Its February ... it’s the week before the week of the Valentine's (or is it Valentines?) day. The private radio station here is celebrating the "Valentine Week".
Its the first week of February and hence Im extra busy at office, not that the work load increases, but the concentration levels need to increase, the reports we prepare percolate upto that part of the organizational pyramid where no one but a lone pigeon can reach (if you have seen statues put up on the town squares, you will know what I mean), no error is tolerable, and hence the increase of the tension in this week. Good for me. I like my mind occupied.
It’s February and its cold the weather seems to reflect my mood rather than the thousands of others who eagerly welcome February. I have a routine that helps me sail through these short days of February. Now, it isnt that a particular day or a particular month makes my life unbearable, I would not want to make the rest of the year feel robbed of its achievement. It’s just the publicity and the media hype that gets on my nerves making it more miserable, and then there are the memories.
Its February, I wake up early ... attend classes... concentrate on what new costing technique the lec teaches, but then ... I can see that a couple who usually are all concentration are now distracted by each other, my lec spots them too... and he tickles them some more with his wit and sarcasm, I can see a few more faces go red in the batch. The lec catches my eye, probably he sees me because my face looks so blank... I smile, make an excuse and get out of the class. I drive my way back to home ...I honk loudly at a car going at an unbearably slow pace ... the show my fist to the driver, just to see that he is concentrating on that "cute-li'l-thing" trying to get her in the car and wooing her with roses. I shake my head and move on.
I switch on the TV at home, the music channel blares out some unimaginably mushy music and shows two semi nude humanoids fill the celluloid ... i change the channel, the Hollywood movie is about "loving -sharing and caring" I switch on to a news channel ... I find peace here, Israel’s West Banks are being discussed, I lean back and smirk ... but momentarily, he talks about the increasing greeting card sales............................
Its February, but my routine knows no difference to any month, the company car arrives right on dot, I get in impassively, nod at the driver's curt "Good Morning", he turns on the Radio, a mushy couple are being interviewed, "Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh Mohit, I louuuuvvvvveeeeee youuuuuuuuuuu" a young female screeches with the "nails-scratched-on the blackboard voice”, something I hate (the voice I mean). The driver is spell bound at the open confession of love ...he is so awe struck that he drives straight into a bike, after profuse apologizing, we go ahead and are stuck at a signal, I see the same driver so stuck with the pillion rider that it would be a miracle if her ribs did not break with so much nearness, she whispers into his ear and he smiles meaningfully, I turn my attention to the radio.. A retro "Bhool Gayi Sab Kuch" is followed back to back with "Tere mere milan" beautiful songs ... I would have loved to hear them any time else, not now, not in February. I ask the driver to change the frequency, which he does with some bewilderment; usually I love the station that’s on ... A Kannada song ... "Nee Amrutha Dhare" a wonderful wonderful song, but not in February.
I reach office , talk to a couple of colleagues, one is red in the face , he's got his dream date for the 14th , another is shy ... "He's asked to get engaged on the 14th , isnt that soooooooooooooo rrrrrrrrrrromantic" stressing the "o" and the "r" , it would have made the inventor of English turn in his grave, I smile , congratulate her and get in ...
My friend calls ,Sammy, maybe , some of February's charm has rubbed off on him. He calls up and sings romantic songs (not to me , he just "sings"), he's got another romantic mushy song recorded as his called tune , I laugh at his antics... he's one of the few people who makes me laugh, I mean not "laugh " as in the dictionary meaning , "LAUGH" as in "from the heart" Im happy when Im listening to him , I dont know if he feels the same , but then he's one friend Im proud to have made. By now Im sure he is smitten by some one. I mail another friend, and Raj is smitten by a girl he saw in the Food Court. I smile , I love this guy , he has no pretensions , I can talk anything and not be misunderstood, I can be a guy when Im with him .... I feel so male and so free when Im his friend, another friend Im proud to have made.
Such a contrast, Im more of a girl when Im with Sam and I love it, Im more of a Boy when Im with Raj and I love it!
Yet February is wretched, it will not allow me to bask in the sunshine of a tiny laugh. I dont know why, It February, that’s why. I ask Raj about his plans for the 14th and he says the same sentence he said a year back that he hates it! Lols, I ask him if his views will remain the same in case the girl-at-food-court gets pataofyed. His answer is neither affirmative, nor a denial he just goes "You have to be the devil dont you?"
Its time to go home, Im aching for that lonely walk I have at the night in the garden nearby, and find that Im no longer alone today.... we have at least a dozen couples in the soft moonlight today , I sigh, wince and get annoyed at this intrusion of my "private walk" , yet Im not grumpy when I interact with other humans , Im perfectly sane , crack jokes and laugh, throw sarcastic comments and bitch around, bark orders and make lives miserable the only difference is that it is February.
I walk lost in memories of a long bygone period ( **laughing at the last bit , it was just over 2 years now**) but it does look bygone now , a small voice nags at me , weigh myself in the graciously overused weighing machine , and see that Ive regained the last of the 5 kgs Id lost in the past month. I allow myself a grimace.
I reach home , a poem has just struck my mind, I need to jot it down , I open my diary, and it opens a certain page , an indicator of a period when I was truly deeply madly in love ( no , not with Savage Garden) ... I close it shut and reach for the book that has been delivered by the library, Im a member of the "Easy Library" that delivers books to your doorstep, I had reserved a certain book almost 2 months earlier , that , for some reason got delayed until now, I read through and realize its a love story. I grin, no humor in the grin, I can hear "AAshiq Banaya" from the adjacent house, a teenager lives there (hard to think I was a teenager 3 years ago) ... I sleep, rather try to, I toss and turn ... I think probably its time to let out stuff, at least by crying, but I dont feel like crying, I cant cry, I just lie there in the darkness ... some memories, some blankness, some hurt, some guilt...
I wake up, its still February, a whole 3 weeks before it ends.