It took Chris a few days to settle in, his sincerity was the first thing that touched Tandra’s heart. She could see him working with the girls, the respect and kindness with which he treated them had a deep healing effect on them.
The girls became his greatest admirers.
Soon they started to take their morning strolls together, she noticed with great joy how he never took advantage of the barriers she has laid down. It seemed he knew quite a bit about conservative mentalities of Indian women, and he knew how to respect that.
Mixing with him so closely was as easy as mixing with someone who has been always around you, a good friend you know from childhood, and who respects your mindset.
“Why did not you married?” Tandra asked him, she thought it was quite alright to ask him one or two personal questions. They have been friends for more than a couple of months now.
“I was once engaged… we lived together for a few years, I wanted to give the relationship a name, she did not… she moved on…. to me that was marriage, to her just a relationship. Never felt like having another intimate relationship, have been in and out of casual ones a few times…” he answered candidly. “I guess I took birth in wrong country. I wanted one relationship and in my country very rare people try to have that.”
Then he looked at her and grinned, “Your turn!”
“I too think I was born in the wrong country… down here, very rare people marry for love, and to me, love was the only reason enough to marry… apart from that marriage is absolutely useless in my dictionary.” she answered equally honestly.
“You never fell in love?” he asked.
“One sided yes, and the other thing too happened… but nothing clicked.” she said, “I have some criterias, and Indian men have some criterias when it comes to spouses, their criteria is too much for me, mine is too much for them.”
“Explain…” he said. They sat down on a bench, facing the river.
“Indian men mostly expect their wives to adjust to them, their whole famillies and much more, they want a good lover, mother and if required slave too… who will act like a slave but will bring dowry with her… I mean. They on the other hand will be as free as they were before marriage, masters of their own lives. There is an inherent mindset in Indian men that forces them to believe that they are superior, and they should get that treatment, and all types of adjustments are female responsibilities… you wont even imagine how much a woman adjusts after she joins her spouse’s family, and even then mostly she is criticized, rarely adored…”
“Now think, which independent woman will give up her free life and get inside that cage?”
“Guess I know what you mean!” he answered. “The men of your country are dumb, they dont treat their women right even after all these sacrifices they make… to please them.”
“Tell them…” she smiled.
“May be, someday I will…”
to be continued…..
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