Driving Lessons: A Memoir 

I remember the time I’d learnt to drive. My mom had come to the conclusion that my future husband will never teach me to drive and in order to achieve the so called self sufficiency it was mandatory that I learn to drive. 

And so there it was. My dad enrolled me in a driving school and paid up all the hefty amounts for the classes and the paperwork with constant monologues that he learnt to drive all by himself. Duh. And then it began. And as usual I idled around wasting still more of my dad’s money and monologues until it was finally the week of the driving test. 

It would be an overstatement if I told you that I was not yet clear about driving. The truth was that I didn’t know a thing. My parents brought me home from hostel so that I could have extra practice at the school. And they decided to accompany me so that I wouldn’t idle around any further. And that was just the start. Within the first few days me and my entire family turned out to be an utter embarrassment and nuisance at the driving school. Every time I tried to attempt the ‘H’ I had my mother shouting from the other side of the ground on how to turn the steering wheel without knowing how to drive. Or I had my siblings fooling around with the equipments. Or I had my mother asking unnecessary questions to the teachers.

Finally after all the extra classes and missed attendance at college I cleared the test. I still remember the faces of both my parents who’d locked my siblings at home to accompany me. I remember my dad missing days at the office. I remember him carrying my vanity bag around as I did the test. And I remember my mother’s tired face as she waited for me in the sun as I drove. It’s true that they try out things in the most embarrassing of ways. But I’ll tell you what’s worse. It’s when they don’t try at all.



She looked down at her shimmering gown. It looked fine. Even pretty. Slowly, she adjusted the mask on her face. She wanted to feel like a princess from some fairytale but couldn’t. No, she wasn’t the innocent girl right out of stories. She was a freak who sold her body to earn money.

And then she looked over at him. He stood there wearing a mask but easily recognizable. Everyone knew him and women flocked around him hanging on his every word. Many would know her too. At least half the men in this room had cheated on wives and girlfriends to sleep with her. But the mask would do enough to conceal her identity. Nobody cared for her. For them, she was a faceless young body. 

She knew he had come towards her only after he touched her hands. And she knew he was planning a dance only after taking the first few steps. As she moved with him trying desperately to match his grace, she could feel the fire of all the eyes on her. Disappointed eyes, greedy eyes, lustful eyes. But all she cared for was the slight warmth of his touch on her shoulders and tiny waist. 

Oh, how she wished this would go on forever. How she wished this would be the happy ending were the two of them would live happily ever after. But it wouldn’t be. Tommorow, he would be presiding over some board meeting. And she would be back on her street trying to woo men into having sex with her. 

‘But, I shall have this dance!’

Right out of the movies!

I looked at the sky. It was a bland shade of blue topped with some orange that was caving in from around the corners. He was nowhere around. As usual. Surprise surprise.

 I turned my head and turned it away soon enough as I spotted the tons of people hugging and kissing all around me. Well that was the thing about Valentines Day, wasn’t it? You hug and kiss and call each other cheeky names and revive your promise to love each other till the end.

Ryan (as always) wasn’t around. He wouldn’t come. Nope, he wasn’t late as in the Bollywood movies. He wasn’t going to spring out of somewhere wearing a tux and holding a bouquet. He wasn’t going to apologize for being late and give lame excuses. And I as custom went, would not talk to him for a long time until the flowers are offered. And then my anger would subside and we’d hug and kiss like the rest. Girls can’t deny flowers. Bollywood rule number one. Duh.

But it was a lot better this way. How he avoided Valentines Days and anniversaries. How he brought a smile to my face every time he called me by my full name. How he smirked and pulled a face at all the clichéd couples. How he never carried shopping bags. How he never commented on everything I wore; but if he liked it, you’d know it. How he fought with me and never apologized first. How he never planned on all the dates and parties we’d go for until we broke up or got married. Life didn’t have to be your Favourite movie. It just had to be flawed with a lot of love.

Pic Credit: Vecteezy


She stood at the edge of the basin, her eyes fixated on the mirror ahead. There was a slight tang as the cold droplets from the edge of the basin touched her belly, wetting it. She closed her eyes and opened them hoping that a new image would appear within the fathoms of the mirror. She wished she could conjure one. But no. Her plain face and plain features stared back at her with the same bewildered expression she held. 

 She thought of him. His handsome face almost looked as if it was etched out on canvas by some painter in an attempt to create a Greek God. And then his words….

Seriously Jenny, you look so…. Iam ashamed to say that we are in a relationship….

You’d better wear something good or you can be introduced as my maid at the party….

All my friends have got such hot girlfriends. How the hell did I end up with you?….

She looked at her reflection once again. It was the same girl who’d topped graduate school. The same girl who’d won prizes for her exceptional verses. The same girl who’d been preparing for her entrance exam to one of the most prestigious institutes in the country and had a big chance of getting in. Her lips curled into a smirk. A smirk of confidence. She looked at the mirror as if looking at a confidante and smiled at her. Then she spoke those words that had taken immense courage to come out. “Honey, Don’t let anyone say that you are not enough”

Pic Credits: thought gadgets