The first love letter that i wrote never reached its intended audience as it got rudely intercepted by my Ammi hazoor who just knew that i am up to something naughty. It was written on a pink page laced with scented cheap talcum powder just to add spice to my message as in those days i could not afford Eau De Toillete. Every word in that letter was scripted and reflected upon thousand times and dictionary was referred to every five second before I satisfied myself that the message I am communicating will have the desired impact on my Padosan i.e. she will rool on the carpet several times as used to happen then in Indian movies before kissing it .
The Padosan was a interesting character and a intetesting topic of debate among all the young dude in the age range of 13 – 18 of that time where each of us were under the impression that we are the only Rajesh Khanna of that Hema Malini’s life . Many years later we realised how wrong we all were - she was the ultimate vamp of indian screen who beleived in keeping everyone happy by showering cute smiles regardless of age and ethnicity and if we mis interpreted – as we all did – it was the figment of our dirty imagination. Falling in love those days cannot be simply compared with what happens today. The Ashiq of yesteryear was altogether in a different league as the amount of sweat, blood and tears one shed then simply cannot be compared with today.
Today in this age of “Texting” and “Skying” you are simply at the strike of finger away from communicating the pain of your heart with the lady in Red. The same text message with exact contents can be send to multiple recipient if you have more than “khatoon” who has enamoured you. In those days, having access to telephone was at any stretch of imagination as difficult as task as Khan sahib learning how to ride a bicycle. Normally in those selected Creme de la Creme families who had access to telephones, the dial used to locked to prevent us from mischeivious adventure and the keys were always dangling with the colorful “kamar band” of either dadi or elderly female of the house. If some lucky chap (and i was never one them) managed to book a date, the redezvous normally used to be the top floor or ” Chaggha’s ” in urdu of respective houses where the lady always maintained a very safe distance. Today the choices and excuses to find a tryst are multiple and varied ranging from fast food joints to art or aerobic classes or in certain cases it could be as blatant as “meeting with friends” who gender generally not revealed unless specifically probed by parents.
I makes me happy and sad when i cast my glance on yesteryears and remember those damsels in distress. Time knows no mercy – some of those who yesterday took our breath away bears no resemblance of how they used to be in past and is mere shadow of past . Some of them when i accidently bumped into has been savaged with time on account of financial, family, health or other domestic reasons. As you hear them haggling with Sabziwala “Bhai Aaloo kitnay rupee kilo laga rahay ho” in the neraby market, you realise the fickeleness of life. I am sure when they look at us now, the feeling will exactly be reciprocated what i have written above.