As she appeared across the lawn, a shadow falling on her face, making it impossible to decipher her expression, I wondered. What was it about her that made her so dear to everyone she met? And yet, why was she hated so much by almost everyone at some or the other point in the course of their association with her? I suddenly realized I could never really understand her. She was an enigma to me.
I had been with her for far longer than I deserved credit for. I would always tell her everything I ever had on my mind; she would invariably be there for me, listen patiently to all my talks. I observed everything she did or said. I always tried to understand what she meant to achieve by every action of hers, and that has been one of the major sources of my understanding and knowledge of her thoughts and personality, however little that might be. We would talk endlessly on almost every topic there was under the sun. We would agree on some points, argue on some other. And eventually I would quit arguing with her, because it was like you could never win over her. She always had the last word. Not that I ever complained. She means the world to me, as much as she does to all the ones who always gave up in front of her like me.
She was a ray of sunshine on the horizon; a real delight to be with. There was an aura of happiness, wholesomeness and contentment about her, that lured everybody into its grasp. She was a picture of beauty; beauty of body, mind and soul. She could turn all your worries into nothing, and amplify your joys manifold. She had an inexplicable look of satisfaction on her face – to me it seemed like that of knowing everything yet revealing little. She could always tell what you had on your mind, but would never make you uncomfortable with unnecessary prying and prodding into your affairs. And yet, you would suddenly feel yourself bound to tell her all your worries and travails, as if she had a magnetic grip on your mind. She would understand everything you tell her, and would follow it up with such careful and sound advice, as would make you feel like your problems never really were of any consequence. Such was her effect on people that it sometimes baffled me into believing that she practiced black magic. But as I said before, I never really understood her. I just revered her for all that she was.
She was as much a mystery as Bermuda Triangle could never manage to be. Her eyes constantly lived in a dream. Her words went far deeper than they would ever appear to the listener’s mind. Her exquisite face was a brilliant cover to her true thoughts and feelings. But her clear hazel eyes revealed something she could never hide – pain. She hid her pain with her perpetual smile and joyful demeanor. But she had her dark days too. I never knew what caused her to be so affably happy at times, and yet inexplicably weird at other times. On normal days, she would have a splendid countenance. There was a ring to her voice, a shine to her smile and a rhyme to her actions. She would sing and dance her way through work, and at the end of the day, would recount the day’s events to me with full spirit. On those days, I felt such a rush of happiness and contentment throughout my veins that I could die of it and still not mind. But on those few days when she was weird, she would be very difficult to put up with. She’d brood over every single thing, take offense on anything even remotely untoward, and in general, present a picture of dissatisfaction, quite unlike her true self. It was of such days that I was dead scared. She formed the very thread of my existence; I could never bear to see her out of sorts. I would try my best to pacify her, mellow down her moods, try to make out her wishes and fulfill them as best as I could. Yet I managed to do a very poor job of it all. Why was it so difficult to understand her, yet totally unthinkable not having her as a part of my life? I think I knew the answer. Only I wouldn’t admit.
To be continued...
(Read the second part here and third part here.)