Written by Nandini Sethi
Seated on the sofa, I can’t help the tears that well up in my eyes, flicking through an old photo album, feeling a sudden urge to go back in time and live the days of our youth again.
I had picked up this album, to see my weddings photos, all the way back 50 years ago, to relive the adventure and thrill once again. Our 50th wedding anniversary was coming up, and the kids had decided to throw a huge party for all our family and friends, complete with music and food, long speeches, and tiresome outfit changes.
It was funny to think about – how much my husband and I didn’t want any fancy parties back then, and how much we didn’t want it now; how our parents had insisted back then, and how our kids are insisting now.
50 years ago was simpler. We eloped. We ditched the party and ran away, somewhere far, totally random, the name of which I can’t even recall. But it was romantic and special and set us apart. That’s why my wedding photos meant so much to me, they were somewhere in the mountains, surrounded by grass and sheep, us wearing expensive clothes and holding rare flowers, taking blurry pictures on our handheld camera.
“Mom!” My daughter screamed at me to get going, change into my red gown and get dad ready too. I sighed and nodded. I trudged my way upstairs, into my husband’s room, and laughed at the sight of him combing his two strands of hair, struggling to fit into his tuxedo.
“Maybe cut down on all the cakes?” I suggested. He laughed.
“How are you feeling?” He asked. I laughed, “you know how I’m feeling.” He took my hands and sat me down on the bed. For a minute there was so much silence that we could hear all the commotion from downstairs – the caterers, florists, guests, and thousands of people we didn’t even know.
“Remind me again why our kids are so persistent we go through with this?”
“Don’t ask me, I have no idea.”
“Remember 50 years ago?” He asked.
“Of course I do,” I said, allowing myself to feel nostalgic, “everything was so calm and quiet, and just what I wanted today.”
“But it would be irresponsible to just leave our kids stranded after all these preparations,” he added wisely. I nodded, agreeing, “definitely, like what we did to our parents back then.” He nodded too.
A moment of telepathy ensued. I smiled, knowing exactly what was going on in his mind. I didn’t meet his eye, my head bowed, but I sensed a little smirk creeping in on his face.
“The back door on the second floor is off-limits to the guests and staff.”
“Yes, I have heard that it is,” I contributed.
“Well then, what are we waiting for?”
“For the right time. Hurry up, no one can see us!” He said, both of us laughing and giggling, like young lovers about to be married for the first time.