I was 14 that year. My parents admitted me to a new school, in a new city. My father got transferred and had to move to Ajmer. It was my first day at the school. Everyone was looking at me, the new guy, silently sitting on the last bench. Some of them even threw paper planes at me. One of those landed right beside my left eye. In that moment of anguish I started rubbing my eyes using my left hand. It was the moment, I saw her for the first time with my right eye and perhaps fall in love at the same moment. I gave in a scary smile, she smiled at me too with all cuteness.
I thought she liked me too and when Valentine's Day came around, I thought to propose her. Just to impress her, I broke my ‘Gullak’ to buy a card and chocolates for her. However buying was the easy part. I was feeling nervous about giving those gifts to her and didn’t know how I would muster the courage to talk about my feelings. Bad thing, you cannot buy courage like chocolates. After a long agonizing decision-making time, I decided to face her.
There was another boy in the class who liked her too. On that Valentine's Day, he also brought card and gift box for her. Before I could approach her, he crossed the way like a cat and proposed her. She was shy at first and smiled and moved. What a relief! But it enhanced my fear further as chances of being rejected were too high. All kinds of thoughts started racing through my mind and my heart started thumping my chest.
I came back to my seat and put the card and chocolates back in the school bag. I started reading an English story book to distract my mind away from all the thoughts. Suddenly, I felt someone snatching the book from my hand. To my utter surprise, here was my valentine. She was there with her cute smile on lovely face and simply asked, where is my gift? Are you hiding it in your bag?
It was the most amazing day of my life. Her marvellous voice and touch of her soft hands is still fresh in my mind. Next year I had to move to another city because of my dad’s transfer and that marked the end of my first love encounter. Even today whenever I think of that brief period of my life, a smile appears on my face. First love is something special.