She was standing in the middle of the road. Vehicles were zooming past her, on both sides. She could hear her heart thumping loudly. “It is just a road, I’ll cross it easily. How many times in my life have I crossed this road?” She reminded herself. But she was actually trying to convince her body, to calm down her aging heart and her weak nerves which felt taut right now. She tried to wave in front of a car to slow it down but the driver seemed too fast to notice the old woman struggling to cross the road.
The sun shone brightly. Drops of sweat shined on her forehead. She wondered,”Why didn’t I listen to him? He asked me not to go out alone..but this temple is so near…” Her body shifted the weight from one leg to another, clutching the walking stick all the time. “Yes, you can do”, her mind said. But the body argued negatively. She was getting nervous with each passing moment.
Suddenly, she felt a hand gripping her wrist. The hand she knew so well – the texture, color, freckles everything. Age affected that hand too; smooth dark skin became wrinkled, nails turned gray but it was the hand which she trusted all her life right from the moment she held it for the first time. “Thank God!!!”
“Can’t you listen to me a single time? How many times have I told you not to go out without me? What would have happened if a vehicle ran over you? Are you listening?” He shouted madly at her. His scream drew startled looks from the fellow pedestrians. He gripped her hand tightly, walking beside her while crossing the road and shouting his concerns at the same time. But she just smiled. She couldn’t hear the traffic horns or feel the scorching sun or see the startled looks of the people around her. Her ‘old knight’ came to her rescue as always, shouting at her madly, making her feel like a naughty child getting caught after a prank. But his concern also made her feel that no one in this big world could love her as much as he did; neither anyone could take care of her like him nor could someone get so angry at her. Throughout her journey from a young woman to an old lady, he had always been there- the love of her life or rather the life itself.
Like old wine, love tastes better with age.