Today I saw her after many years. I was nostalgic. I remembered my little radio and the famous Dilip Kumar song from the 1950 movie ‘Babul’ – Milte hi aankhen, dil hua deewana kisika…Afsana mera ban gaya afsana kisika….
Those were the days. Carefree life. We were 16 year old students, in between the last lap of childhood and on the threshold of adolescence. Almost all of us were THE DILIP KUMAR, in search of our Vyjayanthimala.
There was this girl, Binaka, whom I liked. Friends teased me, hooted her name whenever she was around. Binaka was a beautiful and shy girl. Long hair, dark eyes.
I was a backbencher while she sat on the third row. I could watch her all the time. During recess, we stole glances. Smiling, she would avert her eyes. My heart would flutter like a bird.
I loved songs. My father had gifted me a small radio on my birthday. I had it with me all the time. My favourite song was – Milte hi aankhen... Whenever the song came up on the radio, I would sing – loudly if the situation permitted. Girls would laugh at me. But Binaka knew I sang for her.
After school, I was sent abroad for further studies. Before leaving, I tried to meet Binaka. But those were strict days. Parents did not allow such meetings. We could not muster enough courage to meet. I tried smuggling a letter through one of her friends. But the letter never reached Binaka, as her friend was too scared to hand it over.
I returned after studies. Met my friends. Enquired about her. But, she was married. Friends said, she’d cried a lot. I was disheartened at first. But life moves on. I recollected her memories, listening to my little radio. My favourite song brought back strong emotions.
I soon married a wonderful girl. My life was happy and Binaka drifted away like a dream.
I am a widower now, with two sons, daughters-in-law and grandchildren. I joined a Laughter Club to kill my boredom, which I attend every morning.
And there she was one morning, a new member. Binaka?? I tried to guess. Thin white hair, slightly wrinkled face, yet beautiful. We stole glances. She was trying to recollect. Then, while leaving, on an impulse, I hummed my favourite tune. She turned with a surprised smile. Yes, she was indeed Binaka.
Over a cup of coffee, we exchanged details. She was also a widow, with a son and a daughter, and staying with her son’s family. They have shifted to my town on her son’s transfer.
I returned home, humming my tune. I rummaged amongst my old belongings and found my radio. It no longer worked but I cleaned it and kept it on my desk. My grandson laughed curiously when I asked him to load my favourite song in my mobile.
Dilip Kumar & Vyjayanthimala – Famous actors of yesteryears.
Song – The moment eyes met, heart went crazy for the person,
Love story that was his, is now mine too.
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