“She broke up with me...”, Jatin said, in a painful voice.
“I broke up with him. But God it was horrible...”, Shipra said, in a frustrated tone.
Mukul and Jyotika, their best friends were sitting with Jatin and Shipra at their respective homes, trying to find a way to pacify their best friends, although for different reasons. Jatin was heartbroken, the love of his life had just shattered his heart into tiny little pieces. Shipra, on the other hand, was frustrated, angry and shocked by the events of the day.
“Cool down bro”, Mukul said. “She was never your type anyway. You’ll get someone better. I had always warned you about her. Time to move on yaar. Cheer up!”
“I really thought she was the one, you know. Am I such a loser? And to think, I even told my parents about her!” Jatin groaned.
“YOU TOLD YOUR PARENTS??” Mukul exclaimed out loud.
“HE TOLD HIS PARENTS?!?” Jyotika exclaimed out loud as Shipra told her the same news.
“He is such an idiot! We had an understanding that we won’t involve our parents till we were committed”, Shipra shrieked in anger.
“So is that why you broke up with him?” Jyotika asked.
“No. It was just that I couldn’t bear him anymore. I mean, one needs her boyfriend to be romantic, but not over the top! I was tired of getting 10 messages a day on my phone about love. I was tired of conversations which were only romantic in nature and nothing else!”
“I tried to be as caring as possible. I used to send her nice messages. I was never rude while talking to her. I don’t know why she decided to end it...”, Jatin wept. “That too on a day when I proposed..”
“YOU WHAT?!?” Mukul jumped. “You proposed to her?”
“Yeah. And I had planned it so well. I decided on the most romantic of locations to ask her the question. That was when I told my parents too. They really liked her anyways. They had known her family for a long time. So they were really happy for me. But everything went so so wrong..”
“So you broke up on a day when he was proposing to you?” Jyotika asked Shipra.
“I didn’t know he was going to propose!! He had asked me to meet him yesterday and I went. I had already made up my mind to tell him. And wasn’t it better that I told him? It would have been so much worse if I had said yes and then broken up later”, Shipra tried to justify herself.
“But why did you wait till he popped the question?”, Jyotika asked. “You should have said it as soon as you saw him. It would have saved you the situation that followed.”
“I know”, Shipra said, quite animatedly. “I should have done that. It was just that he started talking all romantically again and I just couldn’t find the apt time to say it.”
“So what exactly happened?” Mukul and Jyotika asked their respective friend.
“Well”, Jatin started. “I had told my parents the previous day about her. I had also told them that I was planning to propose to her the next day. Mom was a little perturbed by the load of so much news in a half an hour, but Dad egged me on to do it in the best possible way.
I decided to take her to the outskirts of the city. There is this really beautiful lake about 50 km from here. I thought it would be the perfect spot to ask her the most important question of my life. So we met near the college in the morning. The weather was perfect. It was sunny but not very hot, a typical February morning. She came on time, although she looked a little restless. As always, I gave her a rose to cheer her up.”
“I will never be able to bear the smell of a rose for the rest of my life!” Shipra yelled. “‘My dear, I promise you that I will give you a rose whenever we go out together, I love you so much’”, she mimicked Jatin. “As if I needed another reason to break up with him!”
“And then”, Jatin continued as Mukul listened on,” we drove off to the lake. It took us about an hour and a half to reach there. We had lunch from a road side dhaba. I paid as always, I didn’t even let her touch her purse. We reached the lake where I had already made a reservation for a boat. I had paid the guy a little extra to make sure that the boat was cleaned well.
We set out into the lake. I didn’t want her to get tired, so I rowed the boat myself. After about half an hour, I stopped. We had calm, serene waters all around us. A gentle cool breeze was blowing. It was the perfect setting for a date.
She still seemed a little restless. I asked her if she was ok. She said she was. I started talking about how beautiful the setting was. She just nodded. I told her that we should come down here more often as it was such a romantic spot.”
“I felt like slapping him if he said another thing about romance”, Shipra told Jyotika. “Is having a relationship just about being romantic all the time? I wanted a more mature guy, who would have meaningful discussions with me about our future, not someone who just kept harping on about love!!”
“I wasn’t getting any kind of reaction from her”, Jatin continued, “So I decided to jump straight to the main topic. I took the ring out and hid it in my hand.
‘Shipra dear’, I said. ‘We have been seeing each other for almost an year now. You know almost everything about me. You have been my strongest support over the past few months and I love you very much. And today I am here to ask you if you feel the same way about me. I am here to ask you if you are willing to spend the rest of your life with me. Because I know that I would like to spend my life with you. So, Shipra Jain, will you marry me?’I asked her offering her the ring”
“What was her reaction” Mukul asked Jatin
“What was your reaction?” Jyotika asked Shipra.
“I was stunned”, Shipra replied. “I was such a shock that the words just fell out. ‘WHAT!! NO!!’ That’s what I said. And what’s more, his words made me jump so suddenly that I lost my balance and fell into the water..”
“I was shocked by the answer”, Jatin said, sobbing. “After such good times together, how could she say that so rudely to my face? I was heartbroken. When I came back into my senses, Shipra was in the water, flapping hard to stay afloat. I grabbed her hand and pulled her back into the boat. She was shivering. So I took off my jacket and gave it to her. She said thanks in a muted tone.”
“I was stuck in there with him. Why did he have to say this on a boat?” Shipra said in a frustrated voice. “ Once I started feeling warm again, I pulled the courage to talk to him about it. But it was just a monologue. I told him how I was feeling, what the problems were, and why I had said no. But he just sat there, silent. He didn’t look at me at all during all this. At last, once I felt I had justified my decision to him, I requested him that we row back and go home. He quietly grabbed the oars and started rowing back.”
“I couldn’t utter a single word”, Jatin explained to Mukul. “It was as if the ground had slipped beneath my feet. I just wanted to imagine that all this was a bad dream.”
“Hmmm, I understand yaar”, Mukul said.
“It must have been awkward though isn’t it?” Jyotika Said to Shipra. “Poor guy wouldn’t have expected it to end this way.”
Shipra gave a fake laugh. “Even I thought that I had had enough of embarrassments for a day when Jatin’s phone rang..”
“Whose call was it?” Jyotika asked.
“Who was it?” Mukul asked Jatin
Shipra dug her face into the pillow and said, “It was Jatin’s dad. He said that he, Jatin’s mom, Jatin’s grandma, and Jatin’s sister were all standing near his car, waiting to welcome Shipra into their family..”
“OUCCHHH!!!” Both Mukul and Jyotika cried out in unison.