“Was It a Miracle?”
“Are you married?” asked one of my friends. “No, not yet” said I. “I have heard that you have”. “No, I say, no” was my answer. “OK! Are you interested in marriage?” said my friend, “I have a match for you, if you so desire”. “Well, I am ready”. “So we should go to theirs when you are free”. “I am ready when you are free, tell me and we go”. “No, you see and tell me when you are free”. “OK, then let it be on coming Sunday” I said. So it was decided. Time was fixed for us to get together and start for the concerned city, a big one in Pakistan.
On the fixed day, date and time, we met each other and started for our destination. It was almost 80 kilometers from my home town. My friend’s in-law family lived there. The meeting was arranged at his in-laws.
I don’t remember whether we were the first one to reach there, or they. We were made to sit in a large dining room; where of course there was no dinner but tea, yes, tea along-with cakes and cookies.
During tea, I was put a few questions by my would-be mother in law at that time. The first question was, “My daughter is doing a job. Would you mind doing the job, or what?” I said, “I won’t mind it, rather I am pleased that she would be with me to earn something for us”. A few more such questions were there which I forgot; I simply remember that she “my would-be wife”, at that time, smiled.
The meeting shortly after tea was over. My would-be mother in law and would-be wife at that time left the house first. I was invited at theirs. It was some two or three weeks later.
When we reached there, we were received by her friends. We were given a warm welcome, then lunch of course. It was a memorable event, though I don’t remember any thing particular but her friend taking me aside and asking me for my mailing address, which I gave and got my would-be wife’s in return. “You can feel easy and write to her, as and when you like” was her friend’s offer.
These were old days, years back; when there was no internet, no email system, nothing of that kind. One could read and write letters to each other.
The word “Romance” itself is very attractive. Whenever there is some whisper or talk of romance, the people are usually on their toes; to find out something of that sort, to listen to something of that sort and to see something of that sort. It is so fascinating and charming that regardless of the age; almost every one is interested in it.
“Romance” is every thing that can be imagined but not attained. It is totally imaginable but impracticable. It is a world of fantasies; one’s Utopia and one’s own world, where one rules in accordance with his desires and wishes, as “Walter de la Mare” has done in his poem, “Tartary” or “John Keats” in his poem “Kubla Khan”. We usually refer to “Love Affair” when we talk of “Romance”.
Without being a philosopher, or going deep into discussion, I would like to come to the story I have been narrating here. Our new contact with each other started now. I wrote her a letter; there was no answer. I sent another, the result was no different. I wrote in my third letter, “Perhaps, I am knocking at the stone-wall with no door to open”. There was a quick reply to it. And then, the things started happening, maybe I wrote five and she wrote four.
In those days, there used to be letter pads with beautiful colours and images. I remember, I bought blue papered pads with light images on them. In addition, I am good at art; I used to draw colourful flowers at top corner of the pad or at the bottom. So, it was an interesting series which continued for quite a few weeks only. Then one day, I was asked to send my mother to them to fix the day and date of marriage.
In brief, the date was fixed and preparations started. What I had to do, I didn’t know; but the people around me well knew that. One of them was my adopted sister, who got necessary jewelry and wedding garments. One of my friends ordered for invitation cards.
This I would call a miracle; a big one indeed. One of my former students came to me one day. It was almost late afternoon when he came. He put me the question, “I have heard that your marriage date has been fixed, is it right?” “Yes”, I said. “Well, do you know that this is an age of dearness? Have you prepared yourself for that??” “Yes, I know, we are going to do every thing in a very simple way; not with pomp and show” I said. “OK. But, perhaps you don’t know prices of things are rising sky high.” Saying this, he put some notes before me. “Take them, please. They are twenty thousand.” I said, “How should I take these notes, my son! How can I?” “You call me son and you refuse to take the money.” “Yes, I refuse because it’s our duty to spend on youngsters like you.”
“When the youngsters grow up, it becomes their duty to support the elders.” This was the answer, which I was unable to reply. I said, “OK, if you insist, I take half of them.” “No, not at all, you are to take the whole meager amount. And kindly don’t allow any one to manage for a car for you, and its decoration please.”
Perhaps, nobody would believe that the person I talked above, my former student belongs to “Sheikh” caste which is notoriously believed to be “misers”. But, it was a fact. He is still in contact with me. I remember his last words when he made me accept the money, he said, “Please, never mention this thing to any one, not even to me in future.” I pray for him and God has blessed him even more and more. He is running two factories now; in the past he owned only one and that also with a share of his younger brothers and sisters.
Now, years have passed. It looked to me great miracles in my life, bestowed upon me by God Almighty. And I strongly believe that God loves all and He takes care of us all. Do you also believe?