Year 1995, it was chilly winter taking off to spread around with full colors, the early morning fog and frost was evidence of changing weather. Aamir was young man then, in fact he celebrated his 20th birthday just a month ago, he was lean but not mean a very lively boy who was soul of any gathering with his presence, neither tall nor dark yet handsome, with a haircut that was fashion of those day – the recent bollywood release DDLJ took over everything like storm. He was traveling to another city with so many dreams for the future. The new city was not new to him as he had his uncle’s family there; the same house was in laws for his two elder sisters.
He left his home town Faisalabad to study the new hype in Pakistani education system – IT. As there were not many good opportunities in his city he left for a bigger city Lahore, the cultural capital of the country. Aamir knew that coming days will be life changing for him as he will be learning many new things. And to learn things better and grow in whatever field you are in, you must allow change to happen resisting it can create more harm. Aamir was open to change and ready for relatively faster life and challenges.
At that time even it was mid 90s Faisalabad was not as vibrant as it is today, even in those days for boys warning pant shirt or anything other than salwar kameez was against the comfort zone. Things were different in Lahore as it is a city that has always been kind and welcoming to the new trends and allow the vicissitude to create a tone of its own.
Playing with all those thoughts he stepped out of the train, and looked around. He was standing at the Lahore Railway Station, one of the gifts to the city from Victorian Age. He noticed and experienced the first difference, the railway Station was more crowded and everyone was busy. ‘life is faster here I have to dip myself in this pace and get used to it as soon as I can’, he issued first order to himself collected his belongings and made his way out of the station. He took deep breath and let the different air get into him. It was Lahore, his new home at least for coming few years.
He traveled with just one bag as his classes were supposed to start in two months and he came early to take part in the preparations and the main event of his cousin Shahab’s wedding ceremony. Shahab was youngest son of Aamir’s uncle, as Shahab did not have any younger brother and Aamir did not have elder brother these two had great bond both played the roles for each other what they were missing. During Aamir’s childhood visiting Lahore in summer vacations was a big charm for him especially meeting Shahab playing cricket flying kites and getting into mischievous stuff that these two boys were notorious for the most famous was to confiscate hens of the old lady living in next street. ‘Time really flies with jet speed’, he talked to himself, ‘I am happy that Shahab bhai is getting married so now next is my turn’.
While Aamir was thinking and recalling that all he reached Saleem Manzil; his uncle’s house. Mr. Saleem retired from armed forces and built this house he died a year before leaving his widow Zenab Begam, and his four sons Zahid, Tariq, Khuram, and Shahab behind. Zahid is married Rabia, the elder most sister of Aamir. And Tehreem, the younger sister of Rabia, is married to Khuram. Aamir being the only son of his father and youngest kid in the family collected great affection from his late uncle, his cousins and aunt were very kind to him too. His Aunt warned him to not to stay in hostel when he was planning to move to Lahore for studies. ‘this is your own house son, and don’t think that you are living in your sister’s house. This is very much my house and you are just like my other 4 sons’, he recalled the words of Zenab Begam. ‘Mothers are impossible yet very kind’, said Aamir to himself.
He was playing with all such thoughts when he entered the house and received a very warm welcome. The house was showing exactly how a shadi wala ghar (wedding house) of Lahore during mid 90s was supposed to look. There was less than a month left in big day and celebrations were in full swing. Everyone was very excited for the event so was Aamir.
He had no idea the winds of change have started to play the game and this wedding ceremony will play a role in his future as well. If there is someone for every one of us than it was time for Aamir to see that someone. And the time came in few weeks when he saw her for the first time. (Continue)