I can never tell you enough how much I miss them graceful beauties and their smiles. I cannot adequately convey how shattered I was to discover sometime last week that someone had conspired to deny me their smiles. Why would these cruel people deny me such basic pleasures and privileges? Had I caused them any trauma by smiling at these beauties each morning?
For at least five days a week, I would meet them after seeing Priya set off for school. All I did as I walked past them was smile at them. They would flash their wonderful smiles back. I was so enraptured by the their magnetic charm that I would lock my eyes with theirs till the time I passed them, not slowing my pace lest I reveal more than was necessary to the other men.
Honestly, I was unmindful of these others who wondered what I was up to and why a smile lit up my own face. I was lucky. These other men would be walking in the opposite direction and the topography of the place ensured that they would not get to see those smiling faces at all. The little secret made me smile more.
Of course, I wasn’t the only one drawn to them. There were a few who dared steal kisses, shamelessly ignoring me walking by! And what of those with the charming smiles? Well, they continued to smile at me, oblivious of those kissing them and looking over their shoulders. I found that a good arrangement. Who was I to complain so long as I got them smile back at me?
It was a strange kind of romance that we shared, them and me. For all that, I would never know if they missed me at all over the weekends when Priya does not have to go to school and I did not have a reason to get away from the cozy bed until the sun was well and truly up. Quite funnily, I would not even think of those smiling faces when I was home at the weekends.
But last week, the enforcers in our society seemed to have driven them away, denying me my daily dose of smiles. They had no clue about what they had done to those with the heavenly smiles and to me. There was no trace of them at all. Overnight, they had been rooted out and I would never really know where they went.
For a couple of days, my heart sank each time I approached the bend where the smiles lit my day hitherto. I did spot some of those who stole kisses for a day or two but not long thereafter. I reckon they found some others to kiss. Me, I will miss the sunflowers that smiled at me for more than a month until some cable had to be laid and the flower-beds destroyed.
And yes, I continue my morning walks with hope in my heart, a prayer on my lips and a warm smile when I remember those sunshine smiles.