Wednesday, November 19, 2014

MY FIRST LOVE STORY – RENDEZVOUS AT SUNRISE

MY FIRST LOVE STORY

RENDEZVOUS AT SUNRISE
Short Fiction  A Simple Love Story
By
VIKRAM KARVE

If you ask me what motivated me into writing my first short story, I will say: The Sunday Morning Market in Vizag. 

Yes, it was a visit to this Sunday Morning Market, more than 25 years ago, in 1989, that inspired me to write my first story  Rendezvous at Sunrise.

In Vizag (Visakhapatnam), every Sunday Morning, I would go up to Dolphin’s Nose and then come down to the beach (which we called Continental Beach) to relax in the waters and walk on the sands. 

After that, on our way back, we would head for the “Sunday Market” at Scindia to pick up our weekly stock of vegetables and other goodies.

Maybe, this Sunday Morning Activity stimulated the dormant and latent creativity in me and gave birth to my first piece of creative writing  a love story.

Your first love always has an enduring place in your heart. 

It is the same with your first creative work.

Your first creative baby always has a special significance. 

This is the first short story I wrote. 

It is a simple love story.

It is a story of inchoate and unrequited love that happens to all of us.

I wrote this story 25 years ago during my Vizag days after a visit to the Sunday Morning Market.

I kept this story with me in my diary for some time.

Then, one day, I sent this story to the literary supplement of a newspaper in response to a fiction story competition.

To my delightful surprise, this story won the first prize. 

I cannot describe my emotion when I saw my story in print, given the pride of place in the magazine.

Yes, this was my first published work of Fiction, my first Creative Baby. 

I love this story  Rendezvous at Sunrise

Do read the story and tell me if you liked it.


RENDEZVOUS AT SUNRISE  a Simple Love Story By Vikram Karve

Sunrise, on the eastern coast, is a special event.

I stood at Dolphin’s Nose, a spur jutting out into the Bay of Bengal, to behold the breaking of the sun’s upper limb over the horizon of the sea.

As the eastern sky started unfolding like crimson petals of a gigantic flower, I was overcome by a wave of romance and nostalgia – vivid memories, not diminished by the fact that almost ten years had passed.
  
I was a young bachelor then, and Vizag (Visakhapatnam) did not have much to offer.

Every Sunday morning, I used to rise before dawn and head for Dolphin’s Nose to enjoy the resplendent spectacle of sun majestically rising out of the sea.

The fresh salty sea breeze was a panacea for all the effects of the hangover caused by Saturday night excesses.
  
After the viewing the metamorphosis at sunrise, I used to walk downhill along the steep mountain-path towards the rocky beach for a brief swim.

I used to notice a flurry of activity at a distance, in the compound of a decrepit building, which I used to ignore, but curious, one day I decided to have a closer look.
  
It was a fish market.

Most of the customers were housewives from the nearby residential complexes who were in their “Sunday-worst” – sans make-up, slovenly dressed, face unwashed and unkempt hair – what a contrast from their carefully decked-up appearances at the club the previous evening.
  
I began to walk away, quite dejected.

And suddenly, I saw her.

I stopped in my tracks.

She was a real beauty – tall, fair and freshly bathed, her long lustrous hair dancing on her shoulders.

She had large expressive brown eyes and her sharp features were accentuated by the rays of the morning Sun.

I cannot begin to describe the sensation she evoked in me but it was the first time in my life that I felt my heart ache with intense yearning.

I knew this was love.
  
But I knew in my heart that I stood no chance – she had a mangalsutra around her neck.

She was married – maybe happily too.

Nevertheless I went close to her and made her pretense of buying some fish.

Smiling cannily at me she selected a couple of pomfrets and held them out to me.

I managed to briefly touch her soft hands – the feeling was electric and a shiver of thrill passed through me.

She communicated an unspoken good-bye with her teasing dancing eyes and briskly walked away.

I was too delightfully dazed to follow her.

I returned to my room and had fried pomfret for breakfast. 

Needless to say they were delicious.
   
I religiously followed this routine every Sunday morning.

She never missed her rendezvous with me – same place, same time, at precisely 7 o’clock in the morning.

But not a word was exchanged between us.

I was too shy and she probably wanted to keep it this way – a beautiful ethereal relationship – a love so delicate that one wrong move might destroy everything.
   
Meanwhile, I have developed a taste for fried pomfret – quite creditable, considering that I had never eaten fish before.
   
I left Vizag and traveled around the world, met so many beautiful girls in the numerous exotic places I visited, but I never forgot her.

A man’s first love always has an enduring place in his heart.
   
And now I was back in Vizag almost ten years later.

As I walked down the slope towards the beach, in my mind’s eye I could still vividly visualize the playfully sublime look on her face 
 her gentle smile and communicative eyes – although ten years had passed.

I could not contain the mounting excitement and anticipation in me. 

I was desperately yearning to see her again. 

It was a forlorn hope but I was flushed with optimism.
   
As I reached the beach I noticed that the Sun was well clear of the horizon.

I glanced at my watch. 

It was almost 7 o’clock.

I hastened my step – I almost broke into a run – and in a few minutes 
 I reached the fish market.

I stood exactly at the same spot where we used to have our rendezvous at sunrise.
  
With tremors of anticipation, almost trepidation, I looked around with searching eyes.

Nothing had changed. 

The scene was exactly the same as I had left it ten years ago.

Only one thing was missing 
 she wasn’t there.

Yes, she wasn’t there.

I had drawn a blank.

I was crestfallen.

My mind went blank.

I stood vacuously, oblivious to the world around me.

And suddenly I felt that familiar electrifying touch, the same shiver of thrill.

It shook me to reality, as quick as lighting.

She softly put two pomfret fish in my hands.

I was in seventh heaven.
   
I looked at her.

I was not disappointed.

Her beauty had enhanced with age.

But something had changed.

Yes, it was in her eyes.

Her large brown eyes did not teasingly dance anymore.

There was a trace of sadness, a tender poignancy in her liquid brown eyes as she bid me an unspoken goodbye.
I was so dumbstruck by the suddenness of the event, and the enormity of the moment, that I stood frozen, like a statue, unable to react or to say anything.   

It was only as she was leaving that I noticed that there was no mangalsutra around her slender neck.

VIKRAM KARVE
Copyright © Vikram Karve 
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Disclaimer:
This story is a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the story are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:
No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

Copyright © Vikram Karve (all rights reserved)

I wrote this story in 1989 and have posted it online earlier in my creative writing blog in then year 2004 at url: http://creative.sulekha.com/a-story-of-unrequited-love-by-vikram-karve_27566_blog
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