Monday, December 25, 2006

Ex – Friend

“When Bipasha can be a friend with Dino why can’t you?” I joked.
C’mon I have never refused to be a friend with either of them, Rajat said laughing.
Now don’t get off the track, you know exactly what I am talking about.
Rajat for sure knew what I was talking about because this conversation was now going on for more than an hour.
He again met Shivani today and he has again made a mess of the situation. He got totally drunk, fell down on the dance floor and he didn’t even remember when and how I carried him back to home.
This wasn’t the first time such a thing happened, 9 out of the 10 times he has met Shivani after their breakup, he has always created a situation where he has embarrassed himself along with her.
And yesterday night it was the worst, and the reason as everyone in the party later talked about was Mayuresh, Shivani’s new boyfriend.
It was now over a year that both of them broke up with 2 attempts from Rajat for reconciliation.
When they were in love, they were really the talk of the town. Sometimes you see a couple and you say they are really “made for each other” and that was with both of them.
Their relationship lasted for a year, they started off with petty fights and which at last grew to a big one and it all ended.
What went in between them, nobody knew for sure but the gossip was that Rajat was pretty possessive about her and would always want her to be with him and not talk to other guys. In the initial days of relationship he was fine with whatever she was doing, wherever she was going, he had no complaints but later he became more and more possessive, would keep on telling her not to talk to some guys, to dress up in a particular manner and not to dress up in other way.
Shivani also never seemed to mind the things he would say initially, she would love to dress the way he wanted her to. She liked to be preached by him. She knew that all he was doing or saying was because of the reason that he loved her so much and she used to enjoy being so special to someone.
But later on as he became more and more critical of her ways, it started pinching her and at times she started to argue about not always telling her what to do. It used to result in small fights but either of them would come up and talk to other and everything they had fought about was gone.
But the day they broke up, it is said that Rajat said something really bad (something about her character) and that was the end. She couldn’t take anymore; she would have forgiven anything but him talking about her character. She realized that everything he said was out of temper, but she wasn’t ready to let him go on those grounds. That day might just have been the triggering point of the things going within her for the past so many days.
The relationship came to an end, for 2 month none of them talked to the other, didn’t even face each other but slowly Rajat started missing her a lot. He tried to talk to her but she wouldn’t, she wouldn’t take his calls either. But one day he could get her to talk to him in private and all she said was “it is all over between us and there is no love left within me for you”.
He was mad, mad like a dog. For next 15 days he rarely came out of his home, wouldn’t eat, wouldn’t do anything but shed tears whenever he was alone.
Lastly when I came the third time to talk to him, he said “how come can she forget me? How can she say she has no love left for me? All that love of her for me was fake? Doesn’t she miss me like I do?
“I guess it is very easy for her to forget me, and if she can forget me I can also forget her, I won’t die without her”.
Listening to him I just wondered, was he right? Is it really the case that he only has been yearning for her and it has been easy for her? If both were truly in love then she should also had been in a bad shape and would try to contact him (some part of me just wished that she would call him and both can talk and sort things out).

I just sat by his side and listened, I knew once he vent his anger he will become bit normal and it was really essential for his recovery to shout or curse like that, to say whatever comes to his mind then. I never saw him in such a bad shape.
I spent next 2 days with him, took him out of the house and tried to cheer him up.

He started to recover but again whenever he used to see her the same old feelings started to grow within him (he said he would forget her, but he knew within himself that he can’t do that even if she has).
Another 3 months passed and he was up again and ready to go in front of Shivani. He told this to me and I rejected it outright. “Please don’t do that Rajat”, you will again get hurt. “Just forget her and move on”.
“I can’t forget her”, you know I love her and when she is in front of me how can I forget all those things that happened between us, how can I forget that we both loved each other so much.
“You don’t love her you loved her” and if you feel any comfortable then just talk to her like any other person, don’t talk to her about love or anything like that and I am sure she would respond if you talk to her in that manner. Just try to be friends, if that helps.
But Rajat never listened to me. He got his chance after a few days when they were together onto a picnic with other friends.
During the entire trip he kept on following her and once he could get her alone, to talk. He told her that he wanted to get back and questioned how she can be so hard. How she can not remember him when he remembers her moment?
She was much milder in her responses this time.
“Look Rajat, whatever happened between us was bad, I do realize that and things shouldn’t have gone to that extent when we were really in love” but then things took a wrong turn, I guess we were wrong somewhere or our love missed that extra something.
I don’t blame you completely for what happened; it was the fault of both of us. You never understood and I couldn’t make you understand.
I know what you went through; I know how hard it must have been for you. But believe me it wasn’t any easy for me. The only difference between you and me had been that I couldn’t express the pain, the anguish the way you did. I was also in love with you, I also missed you a lot but I realized that I can’t end my life at that point and I had to move on and so I did. I moved on, you might say that I was hard or heartless but I would say that I was just that bit stronger than you.
And now I suggest you, you too move on. Move on with the life, there could be lot in store for you; you just need to move ahead in life to find that out.
Going forward let’s just be friends, let’s forget what happened in the past. It would make life easy for both of us. Take care of yourself and if you need me sometime I would be happy to be there as a friend.
That was the last time she had such a long talk with him.

Even after Shivani’s talk, Rajat couldn’t come to terms with the fact that she is no more in his life and would never be.
Nevertheless he tried to come out of the big mess he was in. He tried to get his life back on track. But whenever he would meet Shivani, within a group of friends or see her at college he couldn’t control his emotions.
She would always say hello and ask him the usual questions but he wasn’t pretty comfortable with ‘friend’ thing.
Whenever he would meet her inadvertently he would bring up a topic of their past and would popup the question of their getting back.
Probably all these actions of his did nothing more than making Shivani’s decision firmer.
He would make comments amongst his friends about breakup and girls being heartless whenever she was around.

“What are you thinking?” My voice brought him back from his stream of thoughts.
“Nothing”, he shrugged.
I just don’t know how to handle it. I try my level best to come over that past relationship but it keeps on coming back. I just don’t know what to do? Honestly I myself don’t want to live my life this way and for sure don’t want to create problems in her life.

Is it really hard for a guy to get over a relationship then a girl? I never thought that way. As others I was under the impression that it must be real easy for a guy and must be too difficult for a girl. But for sure I was the witness to a situation entirely different.
Probably being friend with your ex is not what guys are best at, whereas girls might be handling it pretty well, why?

Shivani handled the breakup well, came out of it and moved on to a new relation. It was easy for her to consider Rajat as his friend probably because she was able to totally detach herself which Rajat couldn’t do. The way I saw it in Rajat’s behavior I was pretty sure that he would never be able to consider Shivani as just a “friend”.

But that night’s actions of Rajat, did something good for him, probably that was the last nail in the coffin of their already dead relationship. Though he did behave in the worst possible manner but he, after seeing someone else with Shivani got the message loud and clear, that it was all over.
The one thing that I had been trying hard to make him understand, Shivani had been trying to make him understand and probably he might himself be trying hard to understand but couldn’t, was clear to him in just one sight of her being with someone else.
And the way he behaved after seeing Shivani with someone else, probably that was the last outburst (that would have been necessary).

After that day I never made him understand anything, I guess never again he had a talk with Shivani but he just understood. He got hold of himself and the situation around him.
And he succeeded in getting his life back to normal.
Never again he tried to contact Shivani, instead if he would saw her, he would just walk away.
Unlike a movie ending they could never get back again. After 6 months Rajat went to Delhi to take classes for MBA entrance and got enrolled himself into MBA after a year of preparation.
After 3 years we had a small reunion, he came down to attend the party. And as we were enjoying the party, Shivani walked up to him (he knew that she was engaged now and was going to marry in 2 months time), “Hi Rajat, how are you?”
He was taken aback for a moment seeing Shivani in front of him.
“Hey, I am good. Heard that you are engaged, congratulations”. And before she could have said thanks, he moved out from that place uttering “excuse me” to the air.
Even today he wasn’t able to consider her as a friend.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Get tested, it's in fashion

I heard this line sometimes back on a TV show.
A new york based designer Sanjana Jon brought the Miss Universe 'Zuleyka Rivera' to India for the AIDS awareness campaign.
I wouldn't stress on why to get tested, as I am sure anybody reading this would be well aware about HIV/AIDS (If not, then there is plenty of information available online or watch the movie 'Phir Milenge').
I just want to endorse this line for all of those going in for sexual relations with new partners and also those already in a relation.
One of the way to do our bit is before you are going to marry it is the best that both the partners exchange the HIV certificates.
Getting tested before marriage and exchanging certificates shouldn't be seen as disrespecting your partner or doubting his/her integrity but rather as a caring gesture towards your partner. Nobody would like to pass on any disease to his/her partner, whatever it might be.
And being educated and knowing about the disease so much, this is the least we can do to spread the awareness about the disease.

So my request to all of you getting married talk to your partner and "Get tested, it's in fashion"

Friday, November 24, 2006

Zune: The New Tune

I had always wanted to get an MP3 player (to be specific an IPOD), but as I made up my mind to get an IPOD I went around the net trying to know what exactly is an IPOD. With IPOD not being so prominent in India, it wasn't very clear to me as to what all an IPOD can do apart from playing music. I got quite a lot of information about it on the net and then also came to know how crazy people in US are about an IPOD. But then I also got a news about MS new product coming up in the market called 'Zune', which was said to be the competitor of an IPOD. It took me a while to decide why I would prefer a Zune over an IPOD.
Apart from IPOD and Zune also there are a hell lot of good MP3 players available based on your requirement and after having a look at all of them it became confusing for me. Once I decided what I really wanted from an MP3 player, Zune became an obvious choice for me (off course it's brown color was also one of the major factors). For an entire month or more than that I followed the news and views as to how Zune is bad and how an IPOD is better. But still I went with Zune for the following reasons. 1. Plays MP3, wmv, wma (and that's the most I would need to play) 2. It has got Radio, which is not there in the IPOD (I don't know why IPOD never gave one) 3. 3 inch screen which makes viewing the videos a pleasure (I never thought videos would look good on a small screen but they do on the Zune screen) 4. Zune is also WiFi enabled (though there isn't much of a use of wifi as of now) but still I place my bet on MS to give me a lot more from that WiFi in future. 5. Lastly, I am an MS guy and looking at their past track records I can very well say that Zune is going to be much more than an MP3 player in future. Only thing I would ask MS is to concentrate more on Indian market for Zune where IPOD is still not something to shed blood for. Thought I should post a few pics of my Zune (off course Brown). Enjoy!!

Sunday, September 17, 2006

The Incomplete Love Stories

The summers seemed too hot this time round but at 2 in the June afternoon you can’t expect a cold breeze. It was not the scorching sun that was the problem for Vivek; it was that she hasn’t returned, while her tuition class time was over 1 hour ago.
But she didn’t have a clue that someone is waiting for her in the scorching sun and that just of glimpse of her would make him happy.
Aakansha was beautiful without doubt and the best part was she was as much innocent as she was pretty. She was one of the classmates with whom I hadn’t talked much but whenever I did had a short chat with her, like others I too was mesmerized with her voice. She spoke so softly that at times you really had to put your complete attention to what she was saying. She had a charm that anyone would fall for it.
And Vivek wasn’t an exception, he liked Aakansha very much as several others in the school but she was such a different type of girl that nobody dared to talk to her about any stupid thing.
Lovers in the school never mattered, not even anyone in the class, any tensions which were there were just because of lovers in the same section. You always have the school house rivalry, class rivalry and then you have section rivalry.
Any girl who belongs to commerce section no other guy from other section can talk to her (forget about flirting) and also forget about guys from junior classes (they just can't dare) or anyone else looking at the girl in that section (it always use to end up in someone getting hurt badly).
So that was the case with Vivek also, he never bothered if anyone else liked Aakansha or not, he was just bothered it shouldn’t be someone from the commerce section (and certainly not any of his friend). But he was pretty much doubtful about a few (he never knew about the ones who never talked explicitly about their love for her).
When the schools started after the summer vacations, every one in the section was new, no one knew the others in the class.
“Welcome students you are going to form the class 11th of 95-96, so let us begin the introduction”, this was our class teacher, madam Savarkar.
The introductions started, some had been in the same school for past few years and continued, most of us had come from other schools and joined fresh.
Guys were happy because there were many beautiful girls in this batch, anyways commerce section always boasted of beautiful and average (academically) girls, the arts section also used to have beautiful girls (many a times much more in number and much more beautiful) but then it was a common conception that they are the dumbest girls around and one may date any of those girls but would soon get fed up (and these findings were based on the experiences of our seniors and were not completely baseless).
And nobody talked about science section, barring a few exceptions science section guys were always like a person lost in the desert trying to pursue a mirage, and those sections were termed as dry areas among the boys circle and often those guys tried to hit on the girls of other section but they all knew their limit. Nobody in science section wanted to get into a fight or any ‘lafda’ because of the syllabus that they had to cover in 2 years.

While madam Savarkar stressed how important this year is for us but everyone sitting in that class knew very well that this can be the year of their lives, they can enjoy as much as possible this year because as soon as you land up in the 12th, you are not spared for a single minute. It becomes so very much difficult to enjoy life.

The first semester started and for the first two months it was difficult to communicate to the opposite sex. Guys and girls both hit off with their groups and only talks that went on that time was about knowing the particular girl or guy well. But this time round the class was much more vibrant and much more active (as was the talk in school).
As soon as the first tests were announced the entire class came in together to help out each other; guys exchanging notes from the girls and girls getting the possible question list from the guys.
By the time first inter house competition was announced (which was a debate competition) the awkwardness between the classmates was over and yes we were all friends.
When you are a student then also you have different facets to your personality and different responsibilites to cater to. You have a class unity, then a section unity, then you have a house unity and then you have a school unity (when inter school competitions are held). Nobody knows how we are able to cater to so different needs within the same place but the relationships are never soured because of maintaining so many commitments and so many divisions. The house rivalry ends when we leave the debating arena or the play field and then once we are in class we have the class unity. Its complex to explain but easy to maintain.
And between the regular classes and so many school activities there is that love thing going on within several hearts. And when you are in the high school that is the first time you start getting mature and start to understand the real meaning of the term relationship. Before that may be all the relationships are just attractions but from here onward everyone starts to think of their life ahead, though nobody talks explicitly but within the heart every one is so scared because of the board exams and without even mentioning they know the importance of those exams in their future life and subsequently everyone starts to know the importance of relationships.
So the love stories started to bloom and the first real one that we heard of was in our seniors section (the current 12th class batch) but you can’t dare to discuss a senior’s love story within the school. So everyone wanted some or the other story to start in their own class, even those who secretly admired someone but never wanted anyone to know about it they also wanted something to talk about.
Shamita was a short height girl and very much out of the league of normal girls, trying everything out from drinking to smoking. She had a group of her own and though everyone knew all about her but she had never been caught by the school authority.
Her dark complexion suited her and her complexion coupled with her attitude made her deserving to a few.
Sameer hit on her and to our amazement succeeded in the first attempt itself. Sameer was all about fun, he was the type of student who least care about the studies, he was well built and was the captain of his house’s soccer team. He wasn’t too handsome or a hunk and he never cared, he liked to get involved into all the wrong things that went around the school and no one ever thought this relationship can materialize.
Nobody knew how both of them hit off, may be there carefree attitude towards life got them together, may be their same disliking got them together but yes everybody could see it that Shamita was madly in love with him. The girl who didn’t even used to talk straight face started liking Sammy madly. And there were days when Sammy used to show us that she can do anything for him and that was for real.
And was he really in love with her? The people who knew him well never believed that and the betting was as to how long will that relationship will last, 3 months being the max quoted. And yes Shamita knew about such rumors but suddenly she didn’t seem to mind anything people said, she even stopped listening to the girls of her group.
They had an unusual relation and used to share things which other couples would never think of, they used to go to watch games together (and not movies) they used to share the smoke (not the food), both couldn’t continue talking without using foul words. She loved to watch him practice soccer, and the first time the class saw her taking down notes, not for herself but for him. What others say never bothered either of them.

Vivek’s first semester grades were an indication to the teachers that again this year the commerce section of their school is going to top the district.
Somehow in the final exams he moved to second spot, first spot going to a nerd in the class. But still his grades were the best for past 3 years of school history in commerce section.
When he started liking Aakansha, nobody knew for sure but rumors were that when they both started the accountancy tuitions at the same place in the 12th class.
He never needed tuition but the teacher insisted on coming just to make sure that he gets the top rank for the school, obviously he wasn’t charged the fees. He used to help out other students in the tuition classes and in the mean time honing his skills. May be there he started helping out Aakansha also and slowly and gradually started liking her.

Nobody knew about Aakansha much not even her friends but only word was that she was raised by a single parent, her father had passed a few years back and so she was too sincere and serious in studies.
11th grade got over and yes the entire class had a very good time. Nobody had complaints, games, studies, love affairs (there were many other in every section), heartbreaks, school fights, picnics, excursion tours, expulsions, the class saw it all and the good thing was that after all the mazaa, masti everybody made it to the 12th, some with good grades some just passing but nobody seemed to mind the grades much. The real game was to start next year.

Defeating all the previous bets Shamita and Sameer continued their relationship and took it to the next year. People stopped talking about them, sooner or later people loose interest in a stable relationship.
After the first three months into the final year the news was in the air about Vivek loving Aakansha, news was among the boys circle only and to my amazement I was the last person in the class to know about it. Once the news was out everyone was following Vivek. He was the first one to enter the school now and the last to leave after Aakansha has left. He used to meet her in the accountancy tuition class and followed her to the economics tuition, he would wait for her outside the tuition center. If he even would get a glimpse of her he would be so happy. The way she talks, what she eats, the things she would participate in, he knew all about her. He used to look at her through the window, across the table in the school canteen, at times would follow her to her home without her knowing.
He could have done anything for her but hurt her, may be this was the reason he couldn’t ever talk to her about anything else than the studies. His friends and others in class made snide comments about him.
He wanted her to remain in front of him always, and that he can spend as much time with her as possible. He was desperate to talk to her, to let her know his feelings but couldn’t do it.
Initially everyone treated this new fever of Vivek as an entertainment piece, everybody would make comments on him, for sometime he was the main discussion point as to where was he seen waiting for her, what stupid thing he did to grab her attention.
But the real shock came in when the first test results of class 12th came out. Vivek got the worst ever grades, he was placed 20th in a class of 36. And in economics he barely passed.
The fellow students and friends noticed it then, that how serious this affair has gone for him. Advices started pouring in for him. Madam Savarkar was also baffled by this performance of Vivek and tried to talk to him about his problem, if he had any. It was not only Vivek but she was always very helpful when it used to come to her students, we had seen her saving 2 of our classmates from expulsion, helping us in every possible manner and taking our concerns to the school management, so we all had our share of fun about the way she talked but everybody respected her. But he told her that he was facing some problems at home and couldn’t concentrate and will pay attention in future.
Three months in the new class and Sammy was again in the news, the bets went wrong last year but the basis of the bet was turning out to be correct. Sammy was dating another girl now, Nina, a junior from the 11th grade to be precise and this time the entire boys group knew it as soon as it all started. Girls weren’t having any clue about it because he was keeping this affair secret and wasn’t seen with her new girlfriend in the usual places.
Nina didn’t had an idea about Shamita and to Sammy’s relief for the first six months Shamita didn’t had any idea about the other girl either.
And the boys group was again having a good time and now the bet was how soon will Shamita know about Sammy’s infidelity.
Winters started and with the winters the tension of pre-board exams also started, they were scheduled for the first week of January soon after the winter vacations were over.
Vivek showed no signs of improvement despite everyone around him suggesting to concentrate on the studies.
When you are friends or batchmates then you might make fun of others you might enjoy others precarious condition at times but there is a genuine concern for that person in every one’s heart. Every one wants every other classmate or friend to succeed, so with this concern everyone in the boys group tried to talk to Vivek but it all seemed useless.

It was a Tuesday morning, it was chilling and we all had just come out of the room after the English paper and were discussing it and comparing the answers. As soon as Sammy came out of the room he ran towards the terrace between the comments of few, “which one you are rushing for?”
The answer came in within 10 minutes, while our group of 7 guys was standing and discussing what will come in tomorrow’s economics paper Shamita suddenly appeared, “Have you seen Sameer?” I can’t find him. I don’t know how his paper went.
He just went towards the terrace replied Manish instantly (who was very good friend of Sameer), as she left for terrace we just couldn’t help it but laugh out aloud on this act of Manish. ‘aaj marega sala’, Manish said laughing out loud.
We all wanted to be a witness of that scene that would happen upstairs but none of us wanted to take the blame so we decided not to go upstairs.
We all were curious as to what happened there, and the next morning as we were entering the exam room, many people asked Sammy the same question. “What happened yesterday?” we saw Shamita running to the terrace yesterday and then out of school and she was very upset (the later part was very much cooked up), he didn’t replied then but after the paper was over he joined us and started with friendly abuses, who sent her upstairs? You people are mean, you won’t get girls so you would not let other’s relation flourish. Tell me who sent her? And after long arguments as to who sent her or why nobody stopped her from going Sammy told what happened, in which everyone was interested.
As soon as Shamita saw both of them together she started shouting as to what was going on. He kept his calm until she stopped screaming and something went into his head (he says he didn’t know why he said that) he blurted out Shamita meet Nina my new girlfriend and Nina this is my ex girlfriend Shamita.
And after that the furor kept on going for another hour until they saw a teacher coming upstairs.
As he ended his story there was a huge uproar in the hall where we all were gathered listening to his story, the passersby stared us but none of us could stop laughing after listening to what Sammy had done.
“But then which one remains with you?”, Manish asked. “Hell none, he replied indifferently, I don’t know what is the problem with these girls I told Nina that she is my current girlfriend but she also broke up and went away. This innocent question and the way he was telling these things made us all laugh more, it seemed it was least of his concern that his relationship has ended only problem was that he will have to start afresh. We all knew he was a different make, not the ones to stick around. This story made several rounds of school and till the time we passed out it was fresh in every one’s mind.
On the contrary Vivek was having the worst time of his life when the results for pre board were announced he failed in not one but 2 subjects, economics and commerce along with 2 other students of the class.
The school had a rule not to let any student sit in boards if they didn’t cleared pre boards, madam Savarkar intervened again and all 3 failed sat for a reexamination and somehow cleared.
We all were now very worried looking about Vivek and many in the group suggested that he should talk to Aakansha, or they do it on his behalf. Vivek didn’t agree to any of that, he just said that he would improve and pass the boards and that we shouldn’t worry. At that time he knew something about Aakansha which none of us knew and came to know only at our farewell party.

The 11th grade organized a farewell party for us as was the tradition in school. Farewell parties are always so good and still no one wants any farewell. If the life allows then every student of 96-97 batch wanted to relive the entire year because everyone knew that this might be the last time they are all together.
The party started on a good note and was going very well, the party was organized very well (but not as well as we did last year every one in our batch would say). We all were sitting together today irrespective of the sections, all the sections science, commerce, arts all of us were seated side by side and sharing jokes, experiences and future plans.
Suddenly a guy on stage who was conducting the whole event announced couple dance for the outgoing batch, anyone can ask any one to be the partner.
And then we all understood that something which till then only Vivek knew.
Initially everyone was a bit reluctant to go on stage, asking others to go first. Then suddenly somehow everyone came onto me, I stood up and asked my very dear friend Monica for the dance, she complied and we were the first on stage and slowly people started joining. Suddenly Manish who was dancing behind pinched me, “look there”, me and Monica we both looked towards that direction he indicated.
Ameen, a science section student was standing in front of Aakansha’s chair and was asking her to accompany her to the dance floor and to our amazement she happily joined him on stage.
A few of us just froze there (may be one of the reason was how did we miss that), we searched for Vivek, there he was standing in a corner looking exactly where she was dancing and his eyes were just sending us the message, “I knew that already”.
We took off from stage to join him but for once as I forgot about Vivek and looked at Ameen and Aakansha, they looked beautiful together, the best couple I had ever seen in the school. The way they were dancing, the way he was talking to her, the way she was smiling back, they just looked perfect.
After a while we all joined the stage again for a free form dance and dragged Vivek in forcibly, he danced with us for a while and then he left the stage with tears in his eyes.

For the next two months the batch of 96-97 didn’t had anything else in their minds but the exams, helping out each other in subjects, finding teachers wherever possible to get the answers to the questions (which nobody listened in the class), the teachers were as much supportive. Madam Savarkar helped us in every way possible, she had never seen us so sincere (but then she told us later that this happens with every batch).
School showed a 98% result and commerce section an excellent 100%, the batchmates whom we always thought might not even pass, they got excellent grades and the ones whom we expected got lesser than expected but more or less it was a satisfactory result.
Vivek passed but with bad marks (we were just happy for him that he passed at least), Sameer passed with second class (which was the best he could expect from himself). Shamita passed with good grades but never talked to Sameer again, but you could see her looking at Sameer whenever he passed in front of her (she couldn’t stop loving him).
Aakansha passed, but after 2 months when the results were out, we got news that Ameen left for Delhi to join engineering coaching. What happened between them no one knew, but for sure she never married him.
A few others tried to keep their love going after the school, tried to remain in contact but none of them from that batch could keep their relationship alive.
There were many other love stories like that of Shamita, Vivek, Aakansha in that batch, too sweet and some too good and for most of them it was the first time they experienced love but unfortunately none of those love stories could find the finishing the people expected when they started.
But those incomplete love stories must still be in many hearts…..

Sunday, August 13, 2006

the One and the Other one

When you are in love it so often happens that you want the time to stand still forever and you can't think of any other person in your life then the one you are with at that time.
What is it with love that people turn crazy? they can't think of anything or anyone else? and most importantly how they rule out the possibility of anyone else walking in their lives or that one they are with walking out of their lives?
I am not going to provide the answers to those unanswered questions as I like anyone else in the world don't have a clue about any of those questions.
But the question that probably has risen in most heads and hearts at one or the other point of time is "Is he or she 'the One' we were searching for?" and 99% of the times when you are with that person the answer to that question is 'Yes' and once you have broken up the answer to that question is flat 99% 'No'.

"How can a girl be in love with 2 guys at the same time?", Shivani was giving me that inquisitive look like I had a ready answer to her question, and that I would be out with it as soon as she was finished asking it.
She was talking about her friend Shweta but the question wasn't specific to Shweta alone, the question she really wanted to ask was can a person be in love at the same time with more than one person?

Shweta and Shivani had been friends since the time both moved in together in the same room. They were studying together in the same class and they didn't had much of a choice when they moved in together. The school had allotted them the same room and with them was another roomie named Shalini.
The only common thing between all three of them was that the names of each of them started with the alphabet S.
The similarity ended there as they had different views about life, studies, relationships and any other thing above the ground and below the sky. Nevertheless they were able to keep on going with little fights at times, why you used my cosmetic types.
And when you live together inadvertently you become friends (even though you don't share much in common), after the day was over they used to sit down and gossip about the day. Who was with whom? who has got a new cellphone and how and what the xyz couples had been doing and where?

Shweta was having a long time relationship with this guy named Saurabh who was currently in Delhi completing her MBA, both have met at some common friend's party and from the first time they hit off. They had all the fun and vows between them before both of them left to advance their academic career. But yes they had all the plans of marrying once he was settled and she has completed her graduation which seemed like some 3-4 years away. This was the short story that Shivani knew of Shweta.

On the other hand Shivani never had a so called boyfriend ever (as far I knew or as far as the class knew) till 3 months back when she and my friend Vikram fell in for each other. I was a friend of both though Vikram was a much better friend of mine and she was like any other friend in the class but since the time they both started their relationship, Shivani grew much closer to me and she would share things about their lives with me and would often ask me for advice (though I am very bad at it) . Even when both would go out for movie or dinner they would compel me to come along. It was a good relationship with both of them, I never felt odd even when I used to barge in between their talks and they never took it as an offense. At times she would come to me with even such silly questions as what do you think Vikram will like this dress she would say taking a full turn displaying me her new floral dress, and I would comment very indifferently, I don't know.
But she won't leave until I would say it looks great and Vikram would like it like anything and then I would have to make sure that I let this thing known to Vikram so that he should notice and appreciate her dress. At times I thought that she was way too crazy about Vikram and may be she should act sensibly at times.
But sense prevailed me at such times and I never actually said those things to either of them. The result of all this was now I was as good a friend of Shivani as of Vikram.

When she wanted to discuss something she would discuss anything (she never cared if it concerned me or not) and today was yet another of those times.
Recently she came to know that Shweta was having affair with Rahul, a guy from the arts section. Though she had a hunch for quite some time as she had seen them together and many of her classmates had asked if something was going between them (when you enjoy commenting about others then there are always people around you waiting for you to falter once) , but even after this Shivani never believed that something like this can happen, she thought may be both are from the same school house (which was blue) so they are planning some house activity together. She had only one reason not to believe what she was thinking and that reason was big enough for her and that was, that she knew Shweta was already in a relationship and she was sure that relationship was still alive as she saw cards kept on pouring for her and calls from her boyfriend every now and then.
And even Shweta herself sent him a gift this valentine's.

"What do you mean you love Rahul?", Shivani was screaming at her when she told her about the affair.
Shweta, are you out of your mind or what? how can you love Rahul? If you have lost your memory then may I remind you that you are already into a relationship (for Shivani if you have vowed to marry each other it is a relationship or else it's an affair) with a guy named Saurabh, who is in Delhi and you guys are into a relationship since last 2 years.
"Vani, don't scream yaar", Shweta said irritated.
I know everything, I remember everything. I remember Saurabh very well, I know he is my first love, "what do you mean first love?" Shivani cut in, you don't have first, second or third love in your life. Either you love someone or not and when you love someone that's the end of it, you can't love someone else.
Don't talk crazy Vani, it's not like there is a rule imposed like that or it is a punishable offense to do that. You can't help your heart, if it likes someone you can't help it and you can't counter it with any arguments. And see Vani, I am sharing this with you as you are my good friend, I need you to understand and not scream, if you won't understand then it will be hard for me.
I'm sorry for screaming, Shivani replied taking in a deep breath, but it's like it is a shock for me, I have never heard of anything like this before and never even thought of anything like that in my dreams. True I had friends who had many boyfriends and I never liked them for changing their boyfriends but deep down in my heart I never felt that they were wrong if they dumped one guy and went on to pick the other one, may be the things didn't worked between them or may be their relationships were not meant to be. But yea I must say what you are doing is bizarre. You can't just have relationship with two guys at the same time, wait!! Shweta are you suggesting that now you are in love with Rahul and no more love Saurabh and that you are going to dump him?
No, No, No Vani, all I am saying is I love Rahul, that in no way means that I don't love Saurabh anymore. I am in relationship with Saurabh for last 2 years and we have had some very good times, he had given me a lot in my life and he means a a lot to me.
Shivani wasn't getting an idea as to what Shweta was up to and she thought may be she herself doesn't know what she is talking about. They had this argument for another hour or so, Shweta kept on trying to make her understand and Shivani on the other hand kept on trying to make Shweta understand that what she is talking is absurd and such a thing can't happen and she should sit down and think for a while about that. After an hour or so when they both were exhausted with arguments they both went to bed, it was already 12 o'clock and luckily Shalini was sleeping over at another of her friend's room and may be that was the reason Shweta brought up the topic today.

This happened like a week back and since then Shivani was feeling restless, she still couldn't come to terms with what Shweta had told her the other day. They haven't talked about it since that day but Shivani had seen Shweta with Rahul and had just walked off from there without even acknowledging Rahul's greetings.

When she came up to me, she said she wanted to talk about this with someone and she didn't felt it proper to talk about this with Vikram (god knows why). How can this happen, how can we love more than one person at the same time? She kept on repeating this again and again to me. And after an hour when I was sincerely hoping for Vikram to come from somewhere so that I can be spared she said and you know what? "What?" I asked in a dejected tone.
You are not going to tell any of this to anyone, not even Vikram, "OK" I replied.
Shweta just don't have a romantic relationship with Saurabh, she also had a physical relationship with him, and not once as she has told me. Now you think how horrible it all seems.

So that was the part that was eating her up in the entire Shweta, Saurabh and Rahul saga. In addition to romantic she was also having a sexual relationship with Saurabh and now she says that she loves Rahul.
I don't know for a fact but I truly believe that when you are in the same situation as other and something wrong (only the wrong part) happens to other, you start relating it to yourself and may be at this time Shivani was doing the same thing and felt much bad then if she had taken Shweta's case at its face value and as an isolated case.
Somehow I talked her out of that for the time being and I rushed towards my German class.

But the question Shivani asked kept on ringing in my head, at any point in our lives can we be in love with more than one person? and is that right or wrong?
For myself I knew the answer to the first question just that at that point in time I didn't wanted any argument with Shivani so I just didn't put forth my point.
Yes off course we can be in love with more than one person at a time that is what I believed and I guess we all have seen that happening some or the other time, with someone or the other. It's just that people at times are so hypocritical that they try not to see the real thing.

As Shweta said most of the times you can't have arguments with your heart, you can't make your heart understand the logics of the world. The answer could be (as many people say) take control of your heart. Agreed but sorry as the majority of people I am not aware of that art. I can't control my heart and I think so can't most of the people in the world, if people knew that art then there would not have been any complications in this world.

Personally I didn't felt there was anything unusual about what happened with Shweta, she loves a guy whom she is not with right now. There are lot of guys she meet everyday and her boyfriend is not around for her to share things she would love to, she can't go out on dates like her other friends who have their boyfriends with them. Whatever may be the reason but she found someone she can be happy with right now, with whom she can share things, with whom she can go out and have fun and may be that new someone is also caring and more loving then the boyfriend she already had.
What do you do if you find someone who you think is better at that time then someone else you are already into relationship with?
Just that a new one comes in your life your heart just don't start hating that other one, he must have been caring and loving too that's how you choose him or her in the first place and now the new one is caring and loving too, so what you do? Do you leave the previous one?
So often married people get hooked on to relationships outside their marriages, they have not only found the one but they are also committed to the one, but still their heart wouldn't stop beating, it won't stop loving someone else if it finds the other one special and in such a case they can't leave the one they are with because he or she also forms an integral part of their lives and not to forget they also love them.

Breaking up is always hard, when you spend time with someone and that too in such a close relationship, you just can't accept the fact that he or she will no longer be part of your life or they will end up with someone else. May be that is not love and may be that is still love, you want to have both the persons in your life. Leaving anyone of them is going to hurt you.
And does having sexual relationship with one or the other or both have anything to do with it? Not necessarily, sex is just one part of a relationship and if even having a relationship with someone couldn't stop you from loving someone else then sex can never alter that decision of yours.
The point is that many of us are in love with more than one person in life, it's just that we don't let that feeling overwhelm us. It's always a probability that there are more than one guy or girl around you, you admire more than one, you get one of them and other one walks into your life you start feeling the love for the other one too, you just don't want to loose 'the one' for the 'other one' and also you don't want to rule out the possibility of the love of 'other one' just because you are in love with 'the one' and that's the real truth, that's the real thing that heart wants. If we don't let that feeling take over, it's not because its wrong its just because we are afraid, afraid of what people around would say, afraid of what any of them come to know of the other.

Is it right or wrong? No one knows for sure, if one is totally driven by ethos and society implemented rules that person would reject such a thing outright, like Shivani did. But then at times that feeling is so strong that we like to go with it without thinking of the consequences, we like to enjoy what we have in our hand.
Nonetheless it complicates our life, we want the happiness in our life and any way it comes we try to go for it. But sometimes or the other reality strikes us and we might think that we made a wrong decision.
If we go any further then the truth is that we can never say for sure that 'the one' we have chosen is really 'the one' for us.
Every relation has its good times, tough times, bad times and even times when we start feeling that the relationship is stale and definitely not the same as it started. And this is the time we start looking out of the relation we are in and that's when things start getting real complicated.

Should we get involved in such a relation? Nobody is sure as it is not up to us to fall in such a complicated situation.
Shweta was enjoying her life with Rahul, she was getting the love and care she longed for since the time Saurabh was not with him. She wanted that life should continue like that. Rahul should keep on loving him, she should also have love of Saurabh and most importantly both should not know about each other. Call it selfishness, call it meanness or whatever but this was the true thing that her heart wanted and the only unusual thing about it was she was one of those persons who have heard and complied with what their hearts really wanted.

Things continued the way they were for another six months and as the way she wanted, either of the guys was not aware about the existence of other. But Shweta understood in just 2 months what mess she was into when she had to manage both the relations. Now whenever she was saying those three magical words to anyone of them she was confused, confused that is she doing something wrong (as Shivani has told her). and confused about who she really loved and if such a situation comes where she has to choose one whom she would be choosing. "Can't I have the love of both of them?" every heart beat of hers kept on asking that question.

But life is really full of ups and downs and surprises, they say "time heels everything". Not exactly that time heels everything but yes time at least changes the situation for you at times. After about six months with Rahul, surprisingly things started changing at Saurabh's end, what changed Shweta never came to know but yes, Saurabh was getting away from her for some reason, the calls to Shweta has lessened, where earlier he used to call at least twice a week now it was like twice a month, less conversation, less gifts. Their relation was really less intimate now and for Shweta it was a welcome relief. The guilt feeling she developed after listening to Shivani and may be some other people started to vanish slowly. He would call rarely and she would not ask why and he also would be happy that she is not asking why. The long distance relationship they were trying to maintain so hardly was stale now and Shweta was thankful that it was the same for Saurabh too. And she was almost certain he must have got someone else in his life but she never asked and he never told. Even now the thought of Saurabh being someone else's didn't sink in very well in her heart, she still thought (and wished) that he was hers only.

She was enjoying her time with Rahul like she never did. As earlier she was now into one relation but with the other one. But again like any other relation, this relation of hers was also slated to go through all the phases that any other relation of any other person would. The school was going to end in another month and her relationship with Saurabh already had. None of them said anything to the other, none of them asked anything and the best part was none of them was complaining.
In short, if Shweta was in love with more than one person at a time then Saurabh too must be doing that.
The day she explained this to Shivani, Shivani just smiled and remarked "good for you" and went off. But now I could see that in Shivani's talks that she has come to terms with the fact. The scenario she was rejecting outright some 6 months back she now at least thought that it was possible (though she still wouldn't have wanted her to fell into one such situation ever).

So Saurabh wasn't the one for Shweta but do you think Rahul is the one for her? Shivani asked me with mouthful of ice-cream, we were out of a movie (a Sharukh Khan crap) and Vikram was also with us, who was by now as much aware about the whole story as I was (girls might always ask you to not to tell it to others but they are the first ones to tell it to every other person they meet), Vikram had the least interest in that story and never even asked me how did I come to know of it.
Though he loved Shivani as much but at times he used to get fed up of her and her stories (as it happens with any normal guy who has to keep up with his girlfriend). If I am around he would make some excuse to leave and come in a while, leave me to listen to her and would always come late and to my agonizing looks would remark "thanks brother" with a wink.

Shivani got the answer to her question sooner than she expected and not from me but she herself was a witness to it.

Once the school was finished Rahul was off to Pondicherry to pursue a degree in French and Shweta planned to go to Delhi to join fashion designing. And this time she never took those vows she did earlier with Saurabh, she had been through all of this before and she didn't want false commitments this time. She was well aware of the fact now that it's hard for her to say that Rahul was really 'the one' and she didn't want to fell into the trap that life laid for her the last time. She now knew that though you can be in love with more than one person at one time but the sad part was that you can't have all of them in your life and in her case none of them.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Software Loyalties

In one of my job interviews I was asked a question which in today’s software world is having much more weightage than the salary negotiation.
“How can you guarantee us that you would be loyal to the company?” the gentleman interviewing at once realized that he has put up the question in the worst possible manner, he at once regained the composure and continued “let me put the question in other way how long would you stay with the company? It is just that you know now a days attrition rate is so high in software industry”.
Who is the better person than a developer who himself is looking for a change to understand what the attrition rate is in the industry today.
One good thing that has come out of the high attrition rate, for the candidates is that they have now more bargaining power not only in terms of salary but also in terms of working environment, hours of working, perks, rejecting any bonds and whatever the candidate can think of.
There has been a time when companies out there have taken the full advantage of the candidates (when the market was not so hot) and made them sweat for 12-14 hrs a day and paid them peanuts and in addition to all this made them sign bonds.

They say “what goes out comes back” and this is what is happening now. The market is hot companies ready to pay any amount to the candidates with right skills and even ready to hire candidate without any skills. For every potential employee there are at least 4 companies standing out there with offers beating each other.
So is it wrong for the candidate to take advantage of such a situation?
How long and for what reason should a candidate be loyal to a company?
What factors constitute loyalty towards a company?
And most importantly if a candidate is loyal is there an assurance that the company in question would also remain loyal to him when the market would (god forbid) would not be so hot?
When my friend Rajesh joined a new company after quitting his old company in just 6 months of time, I asked him was there no work in that company or was the other offer too good to resist?
Rajesh when joined that company was on bench for first month, this is the time when any employee joining a new company is eager to prove himself. Being on the bench is the worst thing that can happen to a developer who has always kept on working for more than 10 hrs. It’s a sort of retirement and when he starts to enjoy it then there is work for him to do.
Work he was assigned to after one month was a short in house application (that’s even worst then the bench as it always is driven by the whims and fancies of the bosses).
He somehow managed himself and in 3 months time of working on that project made a name for himself and he was put onto an ongoing project which was about to finish in a months time, he was assigned ad hoc tasks and without knowing the system he had to work on it and by the time he started to get a hang of the project it was over.
In these six months he realized that market is paying much more than what he is getting (though it is always a feel of every employee but in today’s world this is the truth), he put up his thoughts together.
To get an increment I had to wait here for another six months and that too he was not sure about the percentage that he would get, he had heard of a 30% max and when he started trying out he got 3 offers in 7 days of time with the max offer being 70% more than his current salary.
Work was the last thing on his mind, he has already seen it all over here, things can’t get worse than this, if he has to sit on bench only or has to work on some low level projects than why not do it with a better salary at least.

Yes there are many loyal employees in this industry too but I would rather call them satisfied employees than loyal.
Until and unless an employee is satisfied or stuck up due to some reasons of his own there is a slim chance that he would stay with that or for that matter with any organization. And there is nothing wrong about it.
Loyalty should not be wrongly interpreted as an employee sticking to an organization even when he is not satisfied.
An employee might be serving the organization for numerous years but he might not be loyal, he might have been trying to get out of the organization but due to some or the other inabilities he might not have been successful.
There might be employees who went off and came back in the organization, they also can’t be considered loyal most of the times for the simple reason that had they put faith in the company previously they wouldn’t have left in the first place.
An employee can also not be considered as loyal if he has been threatening the company every now and then and keeps on getting his things done, such an employee can run out any time when the company stops playing by his rule.
Also if an employee is always finding faults with the company and not doing even his bit to improve the situation he can’t be considered loyal too.
Then the big question is what constitutes loyalty of an employee towards his organization?
The answer is simple; don’t expect an employee in this industry to stick with the same company forever. The companies should see if that employee in his tenure has delivered honestly, when he is in the organization has he done things to improve the face of the company. If the employee has been vocal about the problems within the company processes or the manner of operations and time and again the employee has suggested measures to improve it that’s the most loyal employee that a company can get. If a company can ensure that every employee that is working is at least 70% satisfied in the company, it will also ensure their loyalty for the company.
The tenure of an employee is immaterial when it comes to measuring loyalty. At times the organization presents no reason to the employee to remain in the organization, its better at such a time to let the employee go and benefit some other organization which is in the real need of resources.
The days are gone when people used to start with one company and they used to retire from the same company. It’s a free world today and every employee has got a lot of options in his hands in all the sectors, let the loyalty be for what the employee has been for the company and not how long the employee has been with the company.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

The Balancing Act

This is the 12th one this year, I screamed. All Hell has broken loose it seems, people have gone mad or has there been a virus attack or what? Why is everyone so hellbound on marrying? Never ever have I heard of so many of my friends marrying in the same year.
Never ever have you been in the age in which you are now, Shavak retorted. It's nothing unusual, normal people do marry around this age and if you and me are not marrying then our families are to be blamed, he continued with a chuckle.
You will see our hairs will turn grey in another year or so and we won't be getting girls to marry he said with a laugh this time.
Hell!! Who wants to marry anyways? It's so scary, I don't think that I am yet well settled or am in the right shape to marry and those friends of ours are mostly of the same age, how come they decided to marry?
C'mmon don't talk rubbish you know parents pressure, someday or the other you have to bow down to it Shavak shouted while picking up his helmet which was sitting on my television( I never knew why he would keep his helmet only at that place, I told him many a times not to but then he won't listen).
"Khuda Hafiz" he said and went out in the scorching sun.
After he went I threw myself on the couch, some match was going on the television in which India was not in a good position(no wonder). With my eyes on the television and my mind on the marriage thing, I started thinking,
"Is marriage inevitable?"
"Will marriage change us in any way?"
I knew the answer to the first one for sure, also I was almost sure about the second question too but didn't know exactly "in which way?"
I have seen my colleagues marrying, a few of my friends marrying.

For sure they have changed and some have changed drastically, even those have changed who have sworn by the vodka bottle, that come what may they are never going to change.
"C'mmon yaar, we have been friends since last 10 years with just a girl walking in, how can I change. It will all remain same, our parties, our outings and watching cricket too."
But alas!! such people have changed the most.
So is it right that everyone changes and more important is that change inevitable?

When my long time friend Vishal married some 8 months back, it was a sudden shock to him(don't talk about me I got many such shocks later). He went to visit his place in the weekend, parent were all ready with photos and all. Within 2 days of time he met 5 girls.
The questions from parents came "how was the girl?"
The poor chap replied with honesty "she was good" and promptly came the reply "so we take it as you are ready to marry her".
Hey dad, I never said that.
Why? Is there a problem? You just said you liked the girl.
Yes I did but I don't want to marry right now.
Now you don't give your father those sort of answers, even though you have started earning we still know what is right for you. So don't make a fuss of it, some day or the other you have to marry, so why not now? "Aur aajkal acche rishte badi mushkil se milte hai" (parents sometimes talk in such a way as if scarcity of good girls or boys is predicted in the years to come)

With such arguments and counter arguments lastly he relented and was ready to marry, nevertheless he was happy that the girl which was selected was very pretty and 98 out of 100 chances had he met that girl outside this 'shaadi' thing he would have liked her to be his girlfriend and may be later would have married her.

So in the end with grand ceremonies and all he was married, I remember his marriage because after a long time I had seen so many 'baraatis' (there were around 400) participating in the shaadi and by the time 'pheres' were concluded every dish in the non-veg section was finished. And yea I also remember his wedding because that was the first time I had to dance in a 'baraat'. I never liked the idea of dancing on the road but then for friends you have got to do things which you would abhor otherwise.
I started noticing the change in him after around 4 months of his marriage, we had hardly spoken at length in the past 4 months, firstly it was his honeymoon and then work pressure after coming back but then after all that settled down even now when he was not able to take out time, then it struck me.
I tried calling him a few times, we would talk for 4-5 mins, "how are you?", "how's work?" sort of things but it was just a formality. Even he would call me once in a while but our call still would be on the same lines. A few of the times when I called in the evening and his wife picked up I kind of felt odd, like I am invading their privacy. None of them gave me that feeling but just that a thought crept within me and I stopped calling in the evenings or nights.
Whenever asked about weekend plans he would have to go out with wife for shopping or to meet relatives or will have some work at home.
At times when we have met on some friend's party or function he would have to leave early and now no one could pursue him to stay.

So did Vishal changed? for sure he did but then why did he changed? And was this change inevitable?

When Robin married, a couple of months after that it became difficult for him to manage between office life and his married life. He had been working since past 3 yrs in our organization I would see him working for 12 hours on a normal working day and even when we would have asked him to leave he would keep on doing some or the other work (the initial work pressure, finished his social life and now when he had time he didn't wanted to go out and socialize as he wasn't in the habit of doing that now, same old story of a software developer).

Now after his marriage he wanted to leave after standard 8 hrs of work but couldn't, some or the other work keeps on coming as soon as he plans to leave. It became difficult, wife wanted his time his company wanted his time. The company didn't want him to change just coz he is married, if you were working 12 hrs a day till now the company would like you to work at the same pace now too. And after you are married you hardly can annoy the company, every person wants that job security whichever position he or she might be in.
Though Robin still used to finish his work but now the time that he used to spend in the company has reduced. He would seldom stay late unless the work is of critical nature. While in office he would get the phone call of his wife atleast 3-4 times a day, and then he would start worrying about the things back home.
No gas in the house, Groceries for the house, have to go for the tapestry today. Things started to happen in his life and his undivided attention that previously used to go to work and work alone was divided and may be slightly more on the house hold chores.
And after a while the pressure started showing on his work. It was not the same quality of work that he was delivering before, code with lots of bugs and logics implemented with so many bottlenecks, he would miss some obvious testing scenarios in his code (previously he would help out others with them). Your lead and managers don't give you much space to breath and this low quality code from Robin was unacceptable.
He had hard times then, he was trying to balance his life between office and home but he was a novice to begin with in this thing called 'marriage'. Friends and colleagues around him would joke upon the fact that marriage has changed him completely. The person who wouldn't go out with his friends even if work was pending had to at times leave when his wife would call him up for some urgent pending work at home.

So why did Robin changed? Did he now gave less priority to his work?

Ruchika has always been the girl I always admired, whenever in office she meant business, despite her drop dead gorgeous looks and several males around making passes at her, her attention wouldn't get diverted. I wondered how. Not that she wouldn't have light moments but yea if they came as part of the tasks assigned to her.
So when she got married everyone thought that now she wouldn't be too long in the office (it so used to happen that girls marrying would leave the job soon in pursuit of striking a balance between their married life and office work) but as I knew her, I had no doubts that she would continue the work the only thing I had interest in was in seeing as to how a girl changes after marriage.
As the time passed by yes she did change she would have to rush back to home at times, would have to take a day off at times (coz of some function at home) would get late at times and yea previously when she was always worried about her work and her weekends, that was now divided between her home, her husband, her inlaws, and office (you don't have weekends for yourself ever, once you get married).

The thing I liked was she was trying so hard to strike that balance, she would do things which she would have never done if she wasn't married, without any complains.
So yea when I saw her change it was like, may be it was a normal phenomenon after marriage.

May be there is a time in life when you are completely at your own, you work for yourself, when you are happy that happiness is yours only, when you are down and out you yourself would kick yourself up and get going. There are things that you would do for yourself, you are on your own, you like working, you like to have that separate identity of yours which you have created with your own efforts.
In short you love your life that way, without any bounds and most important even without anyone for you.
Marriage introduces a new person in your life and you are made to understand that your life is now not yours alone.
Yes things would change and you would change, even without marrying I can understand that now. You are habituated to things, to your surroundings, to people around you.
One fine morning when you wake up and see that world around you has changed, there is someone else with you now, sharing your bed and your life, you are no longer alone, you can no longer have that carefree and independent life, it must be a whacky feeling.

May be your slippers are not exactly by the side of your bed, may be your towel is not at the right place, things change, may be your morning tea which you used to make yourself is sitting by your bedside and it contains more milk then you are habituated to.
The first reaction of every person would be to revolt, you would like to scream and shout and do everything possible to show that you are not happy but then deep within the heart you realize, that new someone who has come in your life is yours and you have to live with him/her for the "rest of your life" (as they say) and you start understanding and start dealing with the things in a much civilized manner.
You start taking care of that other person much more than yourself (it may be an outcome of a fear that you have to get this new relation going or may be just a human nature) and may be the change becomes inevitable.

You change, you sure as hell do change, change for that someone new in your life, change to keep your new life happy, change in the fear that things shouldn't go wrong, change for the other new related people who have come in your life.
In which way your life changes? does it change for good or bad? these are tricky questions , it then solely depends upon the perception of the person. But nonetheless life starts teaching you some new lessons, to be patient, to work with people around you, the ability to understand, the ability to put your point across without hurting anyone (coz that anyone is now your husband or wife). May be you become more compassionate. Most important life slowly and gradually teaches you to strike a balance between different facets of your life. It is like you have gone one round up in a computer game and situations would be more complicated with every step you take in future.
The best way to play this game? the good or bad thing is that there isn't a standard way to do that, every person devices his/her own method to tackle the upcoming situations.

For a while the people you have known for so long takes a backseat and your attention is diverted towards those new people who have come into your life overnight. For a while you take those people for granted(be it your friends, your colleagues, your relatives or for that matter your company), that if they have stuck with you for so long and with all that you have done for them in the past, they would be there and understand you in this new situation.
And that comfort is the least that you can ask for with your whole life changing infront of you.