On my wedding day, I was nervous, fidgety. It was an arranged marriage. I was paranoid about changes marriage might bring. I would be going to a new home where I knew no one. I was too involved and attached to my family.
The chosen one fitted perfectly into the matrimonial standards, as he was an engineer by profession, employed and presentable, too. Isn’t it strange how two perfect strangers meet, feel an attraction for each other, agree to marry and spend their entire life together? Little do they realise what they actually want and how compatible they will be.
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Once we were married, a long conjugal life lay ahead with its queer twists and turns. After the initial euphoric phase, there were frequent talks about more mundane but important things: career, family, responsibilities. I was the eldest of three siblings, with younger brother and sister studying and my mother a widow. He was the youngest and pampered of five siblings, all settled.
There was a major difference in our outlook towards life. I was too serious and he was carefree and casual. The things which irked me never seem to bother him.
I had to support my family though not always financially, but by being with them, and he had to pursue his higher studies while working. There was constant strife within me as he failed to understand my priorities as the eldest sibling. How marriage changes your life overnight, I realised later. I was too sensitive to the needs of my siblings and was in turmoil if I couldn’t attend to them. The presence of a strong matriarch in his family made things difficult at times. This continued for some time; meanwhile my sister got married and my brother continued his studies. I had my own children now but deep within me, my sister and brother were always babies to me.
Life unfolded many cobwebbed paths that we trod together, often stumbling, at times falling too. There was never a major issue. The only problem was my involvement with my family, which required time and attention, as my siblings were young. My mother relied too much on me for all her financial transactions and household decisions. My husband and his family couldn’t understand the circumstances, but patience and perseverance resolved issues gradually with time when my siblings got settled and involved in their own lives.
He was always passionate about mountains and road trips. With kids growing, we started our trips to the mountains. The majestic beauty brought the writer in me alive and I derived immense pleasure out of it. I started penning down the experiences of each trip that we took. The detailed inputs about route, places to stay, places of interest came from him. This combination turned each journey into a beautiful travelogue. Either we were happily travelling or excitedly planning the next trip.
This is how the love and zest for life never ceased nor the mountain trails which keep calling us to watch the stars, moon and the mountains together. The countless colours of mountains beckoned, a privilege which nature has given to us to witness, marvel and be a part of. These trips always allowed us to forget the mundane aspects of life. We take long walks and talk our hearts out. Things which otherwise go unspoken have many times come out during these sojourns.
Related reading: The trip that tested our relationship
Apart from that, going to a new place, exploring it, connecting with new people has always been exhilarating.
The more we travel, the more intoxicated we are and it’s a blissful state of being. All conflicts resolve, as you are able to feel and experience life in a different realm. It’s a thing to be experienced, which people who love nature alone can understand or connect with.
How good it is at times to just do nothing and watch what breathtaking beauty surrounds us all around. The daily grind of life makes us all so weary and tired, at times confused, too, that we ignore the bliss of beautiful creation. My frequent hilly sojourns have made me understand this. The spark of awareness changed my entire way of looking at things. The joys of just looking at the stars, silent mountains, clouds have unraveled the true essence of life.