It has been three days since I wrote to her. I had finally picked up courage and proposed to her. But she has still not responded. This suspense is just killing me! Why can’t she just make haste and reply either way? Why is she keeping me hanging on the edge like this?
Ah! Finally! I see the postman coming in the distance. I have always found the Bollywood songs about waiting eagerly for the letter from one’s beloved cheesy. Now I realize they are not. How my heart flutters at the very sight of the postman!
He does have a letter for me. But it is not from my dear Sarah! It is from some Rachel! Who the hell is Rachel? And what does she want with me?
I am so frustrated that this letter is not from Sarah that I just want to tear it up without reading. But then better sense prevails and I open it and begin to read.
It reads, “You may not know me and would be surprised to receive this letter from me. I am Sarah’s best friend Rachel and I know everything about you. We have been close friends since childhood and she confides everything in me.”
I wonder what is this ‘everything’ she knows about me. Somehow the letter is already putting me off. I read on, “She seems to hold you in very high regard. She often speaks of you in glowing terms.”
High regard indeed! My foot! What was she getting at anyway?
“I wanted to discuss something important with you. I felt such a good person like you should benefit from the grace of the one true God. So I wanted to share the message of Christ with you.”
From there on, the letter prattles on a lot of Christian missionary stuff. I finally do what I should have done as soon as I received the letter. I tear it up and throw it into the dustbin.
I am by now sure Sarah must have received my letter and this must have been her way of responding. And what a shabby way to respond indeed! Not directly saying ‘yes’ or ‘no’ but asking a friend to send a letter suggesting conversion. How pathetic!
But then come to think of it, this letter does mean that she was considering my proposal seriously. Why else would my proposal be followed by a suggestion to convert? I guess she wants to respond to me based on how I react to the idea of conversion. So all I have to do is to respond to that overbearing friend of hers expressing interest in receiving the message of Christ or whatever, I guess. Then, presto! I will have a positive response from Sarah! Very easy isn't it?
I don’t know. Maybe I am being too harsh to her. What is so inherently wrong in the suggestion? Religion is after all matter of convenience. Not like I am very passionate about religion or anything, eh? It would probably help remove the obstacle of objections from her parents on the basis of religious difference. But then what about my parents? Especially my mother! She is so deeply religious. She prays morning and evening without fail and does not miss even one of those fasts. How would she feel if I told her I am going to convert to Christianity? It would be like plunging a dagger into her heart.
But mother has always understood my feelings. Maybe this time also she will and will also convince my father like she always does. Should I write back to Rachel and accept her proposal? No! I can’t! I find the whole idea so damn repulsive! It seems like an abject surrender of a desperate lover. It hurts my male ego. I can imagine how my friends would laugh at me behind my back if they come to know of this. But is my pride more important than love? Frankly I do not know. However I can’t help feeling it was sly of her to get that friend of hers to write to me instead of talking to me directly. I just do not appreciate the idea of bringing third parties between us. The right thing would have been to talk to each other directly heart to heart. Anyways what has happened has happened. I now need to sit down and think clearly what to do next.
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