Archive for September 25th, 2018

Trial Divorce – A Story

September 25, 2018

You must have heard of “Trial Marriage” – where a couple tries to discover whether they can live with each other.

We decided to have a “Trial Divorce” – to see whether we could live without each other…

TRIAL DIVORCE

STORY BY VIKRAM KARVE

I looked at the lock on the door.

It was the same lock.

He hadn’t bothered to change the lock.

Why should he have…?

He probably didn’t realize that I had a key.

Or maybe – he knew.

When I had left – 3 months ago – I hadn’t given him the house-key that I normally kept in my purse.

He hadn’t asked for the key.

Maybe – he had forgotten.

Or maybe – he wanted me to have the key.

I inserted the key in the lock and turned the key.

The lock opened.

I slid the door handle and opened the door.

I shouldn’t have opened the door to his flat.

In fact – I shouldn’t have come to his flat at all.

It was a violation of our “contract”.

I had broken the cardinal rule of our “Trial Divorce” agreement.

We had agreed that we – my Husband and I – we would remain absolutely “incommunicado – for six months.

Yes – we had promised to each other – that – for a full 6 months – we would remain out of each other’s lives – totally out of contact – offline and online.

And then – if our “Trial Divorce” was “successful” – we would take a final decision.

Actually – I had no intention of breaking the “Trial Divorce” pact.

It had happened due to sheer chance – serendipity.

I had not planned to stay in this city.

I was just passing through – in transit – but my flight was delayed – and – I missed my connecting flight – so – they booked me on the next flight to my destination.

This flight was scheduled to leave after 12 hours – late in the evening – so – they took me to a hotel to relax for the day.

Believe it or not – but – coincidentally – my husband’s house was located right opposite the hotel.

(Technically – it was still my house too – since I had not formally divorced my husband…)

Through my hotel window – I could see the balcony of our flat.

I could not resist the temptation.

It was 10 o’clock in the morning.

And – it was a Wednesday.

Most likely – my husband wouldn’t be home.

He would have left for office before 9 AM – and – he would return late in the evening.

And suppose he was home…?

Well – I decided to take a chance.

I could always check the lock on the door – and – if the door was unlocked – I would rush back.

I opened my purse – the house key was there – in the inside pocket – where I had kept it 3 months ago – when I had left my husband’s house.

I thought about it.

If he wasn’t home – I wouldn’t meet him – so – strictly speaking – it wouldn’t be a “breach” of our “Trial Divorce” contract – since – there would be no “contact” between him and me.

So – I walked across the street – I took the lift to our flat.

I was relieved to see – that the house was locked – and my husband was not at home.

I opened the lock – I entered the house – and – I looked around the living room.

It was exactly as I had left it – 3 months ago.

Everything was “spick and span” – as always.

He liked “spit and polish” – and everything was clean, dusted and shining.

I walked towards the bedroom.

I opened the bedroom door.

I looked around the bedroom.

The room – the bed – everything was neat and tidy – as before.

I opened the cupboard.

Everything was in its right place.

Of course – my clothes racks were empty (since I had taken all my clothes with me when I had left) – and he had put his shirts there – neatly folded.

I checked the bathrooms – absolutely spotless and clean.

It was evident that he was living all alone.

There was no “scent” of a woman.

He was in love with his loneliness.

He did not want his loneliness to be “polluted”.

Yes – he had kept his loneliness absolutely pure – idyllic – blissful.

I closed the bedroom door.

I went into the kitchen.

Everything was in its place.

Utensils had been washed and neatly stacked.

He liked to cook his own food.

He did all the house work himself.

And – it was obvious – that he was doing so now.

Nothing had changed.

I thought about it.

The living room, the bedroom, the kitchen – this was the home of a self-sufficient man – he did not need a wife.

I opened the fridge – the kitchen cabinets – everything neat, clean and orderly.

In the side cabinet – I saw the bottle of Single Malt Whisky.

The Whisky bottle was unopened.

It was good to see that he hadn’t started drinking again.

(He had quit drinking around 10 years ago…)

He had bought the bottle of whisky from the “Duty Free” Store at the Airport after our Europe Tour 6 months ago.

Yes – it was on that same fateful tour when we realized that we were not “made for each other”.

We always knew that we were “incompatible” – but – it was on this Europe Tour that we had our “epiphany”.

Our children had married and settled abroad – our “familial” obligations were over – we were still in our 50’s – and – it was right time for us to go our separate ways.

So – we decided to give it a try.

You must have heard of “Trial Marriage” – where a couple tries to discover whether they can live with each other.

We decided to have a “Trial Divorce” – to see whether we could live without each other.

After all – we had been married for 30 years.

And yes – the “Trial Divorce” seemed to be succeeding.

I was happy to be alone – in love with my loneliness – and – he seemed to be happy to live alone and enjoy his solitude too.

I looked at the unopened bottle of Single Malt Whisky.

I wondered why he had bought it.

Was it just to buy something “duty free” – just for the sake of it…?

Would he give the Single Malt Whisky to someone – or – would the whisky bottle keep lying there in the cabinet for eternity…?

Should I take the bottle of Single Malt Whisky with me and present it to someone…?

Maybe – he would never discover that the bottle was missing.

Or maybe – he would – and complain to the cops or something.

No – No – there was no point in stirring up his tranquil life of solitude.

Also – it would be unethical.

I closed the cabinet.

I walked out of the kitchen.

I walked across the living room.

The balcony glass-door was closed.

I looked into the balcony.

The potted plants were there – freshly watered.

He must have watered the plants in the morning before his bath – as he always did.

I went into his study.

Yes – “his” study – where no one was welcome – even I was not welcome.

I looked around his study – his “sanctum sanctorum” – immaculate – neat and tidy – “shipshape”.

Everything was in its right place.

Or – was it…?

I looked again – at his desk.

Something was “amiss”.

Yes – my photo was missing.

The Photo Frame on his Desk which had my Photo – it was missing.

I opened the drawers – searched around – but I couldn’t find my photo – the one he kept on his desk.

I rushed to the living room.

I looked at the mantelpiece.

Even that photo was missing – the photo of both of us – newly wedded husband and wife – clicked during our honeymoon.

He had removed me from his life.

He had eliminated all traces of me – even my photos.

It was clear that he did not need me in his life.

I felt relieved.

Our “Trial Divorce” had succeeded.

Now – once our mutually decided 6 months “Trial Divorce” period was over – we could complete the necessary formalities – to make the divorce “full and final”.

I looked around the house for one last time.

Then – I went out of the house – locked the door – and – I walked towards my hotel.

In the evening I boarded my flight – and – I flew to my destination.

I flew back home – my own home.

VIKRAM KARVE

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Disclaimer:

All stories in this blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories 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.

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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) 

Link to my source post in my Blog Academic and Creative Writing Journal Vikram Karve: http://karvediat.blogspot.com/2018/09/trial-divorce.html

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