‘Where are you from, Sir?’ the question made me turn away from the window to face my fellow traveler. It had been 10 days since I left Bangalore to visit the Valley of Flowers. I was on my way back and was deeply immersed in the process of recalling what all I had felt and experienced during the last week. Amazing scene of aarti in Haridwar, the dangerous life at Uttarakhand, the faith of pilgrims to walk 300 kms on foot from Haridwar to Badrinath, the flamboyance and generosity of Sikhs, a brief encounter with that girl who was trying hop on to a horse but was too frightened, so many things rushing into my mind as I get closer and closer to the monotonous life back home. But there was one thing which took a predominant timeslice of my hours. How come all the married couples align themselves in a way and start looking very alike?
I met a lot of couples during the journey and they all can be placed into 3 categories.
Type A couples are the ones who are very energetic and enthusiastic and want to see everything. They have been to a lot of places already and are planning to go to the rest of them. They love trekking, trying a different cuisine, talking to strangers and all kinds of different experiences. Most of the foreigners who travel to India belong to this category.
Type B couples are the ones who try to do all the things that Type A couples do either because it’s obviously cool to be a Type A couple or because they are friends with some Type A couples. They try to be talkative and adventurous but they fail because they apparently don’t want to do all those things.
Type C couples are the ones who don’t want to try the unknown paths because they are simply afraid of them. They don’t go out of their way to talk to strangers and they always always try to take as less risk as possible.
There is nothing great or wrong with being any kind of couple but what interested me was that in all the couples I met, both the persons belonged to the same type. I never met a couple where the man and the wife were of different types! I decided there is no way to say that like people got together, fell in love and got married because I knew most of them had arranged marriages. And common, in an arranged marriage, there is no way you can know what a person’s actual views about anything in life is, let alone what type he/she belongs to. So I came to the evident conclusion that the couple tend to become like each other and after some time somehow average out. How influential (dominant?) you are in the relationship actually plays a very major role.
May be. But that’s not the point. I know I’m a Type A person and I don’t want to become anything else. I would hate myself if after some years if I find myself to be a Type B or worse Type C! Since I’m mostly sure that I’m going to have an arranged marriage, how am I gonna find a Type A girl? What qualities would actually determine the type of a person? What if I want to go out and try some different theatre and she doesn’t want to miss the Kannada serial at 7.30? Oh my God, is there no way to escape this impending doom??
‘Where are you from, Saab?’ He must have noticed that I was lost in my own thoughts staring at the endless paddy fields of Andhra Pradesh, he repeated his question.
‘I’m from Bangalore. Where are you from?’.
‘I’m from Ujjain. I’m a cloth merchant there. What do you do?’
‘I’m a Software Engineer.’
‘Software Engineer? What do you do?’
I explained him how we have to instruct the computer what to do in its own language.
‘It’s own language? Must be very difficult! Good. Tanquah kitna aata hai? ‘
I didn’t get him. Tanquah?
‘Money’ he said, simultaneously signaling with his hand.
‘ Not much yaar’ I said, uncomfortable with the personal query.
‘Bolo naa saab. Tanquah achcha hi to hoga’. He didn’t let me go until I told him my salary.
‘Kya? Agar utna tanquah aata hai to abhi single kyun hai saab? Shaadi kyun nahi kar lete?’
A lot of things have happened since then and I’m not even thinking of getting married in the near future. But the simplicity of the concept in his mind still makes me envious of that bastard.