Life had changed for me. I never realized it. Moonlight walk changed into late night strategy workshops. Candlelight dinner turned into business meetings. Sweet and short phone calls from her transformed into long hour teleconferences. Gifts were no more priority now — there should be some tangible return whatever we invest, after all. Spending even 5 dollars on the bouquet for the Valentine’s Day seemed meaningless — you would lose at least half an hour searching for a parking space in the downtown.
Overall there was no respite from the hectic office and the future planning. Whenever she, in a very mild attempt, tried to express her feelings, I had pre-defined answer, “these all are for us only, darling” and she used to be quiet for another month or so.
Recently I had to go to Holland on a business trip for a week. I was working on an important assignment. I didn’t have even five minutes to talk to my parents who traveled more than fifteen hundred miles just to meet us. I called her to inform that I had to leave that evening. It was not new to her. It happened many times, and every time, in evening, I found her standing at the door, smiling, with my suitcase packed with all the necessary stuffs.
I checked in to Crown Inn in Eindhoven. It was 3 PM. I wanted to rehearse my presentation before I meet the senior management. I was sure that she would have kept the file. In past, she never missed what I needed, never ever. But I could not control my anger. I opened my leather cased Samsonite and file was not there!!! I took out or rather threw cloths one by one on the cozy floor of Crown Inn.
“Here it is” phewwww… what a relief.” I sighed. I knew she never missed even my minute taste and never ending petty demands. And for this important file, I had specifically reminded her.
I opened the file. There was a pink envelop, something similar to what we used to exchange, long time ago, before our marriage. Those days, loves were not made on the Internet. It had been more than twelve years.
I opened the envelope. It had our family photo, with her and our two little ones. We all were smiling. There was a pink greeting card with a red heart printed on it. Inside the card, it read, “Miss you my dear Teddy Bear.”
When I was returning, at the Schiphol airport, after many years I purchased something for her… just for her… a pair of diamond earrings. I was missing her badly, as never before.