Like a flowing river twists and turns in its course, there are events that take place in our lives which take us to new emotions and experiences. On the 8th anniversary of our union in marriage, we looked back at the 8 defining events or experiences which led us to where we are now. Shedding light on the right eight is the perfect opportunity to reflect on where we started from, what we have been through and what we are heading towards. Come join us as you read through the octagon of such defining episodes.
Freshers party meet up
Just like the joy a freshly blossomed flower feels upon meeting the perfectly fleeting bee in the quest of gathering more honey, the first meeting for us was a turning point no doubt. One can always question who the ‘bee’ was and who the ‘flower’ was, or whether the bee was in pursuit of ‘honey’ or was just being ‘horny’ – let us leave some room for speculations. That aside, sometime in July in 1999 when all the undergraduate freshers were welcome to a reception arranged by the University of Delhi (India) – was surely a defining moment in our lives. Only greetings were exchanged and the names were known – with a glimpse of more delightful sightings in the subsequent student days!
The trip to Rajasthan
No we didn’t know at that time or before the trip that the best way to gauge compatibility of a couple was when they travel together far from home or their comfort zone. Time and again, it has been proven beyond an iota of doubt that this litmus test stands valid every time you travel with your partner, spouse, friends, family. Three of us were supposed to venture out from Delhi to the royal state of Rajasthan, towards the eastern borders of the India. At the last moment, our third friend had to back out due to personal reasons. We never told him that ‘two is a company, three is a crowd’ – it just happened so that he had to pull the plug at the eleventh hour.
Faced with two options either to cancel the trip or to go ahead with it – we decided with the latter. There was a really genuine friendship as the foundation between us that led us to hop on the bus from Delhi Bus Adda (Central Bus Station) and head towards Jaipur – our first destination. From Jaipur, we travelled to the deserts of Jaisalmer and unknowingly then, wrote our names in the dunes to leave mark of our trail that continued long in future.
The incredible India-aahhh!
As we both claim and vouch for the fact that the time we had spent during our undergraduate days in India were the best times of our lives. The vibe and vivid colours, the dust and the dramas, the harsh summer and the charming winter, the Bollywood movies, the roadside dhabas (eateries), the curry and the butter chicken, learning French together at Alliance Francaise de Delhi, India, the eventful life in the university campus and the experience of staying on our own in the capital city of India was by itself the catalyst to lay foundations for strong relationships. Now we look back and think that if we could really survive on our own in Delhi during those times – we can survive anywhere happily. Because Delhi delivers the best.
The long distance
All good things come to an end and so did the stay in the delightful Delhi which opened the unforeseen chapter of long distance relationship which saw Shehzaad returning to pursue a career in Dhaka (Bangladesh) whereas Tanusree stayed back in Delhi to pursue higher education. In the absence of social media and mobile phones, somehow the feelings remained. Once you set off for a long journey far from home, you put on warm clothes and feed yourself well to keep you warm and full for the long distance. Similarly, we had experienced many a beautiful memories during the Delhi days which kept us warm in anticipation during the period we were apart. Later, Shehzaad moved to UK to pursue his MBA and the distance became longer. Nevertheless, it was that turning point of our relation which tested the resilience of the respect we had shown towards each other and to the relationship.
Tying the knot
Certainly another important event but honestly we were always under the feeling and emotion as if we had been married for a long time. During many intellectual exchanges, we used to even question the necessity of signing on a piece of paper. We surely understood that there are certain social and legal norms which one has to abide by. Other than this, getting married to each other neither ended anything for us nor started anything fundamentally new. Neither it meant that all the fun of being a bachelor was diminished, nor we felt that being married meant we have to be bogged down with responsibilities and the worst of all – have to have children just because we were married! We started off with writing our names in the dry desert sands of Jaisalmer, signing on a piece of paper was just the reinforcement of that pledge to be together.
Building the nest
Different folks have different jokes. For some, marriage unites two families and it united countries and kingdoms in ancient times. For us, we just wanted to be on our own together. So the episode of living under the same roof shaped the relationship in a way which was not always rosy and without hiccups. It rather was eye-opening in many fronts. The very fact of living with the person you courted all along, suddenly to have found him/her sleeping (or snoring?) next to you may be detrimental to your expectations but that is reality. Whatever is left after that are the true feelings.
We started living in our cosy green apartment in Dhaka for only 6 months, enjoying our own house-keeping, grocery shopping and the cooking. In every part of every activity while building this nest shaped us differently from what we were before living together as a married couple.
We both being ruled by the planet of the fleet-footed Mercury, astrologically implies that we are not meant to be rooted in one location for too long. So much so that moving to the UK to call it ‘home’ was another defining event of our relationship. Tanusree moved in Her Majesty’s great island to pursue her PhD and Shehzaad shortly followed suit. London being the capital of the world opened up new challenges and new experiences to test our resilience as individuals and as a couple.
Being based in London meant that we could expand our love for voyage and discovery on both sides of the Atlantic. Every new place we visited, we could see ourselves under a new light and a new setting. That not only rekindled emotions and feelings but reinforced some chemistry which sparked in early days of courtship when we spent days getting to know each other. Having travelled together more than 35 countries and counting, we look forward to the 35th anniversary of being together and hopefully having seen this wonderful planet with its full diversity and fervour.
Shedding light on these eight events, we really want to thank those who just love us the way we are, loved us from very beginning and still are. We thank those who parted ways since we also realise that life is too short for being ordinary and being coaxed into the norm of ‘the mass’. Finally, we want to thank the readers of Onetimefashionista.com for taking the time to read through our wonderful experiences.