Saturday, 3 February 2018

This Day....That Year....

I literally went 😲 on logging in and finding the number of drafts that are waiting to be finished.  But then, it's so so very me.  A Gemini that I am, I go round and round, hopping from one activity to other, every single of which I love - enjoying each of it at that given point of time.  So that way, my list of hobbies & to-do things is just endless, and my mind might be in a totally different space every time you bump into me!  Hehe..

While I have been away, life definitely has changed yet again, taking me through different phases and altering and moulding me into a much better version of myself.  As I say that, there is an urge to write about a lot of other things; but I am trying hard to stick to the reason that brought me here this moment.

Sipping a cup of spiced tea, I got on to my set-weekly routine of checking Facebook on a Saturday evening for any messages.  And though I remembered this fact, there was a cute little picture that came up on the networking site as a 'memory' that made me smile.

It was this day 5 years ago that I took off from my Indian home ground to land on the foreign turf of  United Kingdom.  Just like they show in the movies, just like it happens with every Indian who flies abroad for the first time, my entire family was there at the airport to see me off.   Haha...sounds amusing isn't it, but there definitely were a dozen more families at the airport that day sending their young ones off.  And that is when these two precious little gems of my life, my dearest brother and sweetest little sister, who were trying to keep any emotional drama at bay, clicked this picture.  

All through the drill of finding a match for me, my mum had ensured to shoo away any proposals from prospective grooms living abroad.  Not that there was anything wrong with them, but the sheer fact that packing bags from one city to the other, travelling across India with my banker dad, had made her miss out on so many things in life that she just didn't want her daughter to go through the same.   She had missed attending most of her cousin's weddings, she could not be there for my grandfather's funeral, she missed out spending sweet but precious little moments with her loved ones for a major part of her life.  But as the saying goes - Man Proposes, God Disposes.  HE had different plans for me.

So, there I was, travelling with my brand new husband of 2 months who had been packed off on a deputation to Bristol from the aerospace company that he worked for.  As we rode the bus from London Heathrow to Bristol, the landscape alongside the motorway took my breath away.  Cattle grazing on calm, serene, endless green pastures.  Surprisingly bright blue skies on a wintery day with traces of white smokey tracks left behind by airplanes that had just flown across.  It reminded me of the then very recent game on Facebook called 'Farmville' and all the Enid Blyton books that I had devoured as a child.  Just as I was soaking in the beauty, a silly thought ran across my mind....Was Bristol a village too???  I always wanted to be able to get a first hand experience of things and locations, and so I had never read or inquired about the place.  And now, all I was wondering was if I would be able to adjust??  Would I find friends?  Would I miss my family?  And then I realized how far I had come away from them all.

But then my worries were short-lived as a little friend was already waiting for me right opposite the little studio flat that my husband had rented for us before we flew in.  A 4-month-old cute little bundle of joy, Haasya, along with her wonderful parents - who have now become an extended family of ours, welcomed us into the land that she was born into.  The feeling of having someone there, especially from the place that we belonged to, was such an instant comforting factor.

We soon embarked on our first shopping trip to the nearest supermarket, Tesco Extra, to buy a duvet as we realized there was just a mattress and nothing else.  It was 8 p.m. and freezing cold, & my husband had suggested sleeping with our warm winter coats on, but I was quite sure we would be frozen by morning.

That was the real beginning of my "married" phase with me enjoying every bit of the homemaker's role that I had happily donned.  

It amazes me as to how every single moment is flashing across my mind as though it was just yesterday.  Finding an Indian grocery store, buying the first box of mangoes, celebrating festivals in our own little way, feeling proud at the first flight of A350 - the project that hubby was called in to manage, the hot air balloon ride, the little studio apartment that actually became the most beautiful home providing beautiful memories, making merry like kids with my new found girlie gang, unexpected travel back to India for a bit only to return unexpectedly again, getting back to work, every bit of it has been so amazing. 

Five years have definitely been a roller-coaster ride with more of downs than ups, or probably it would be better to say that we have just been on a down-slide and the ups are just around the corner.

What has significantly changed though is the fact that - that day, I walked in with a man - my husband- who was just a little over a stranger to me.   And today, after having lived through the good and bad moments together, after having faced and survived situations, that stranger has become the core essence of my life.

And over these 5 years, the 'village' that I wondered if I would adjust to - the City of Bristol, apart from being so warm and beautiful in itself, has enriched us with so many fulfilling and learning experiences that it has now become our second home.  😁

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