Letter to the ex-wife…

Dear Soumya,

Finally I get to spread my arms and have the entire bed to myself. I was looking forward to this freedom for the past few years, and finally time and space are mine alone. 

But hold on, why am I not all kicked about life again, the way it was always supposed to be? I had to roam the world, read 100s of books, sleep with 20 different women and exercise daily to build those ever-elusive 6-packs. It’s been a year now and I can’t even tick mark one of them! Why don’t they excite me anymore?

The eyes do shut down every night but the mind remains alert, hoping to hear the light snore which used to lullaby me to sleep. My hands tentatively move around trying to touch the soft fingertips which had warmth and at times heat too, as my once-reddened cheeks would endorse. Do you still grow your fingernails and paint them with that weird shade of silver?

Yes, I know I was the one who blamed you for being the reason for us drifting apart. Your anger, your tears and your constant cribbing were taking a toll on my peace of mind. But then somewhere I forgot that those were born out of my indifference, my cold behavior and my falling out of love with you. You finally asked me did I ever love you? I did not reply, which said a lot and you left…

Today, I ask myself what is love? If it’s not yearning for you to grab away the Belgian chocolate scoop from my hand, or change the channel the very moment when Sachin is about to hit yet another century, or chuckle at my inane jokes when everyone else in the world seems to be rather laughing at me.

Ma and Pa miss you but they won’t tell me. They want us to be happy – whether together or apart. We laugh often now, but it’s worse than the canned laughter in the late-night sitcoms, we all used to ridicule. Life is good otherwise, my cholesterol is under control and I don’t fart that frequently anymore.

I saw you at the grocery last month – you still buy watermelons? But you never shared my liking for them. I wanted to walk over to you and tell you to burn that fugly frilly yellow frock, but strength eluded me as always. Next week, I’m moving out of this goddam city which throws up your shadows around every nook and corner. But then I know a part of you will never leave me…You’ve taken away my soul and left yours behind in my heart. The heart which I once claimed beats only for you and never thought that it always will.

Love you hamesha,





‘Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the desire to mate every second of the day. It is not lying awake at night imagining that he is kissing every part of your body. No… don’t blush. I am telling you some truths. For that is just being in love; which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over, when being in love has burned away’ – A quote from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Los Angeles – USA, 1987

She put on her sunglasses and waited for Roger to walk out from the front seat to open the door… There was a huge crowd waiting outside the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood Boulevard. She took a deep breath and pulled down her burgundy sequin gown slightly to reveal the assets that had taken the entire world by storm….

As soon as she stepped out of the black stretch limo, the flashbulbs went into an overdrive…She put on a pout and waved across to the crowd held back by the beefy guards standing on the sidelines… A Michael Jackson look-alike moonwalked towards her with a rose but was stalled by Roger in his tracks.

She removed her glasses to have a better look at the 2500th star embedded on the concrete recently. The five-pointed terrazzo and brass star read ‘Deborah Gibson’. Aasim would’ve been really happy to see this – 10 years back on a rainy Sunday when they had just got married, he had foretold that one day her name would be shining the brightest on this street.

“Congrats Debbie – how do you feel to have yourself embedded into a hall of fame at such a young age?” – an eager rookie from TMZ thrust his mike from amidst the jostle of the 20 odd entertainment journalists gathered today to get a juicy sound bite from one of the most controversial stars Hollywood had seen in recent times.

“Just feel a bit old now that this piece of metal has been engraved… But I guess I should have got it much earlier.” – she ran across her fingers across the red curls, which were as much a part of her personality now as the famous pout.

“And how’s the celebration planned for this momentous occasion?”

“A movie date with Aasim – of course one which featurs Ms. Deborah Gibson.”

She could see Roger moving around her a bit uneasily, as soon she mentioned the name. She answered a few more questions before whispering Roger to take her back to the mansion.



She walked into the sprawling bedroom – the curtains were closed across the huge glass doors – there were no windows and no walls – Aasim liked life to be open and bright and so did she…The whiff of lavender from the flowers across the 2 side tables gave a light, fresh feel to the room. She had asked Mary to specially ensure these were ordered today, on behalf of Aasim for her…

She could hear him snoring although it was only 7 in the evening. She quietly put their favorite Charlie Chaplin movie in the player and poured a couple of glasses of Chardonnay…The dim lights accentuated her silhoute onto the white screen installed across the bed.

She walked upto him and kissed him on the forehead.

“Happy Anniversary darling!”

Aasim opened his eyes, the paralysed body unable to move or smile, but she knew that his heart was still beating – happy and sad at the same time. It had been exactly 10 years since the day they got married and their plane crashed!

‘The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched. They must be felt with the heart’- Helen Keller