One Trip – New Beginnings

“Do whatever your hearts wants you to do”

Aditya suggested to Kshitija.

Aditya and Kshitija were lying on the little grassy area atop the cliff they trekked that day with the rest of their trekking group. They were gazing at the stars in the clear night sky, feeling the wind blowing against their cheeks, gently swaying away their hair. They were a little distance away from their camp site. They had lit up a small fire and they were now feeling cosy lying there gazing at the stars in the cosy warmth of the fire.

For Kshitija this was a very new experience. This was the first time she was travelling alone, stepping out of her comfort zone. Usually her days encompassed waking up early and going to office after her daily dose of workout and back home in the late evenings. Before she joined her job each and every moment in her life was focused on becoming CA, she never paid heed to other desires in those days. Then one day she saw this post on Facebook of a trip to Manali, and she decided she will make this trip, a solo trip. So far she was having the time of her life, she made so many new friends in this trip and she also came across her childhood friend, Aditya.

Aditya made this trip very comfortable for her. From the first day, he ensured she was never lonely and homesick. She was an ambivert by nature so didn’t really speak all that much to other members of this trip. It was Aditya’s constant teasing, nagging, stupid jokes and series of anecdotes which gradually made her comfortable enough to mingle with others on this trip. She started with one laugh at a silly joke and then never stopped laughing with everyone on this trip. She had forgotten how it felt to laugh like this, this freely. She felt so happy and at so much peace, that she couldn’t remember the last time she was this contented and joyous. She felt more energized to take up new things. She no more felt any hesitation in doing random things desired by her. She would dance and sing her heart out without the usual anxiety of being perfect, simply enjoying the moment. She was able to be herself without any shields and walls. More than half the credit went to Aditya for making her accept and show this wild side of hers.

So, lying there under the blanket of the star filled sky, she thought about Aditya’s words….however she got stuck on…heart….She questioned herself, “What does my heart really want?”She reasoned, “I wanted to become a CA, I became CA, and then I wanted a good job, now I have that too. Perhaps a promotion is what I want” She scratched that thought with by answering, “my brain wants that not my heart.” She questioned herself again, “What is it that my heart wants then?” and then she turned and her eyes found Aditya, smiling his smug smile as usual, its sparkle reflecting in his eyes. She couldn’t help but smile herself looking at that million dollar smile.  In that instant a sudden realisation struck her. Her heart desired Aditya by her side for the rest of her life. She had fallen in love with him.

Kshitija asked him, “But, what if the desires of my heart are impossible to achieve.” Revealing her feelings to Aditya was impossible as she never even had a crush before this. This was a whole new territory for her. Aditya replied her, “impossible itself spells I M Possible, so just act on your desires, the worst thing that can happen is you will fail and fall. What have you got to lose?” She thought about that and decided, in the spirit of new experiences, she should tell him.

“Adi, I like you, and before you go down the whole friend-love route…let me tell you that I think I have fallen for you, as in not just as a friend.” After this tirade of words, she looked at him, and for once his face was blank, no smug smile, no other expression. She thought she just made a fool of herself. She was about to turn and walk towards their camp site, she felt her cheeks getting wet, realising she was in tears she was even more embarrassed. Aditya caught her hand and pulled her towards him, before she could comprehend this sudden movement, he hugged her, wiping away her tears while at it. He said, “I thought you would never feel the same way as I did, I never told you as I thought I wasn’t good enough for you.” Kshitija was suddenly furious, “So you just assume everything all by yourself.” He replied, “Yes I really was stupid this one time, but I am glad u told me.” She asked, “So you like me too?” He replied, “Like you?? Are you kidding me? every guy in this trip likes you, I am so much in love with you, that I feel like kicking them and I am not even the jealous type of guy.” He continued, “I am so in love with you.”

Kshitija felt like dancing in happiness at that moment. She felt like her world finally had that missing piece it needed to complete itself. She felt at so much peace. She knew she needed to go back to her hectic work life away from all the tranquility of this campsite and hill station, though she will be taking something back from this world to brighten up that world. With that thought another reality hit her. Aditya was going away out of India for a project soon after this trip. Braving her heart, she asked him, “You will be away from me once this trip is over. You will get busy in your life, I will get busy in mine.” She continued, “How will we sustain what we have here back in our mundane worlds, not to mention you will be leaving for London next month.”

For Aditya none of this mattered, as he knew only one thing… following his heart wherever it took him. This time it was going with Kshitija, so he knew he will figure something out, he was not going to give this up. She was a bright ray of sunshine too important for him to let that be covered by grey clouds of monotonous life. He told her, “We live in 2016 and even in 1816, people managed to sustain their love through messages sent through birds. We have much more efficient means like phones, skype, etc. Besides any place is just a flight or train away.” Kshitija thought this was risky for her sanity and her heart. However, she was not one to give up even before trying, so she decided to follow her heart and this one time do what it was pointing at. She told him, “I am so glad I came on this trip, it has turned out to be so blissfully life-altering for me.”

Aditya replied her, “I am glad you took this trip among all others and even more glad to have found you again after twelve years.”

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