"I...promise...to be true to you...in good times and in bad...in sickness and in health...I will love and honor you all the days of my life..."
She pressed a button on the remote and the screen froze. She did not have time to indulge in movies now. A lot needed to be done. Her gaze swept the room she was in. The bed sheets were rumpled and crushed. The pillows lay on the floor, which itself was strewn with a variety of articles ranging from safety pins and clips to empty packets and unwashed glasses. There was a mound of clothes overflowing from the clothes hamper. She sighed. It would be a long time before she would be able to lie down on the bed with her chores all done.
Her mind went back to a month ago. They had brought both the families to a truce. It was a hard fight but they had somehow managed it. The story was not very unusual. Her father was dead against the match and his mother too was not willing to have a non-khatri daughter-in-law thrust upon her. 'After all, my son is an MBA grad.' she would say proudly. The love story and the battle to get together was almost every Indian couple's story these days. Both of them had left no stone unturned in saving their four-year-long relationship. They had used trick and truth, hook and crook, peace and war; whatever they could to make sure that they would be united in matrimony.
It had been a mere few weeks since they had exchanged thick rose garlands and taken seven rounds of the holy fire. Now as she sat, waiting for her lover-turned-husband, who was currently on a call in the next room, she wondered whether she had taken the right decision. How could she know whether he was the right man? What if her parents had been right about ‘today’s men who turned rogue after marriage’? What if she started feeling lonely? She certainly felt so now as the mountain of household chores loomed large in front of her.
As her thoughts threatened to sabotage her work, she decided to snap out of the stupid vortex of her disturbing theories and resolved to get some work done. The rooms had to be dusted, food cooked and a truck full of clothes had to be washed, the white ones separately. She huffed. As she emptied the laundry basket, a voice boomed from the screen.
"I...promise...to be true to you..."
Her husband had switched on the movie and was walking towards her now.
"In good times and in bad...in sickness and in health..."
He paused the movie and started speaking, his face turned up in a smile, "In the house and outdoors...in the cooking and the cleaning...in the washing and the sweeping..."
Now he resumed play. "I will love and honor you all the days of my life..."
The actor finished the line and he pressed the pause button again. She giggled as he picked up the dirty laundry and started segregating them into piles.
"Come on, leave them, I will manage..." she said. He picked up a large stack of clothes and took it with him to the washing machine. He undid the band fastening the packet of Ariel washing powder and sprinkled some all over the dirty clothes. She had followed him and now, she asked, "Hey..what is with all this?"
He looked at her with a smile,"What is what?"
She giggled and said,"Why are you being Mr. Cleaner? Trying to wash the clothes and all?"
"Oh it's simple. Didn't you hear the vows? I am just sharing the load, sweetie."
Saying so, he kissed her. She knew now that she had taken the right decision. She would never feel lonely or burdened. They were both in this together.