The everyday kind of romance

An acquaintance of ours passed away recently on account of heart disease – a gentleman in his late 60s. I have met him just a few times in the course of my married life to the OH, and he has always come across as a decent, calm person. In fact, his peaceful, no-confrontation nature and his naivete have been, many a times, fodder for talk in our family.

This gentleman had always been a passive, quiet and reserved person, never worldly-wise, always letting his wife take charge and take all decisionsΒ  pertaining to their kid daughter. He was someone who would eat when told to, sleep when told to, and get up when told to – I don’t mean to say that he was a hen-pecked husband – far from that – but he belonged to that generation where mothers and wives wouldn’t let their sons and husbands lift a finger around the house. Sadly, the wife passed away when their daughter was about a year or two old, leaving this gentleman with absolutely no clue of what to do or how to go about life. Worry about his daughter sucked the life out of him, and he developed a nervous condition. He soon began suffering from violent epileptic fits.

What happened after that was something straight out of a Bollywood movie. The gentleman, who had no relatives who could take care of the child, re-married. I know many of you might find that objectionable, but that is what happened. I am glad to tell you, though, that the man’s medical condition was not kept hidden, but the girl was told about it, and she entered the marriage willingly (largely out of poverty, but the two did grow to love each other, and she took care of him till the end of life.)

Then, a divine love story ensued. The new bride and the husband found their soul-mates in each other. She cared for him and his household, and nursed him through his epileptic fits to the extent that he completely stopped having them. She fed and played with and brought up the baby as her own – and the OH and his family (and, to an extent, me too) have seen this. The couple had no other child. The man’s child grew to love the lady as her own mother, and till date, loves her the same way. When the daughter came of marriageable age, they chose a suitable groom for her and married her.

The gentleman, as I said, had always been known for his soft-spoken, naive ways. No one knew much about him as a husband, except that he and his wife were happy together, living alone in their house on his limited pension, the daughter visiting them from time to time with her sons. The lady, on the OH’s visit for the funeral, sobbingly told him of the happiness they had known together as man and wife, and it touched me deeply.

She spoke of how she would sometimes feel too lazy to go on her daily walk (she is a diabetic and suffers from high BP), and her husband would motivate her to take care of her health and push her to go. She spoke of how she would return home from her walk often to find a neatly-scrubbed platform in the kitchen and the dishes washed, her husband grinning at her. She spoke of how she and her husband would enjoy playing the ancient game of pallanguzhi on hot afternoons, squabbling like kids over the moves. She spoke of how her husband would withdraw his pension on the 1st of every month, and then call her from his favourite mysore pak shop in town, informing her that he will soon reach home with a box of the sweet. She would wait eagerly for him to arrive, and both of them would pray together before eating the sweet – month after month after month.

She spoke of how he would often surprise her with gajras of fragrant jasmine – he always bought two, one of which he would place at the feet of the gods in their pooja room and the other he would hand to her, saying, ‘For you.’ She spoke of how he would get angry when she wouldn’t let him buy something he badly wanted to, and would head off to a bus stand nearby, where he knew she would come in some time to fetch him and coax him to come back home. She spoke of how he would painstakingly separate the coils of mosquito repellant from the box they bought every month, because he knew she couldn’t do it on her own. She spoke of how he would, in his own little ways, take care of her and protect her.

She spoke ofΒ  these and many other such instances, all of which the OH and I found incredibly sweet.

“Both of us were very happy with each other, in our own world. We were enough for each other,” she said. And that much was evident from their conduct towards each other, to everyone around them, without their saying a word.

I think theirs was one of those beautiful old-age partnerships that RM wrote about. Whatever be the reasons behind their marriage, there was love and happiness in their home, which was ‘home’ in the real sense of the word. They were one of those real-world made-for-each-other couples who warm the cockles of your heart when you see them together.

There was warmth between them, and lots of sweet, romantic, old-world gestures that I find utterly charming. I doubt they even said ‘I love you’ ‘to each other or called each other ‘sweetheart’ or ‘cutie pie’, but there was romance between them all right. Candlelight dinners and couple massages and walks on the beach are romantic too, but this is the simple, everyday kind of romance that is, I think, something else altogether. It is the romance intertwined with the minutest of one’s activities on an everyday basis, so full of genuine love and affection that chores do not seem like just chores. It is such everyday romance that makes every day of life special. It takes my breath away each time I witness it or hear about it.

The lady is now trying her best to gather the pieces of her life together, and strength inside her, and learning to live life on her own. She wants to live with her memories of their beautiful, full life, and I wish her all the very best in doing so.


40 thoughts on “The everyday kind of romance

  1. Hi GND,

    I know I am late by a year and initially was hesitant to comment but then I could not stop myself..
    This is close to my heart as my grandmother was married to my grandfather under similar circumstances 55 years back and unfortunately he passed away recently, but they always lived like this.. Till the last day of his life they teased each other, he did whatever he could for her and she was the most dutiful wife who brought up the child like her own.. I always derived strength looking at their relationship, they perfectly understood each other though the circumstances under which they got married were very different…Very well written
    Reading your post today bought tears to my eyes…


  2. Beautifully written GND. I have always believed in small joys, it doesn’t have to big surprises everytime. It is about how you brighten up the days that are pretty much the same. Loved this one πŸ™‚

    May your uncle’s soul rest in peace…


  3. Thanks for stopping by my world. The love you talk about in this post comes from a deep place of respect, trust and duty to one another, the cornerstones of a successful relationship. it remind me of so many older couples i know including my parents and in-laws.


  4. Yes.totally agree.its the small everyday things that shows the love and concern u have to ur partner and despite so many years of living tpgether if that love is not jaded then that is love-forever i guess.ur post and RMs post makes me want for that love for us too


  5. …and know what? I find it incredibly cute and beautiful that men used to bring ‘jasmine flowers’ for their wives back in the day! I really want to experience that feeling of being handed ” jasmine” flowers, you know? The ones wrapped in a large banana leaf? I’m done with the bouquets!


  6. I loved this post, TGND! I could absolutely picture the couple in my mind and I could FEEL the love they had for each other! How adoringly beautiful! I wish the lady much strength.

    PS: I did not find it strange that he remarried. Infact, I was happy that he did not keep his temporary illness from the girl or her family away and came clean.


  7. To be frank, I was ticking off a list in my mind to check if I am in a similar relationship now. Yes, I am evil that way :mrgreen:

    The story is so heartwarming TGND. Thanks for sharing with us.

    P.S Whats with the new themes every now and then πŸ˜›


    1. @Visha

      If you are evil, so am I. πŸ˜€ As soon as the OH told me what the lady told him, I pounced on him with ‘You never bring me jasmine flowers!!’ πŸ˜›

      You are most welcome.

      PS: Just experimenting. It’s fun. πŸ™‚


      1. πŸ˜€

        I have lost the count of times I have told Zack to get me jasmine. I always tell him he is not at all the ideal husband they show in the movies 😈


  8. When you read something like this, you think, Oh the world is all right. We all can survive. πŸ™‚
    When I was reading this post, I was imagining Geet and Myself. I was imagining both of us doing all those small small things to make each other happy. I don’t know why I do this, but it fills me with warmth. It makes me thankful for her presence in my life.
    I hope the lady finds enough courage to live on memories for the rest of her life.
    Thank you for this post.


    1. @Amit

      Exactly. Such stories make us believe in goodness, in people, in true love and compassion. They make us feel that we will survive. That is the major reason I put this post up. And I felt that it was a story worth telling.

      The OH and I do these little things for each other, too. We enjoy doing them, and love seeing the smile that they bring on our faces. πŸ™‚


  9. i am quite not sure what to say.. let the lady have all strength to move on in life.. she had come in his life making wonders and now he is gone..
    when ever i read about or see such couple, i just want to fastforwad my life, and see how i am going to be with old hubby( of course i will also be old then).. πŸ˜€


  10. When I read this post TGND, it warmed my heart and to tell you the truth chocked me a bit too… Hope everyone finds this everyday romance and love… it is not rare but often less talked about and less thought about.


      1. No TGND, it is there. That’s what I was saying.. it is not considered romance by many. When you hubby understands something without saying or carries the handbags which he knows will be difficult for you to handle, I believe that is romance too…


  11. TNGD.. I am quite not sure how am I feeling after reading this. It definitely is heart warming to read about their story and to know how they both were soul-mates in their own way. But it shatters me to see that he is gone and she would have to live alone. Let God give her all the strength to withstand this tough time.

    Strangely, I didnt feel wrong abt his re-marriage. As you said, he was much dependent on his wife and would have had a tough time, not knowing how to raise his kid. God was with him, he found this aunty who was his turning point in life. I would have felt the happiest, if not for his sad news. May his soul rest in peace.

    This everyday kind of romance is what I would like to call as the mantra to a happy wedding.


    1. @Greenboochi

      Yes, it is rather sad to see the lady alone now. She is still finding it in herself to pick up the pieces of her life, and managing to stay alone.

      I am glad you understood about his re-marriage. All of us have our own reasons for doing the things we do, some of which might not be acceptable to others.

      Thanks for your good wishes.

      Yes, it is such everyday romance that makes a marriage truly a wonderful one.


  12. Amazing the way you put this.. It is exactly what I have with my Lois.. and more… some take a look when you get the chance.. I am going to follow you.. You see with a sixth sense.. and are able to translate! πŸ™‚ Awesome


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