaking. Even at such a dark and quiet time, the stars weren’t visible. I think it is one thing I’d want this city to have. But again, the imperfections of Karachi make it more beautiful and real.

Two guys on a motor bike passed by, giving us weird looks. Probably thinking what everyone else would upon seeing two people dressed like that at such an ungodly hour. I brushed the thought away, closed my eyes and let the wind play with my hair and caress my skin. When I opened my eyes, I found him staring at me with such intensity in his eyes that it made my heart skip a beat. He tucked a loose strand behind my ear, blinked and looked away before I can read his expression and adjust to what just happened. How can I ever keep up with this man? Sigh. He took a cigarette out of his pocket, lit it and started smoking. I looked at him and remembered how once he said that he’d never smoke in front of me.

I stood up and started walking towards the water. A moment later I found him catching pace with me. We walked quietly, hand in hand, along the sea line leaving the city moan and unite with the sea behind us.

Random. Too random.

No, things are not right. And maybe it’s good that way. Maybe it’s meant to be. I’m happy and that’s what matters to me at this moments. Not satisfied but happy.

I like uncertainty. It’s just that maybe I’m not still used to it. Sigh. Unprepared presentations make me feel weird. I tend to go for them when I just shouldn’t. Sigh again.