One girl was on the plumper side and had thick frizzy hair. She came from a small town in the south and belonged to a rich business class family. She was a jolly person with a loud laugh and an out going personality.
The other girl was from Mangalore, but had lived in Chennai for many years. She was slim with sharp attractive features and a soft voice. She conducted herself daintily.
How they came to be thick as thieves was a great mystery. But they remained friends all through school and college. At the end of our under graduation year, the first girl got married with great pomp and glory. She had a happy life with a good husband, lovely kids and was as jolly as she had always been.
The second girl, went on to do her Masters and then she took up a job in a private firm. Her father fell ill and became bedridden and the onus of looking after her brothers fell on her. She did not cringe from her duty. She worked for many, many years and she crossed her 40th Birthday. And she remained single.
Her best friend who had by then settled into homely complacency with grown up children and adoring husband despaired for her. She even tried to match make her husband’s bachelor colleague with this friend. But it did not work out.
Her smart friend would reply “I dont miss, what I dont know.”
When both the friends had crossed their 42nd birthday, the unmarried friend went on a long trip to her native town Mangalore. Before she left, she told her friend ,” I might have a surprise for you when I return.”
It was the month of May. The temperatures had crossed a 105 degrees Fahrenheit. The first friend’s husband had a massive heart attack and died.
A month later the Mangalore friend returned to Chennai and rang up her friend. She heard with aghast her friend’s husband’s demise.When they both had sobbed their hearts out, the Mangalore friend told her news.
“I got married” she said.
Do you know on what day and at what time, the second friend had got married?
On the exact day and about the exact time that the first friend’s husband had died!
We, the other classmates, who still keep in touch even after 40 odd years, heard the news and were surprised. We still wonder at the quirkiness of fate that had inter woven their lives like this, even though, like I said at the beginning of my story, ‘they were as different as chalk and cheese.’
As told by : A. Shakeela Banu. Chennai……. Written by Gulsum Basheer @ talkalittledo.