Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Golden Couple

We had gone to University together, then drifted apart as mere acquaintances often do. A decade later, we found each other on Facebook, and spent a few days discovering what the other had become. I really don’t know what he made of the person I am, but to me, he was one half of a perfect couple. Two good-looking, much in love people, each doing very well professionally. The photographs he posted on Facebook were almost idyllic– a tall, dark, even if not quite handsome man and his pretty, chirpy, well-dressed wife enjoying each other’s company in the most idyllic holiday spots.
They brought in the New Year in Bali. Went to Italy a few weeks later Spring. Summer was spent in the chill of an Australian winter. Hong Kong was where they celebrated five years of married life. To someone who hasn’t been to the movie theater in nearly six years, their life was something almost out of the world.

“Tanu and I spent the weekend working out ‘What If’ scenarios”, he once wrote as his status message a few months back, “and in the best scenario, we still got together. Pretty good going that.” I used to be addicted to constructing ‘What If’ scenarios, but every time I indulged myself, I emerged as someone quite different. Oh that someone be so satisfied with life as to land up just where they are!
“Tanu has left me and gone to live with God”, he wrote on Facebook on Monday. I read it, but the implication didn’t register till an hour later. It was not a sudden whim that had carted his wife off to the feet of a Guru, she had really and truly left the world. There are hundreds of messages of condolence on his Facebook page, his wife continues to grin impishly from her profile picture. But the Golden Couple is no more.
I left my condolences with the rest of the wreathes. But really all I wanted to do was scream ‘why?’
Had she been suffering for long? Did both of them know her end was near? Did all that love come because they knew they had to live a lifetime in a few years?
Or was her death sudden? A Love Story brought abruptly to an end Eric Segal could have scripted?

“Counting the minutes till Tanu lands back in Bangkok”, he’d written about a month back. “Too many minutes!” At that time, it seemed almost impossibly romantic that someone think that after five years of marriage- had I encountered the line in a book, I would probably have sniggered. Now I wonder if that was just his anguish at having a few precious moments snatched away from him.


Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

So tragic. But I'm glad they had the five years together and a chance to rediscover each other. Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all...

Mystery Writing is Murder

Anonymous said...

So poignant and sad... And so well described.

Helen Ginger said...

How sad. Even just reading your post gives my heart a catch.

Straight From Hel

Tamika: said...

Hi Rayna- nice to stumble across your blog.

What a tragic love story. I ache with you.

Chary Johnson said...

Wow. That was really profound Rayna. It had me thinking about my relationship with my husband. I try not to think of it but I suppose it is inevitable for everyone in a long term relationship. Great story.


Anonymous said...

wow. it's hard to be at this end isn't it? Death seems very close too, no thanks to social networking.

Rayna M. Iyer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rayna M. Iyer said...

@ Elizabeth - it was a fairy tale, but at least they had the fairy tale.

@ Fiona, Helen - it took me three days to get my emotions in control and put it down. Tragedies are hard to cope with, even if they happen to people you barely know.

@ Tamika - welcome to the blog.

@ Chary - that is exactly what I have been doing myself too. The decision I have now taken is that whatever happens, I am going to make sure we don't have any regrets. That is about all we can do, isn't it?

@ Rads - social networking does make it more immediate, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

Unimaginably tragic. A & I were in SB together.

Rayna M. Iyer said...

It was, wasn't it, Niru. Took me ages to come to terms with it. And that at a time when I was convinced I had reached a state where nothing could shake me up any more.


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