As the clock struck 12 at midnight, Bani kept typing furiously at her laptop. This was her daily routine i.e becoming seriously workaholic by midnight, when all her creative juices would ignite. Well, what else can be there in a spinster’s life, who had already seen over 30 summers in her lifetime? She hated to be reminded of her age, because, it reminded how the clock was really ticking – not the one on the wall that just struck 12, but the one biological that was threatening to declare her as a useless female if she didn’t find someone to mate with soon and lose her eggs to. With the past Diwali, Xmas and New Year having spent in front of her lappy ( like all other previous ones ), Bani felt miserable. While the rest of the world had fun, made merry and romanced life; Bani on the other hand, sat alone in one corner of her little home once considered her heaven, feeling dreadfully lonely and so lost.
Why was she alone? Was she that bad? Wasn’t she attractive anymore? There was a time many springs ago when the entire male species used to fall for her, showering her with praises and flowers; propositioning her; but where all had they vanished now, Bani wondered. As she grew older, the men-folk seemed to have become more and more scarce. And truth be told, nobody really wanted a 30+ something spinster these days, did they? When there were thousands of younger nubile options available, who would want to own an old horse! This glaring fact terrified Bani. And with Valentine’s Day approaching too, she had become a bundle of nerves. She didn’t want to be alone as always. Sure, she had always loved her independence and freedom, but it gave her a gnawing sense of loneliness too; especially, as she was feeling this particular day. She had seen a glimpse of the Close Up Cupid-Games, and nearly hid behind her lappy. The images of the couples hugging and cuddling seemed to be mocking at her; at what a pathetic life she lived. She desperately needed a date this Valentine, come what may.
Bani remembered her little flirty rendezvous in a matrimonial site, something she had just recently discovered. It was fun chatting with strangers in the site; after all, they couldn’t really see her or know her real identity, could they? She had made her profile in the site, stating a younger age and started getting many requests almost instantly from males of all ages. However, Bani was smart; neither did she upload her picture nor gave her real identity. Profile after profile, she browsed, but nothing really caught her fancy for long, at first. Until...that profile she stumbled across. That particular profile had indeed intrigued her, the profile that chatted to her for almost 5 hours. It was an interesting one, just like hers – with no real information, and yet as they started speaking he began telling things about her, as if he knew her already. He too didn’t have any picture uploaded. But said his name was Rishi, and that he was around the same age the one she had mentioned in her profile. He always seemed to be online, whenever she was, and everyday she chatted with him. It was like a different world she went into, when they chatted ~ almost timeless. And with her curiosity piqued, she wanted to know his real identity. She was getting attracted to him, no doubt. Would she have the guts to go ahead? Would he be the Valentine this year, the Valentine she so desperately wanted?
Bani kept throwing nervous glances at the matrimonial site from time to time, as she furiously typed simultaneously, at another tab in her browser - a blog-post that she always wrote, at midnight. Well, she had decided to play the Cupid-Games, and for once uploaded her picture and real age in her profile. She then waited, like a hunter ready for the prey, only hoping fervently that this courageous act of hers would not backfire. It had taken tremendous courage to put her real info on her profile. This was no less than a proposal itself, she mused, her biggest test yet on finding love ~ her Valentine. She only hoped and prayed, that Rishi would not delete her from his list on seeing her. He was younger, but she liked him; his company - and if she wanted things to go ahead ~ this was the only way.
Was he in invisible mode? Bani panicked, as she typed more at her blog-post, with her one eye constantly on the matrimonial chat-window. It was strange, because normally he'd show up around this time. She went to his profile and refreshed it several times. Nothing happened. One last time, she thought, before logging out like a loser; she might have to delete her profile after all, she feared. She refreshed it again. And then, to her utter surprise, Rishi's profile popped up. And this time with his picture too! Yes, he had updated his info as well, which he hadn't done so far. Bani just stared, as his message came next - with a 'hi, dear'! Was it a sign of approval ;-) Bani's heart skipped a beat at what lay ahead ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ Maybe, this Valentine would come true after all...