It was an usual weekend in the month of September and the sun had just set leaving behind hues of red in the evening sky. Like many other families and couples, this husband and wife with their toddler along, drove down to the city mall to spend their evening. It was a beautiful drive through the expressway that connected their relatively smaller town to the adjacent city. The environ at the mall was lively and almost everybody around seemed to be enjoying in his or her own way. Little children were having a great time playing on various amusing toys that had been set up in the play area for them.
They felt happy for having taken a break from the hectic routine of their life and coming down to spend some time together as a family in this fun filled locale. After involving in a few activities, they bought a thing or two for their little daughter and finally settled down at a coffee shop to take a break before moving on. As they sipped at their coffee and began discussing the significant and not so significant happenings of the past week, an old couple walked in through the entrance of the coffee shop. They could have easily passed unnoticed but for the way in which they firmly held on to each other as they walked by. It was a strange site for the onlookers at the coffee shop who were not used to seeing old couples coming for a cup of coffee at a crowded place in this fashion. It took most of them some time to understand that as the pair took slow small rhythmic steps towards the coffee table they were holding on firmly to each other so as to support and balance their partner’s gait. They seemed to be extremely old and had an appearance that showed signs of having worn down through the journey of their life.
The young couple who was watching them felt a surge of compassion in their hearts as they mused over the thought that they must have come accompanied by their children who would soon join them. They moved back their attention to where they left their discussion.
Just about a while had passed, their coffee was over and now they were waiting patiently as their little one slowly nibbled the ice cream from the bowl. Once again their attention drifted to the old couple who were sitting diagonally at a little distance, their children were still not around. Their hoarse and rickety voice was almost clearly audible from where they were sitting and what seemed to be like an argument caught the attention of the young couple. The old man said to his partner-“today I am not going to let you order chocolate, you always keep ordering chocolate and never try anything new”. To this the old lady replied slightly annoyed, “you are the one who always decides for me, why don’t you decide today also”, not missing any opportunity to flirt with his mate the old man teasingly said, “but then you would say it was my treat and you decided, so you decide. Please try something new for my sake today”. Impressed by his mannerism, the old woman began blushing. Soon she regained her position in the argument and coyly emphasized but I only like chocolate, it’s a treat for me so please let’s take chocolate today….” The argument continued until they finally decided upon a chocolate flavored coffee with some new toppings. The diction of their youthful argument seemed like two teenagers who had newly started dating were out on yet another date and were busy trying to please each other at the same time hold on to their side of the argument. Once they were done with the coffee they slowly walked out together, once again sticking close to each other. As soon as they were out of the shop they got busy window shopping looking at and pointing to beautiful displays in the shops around. They limped slowly hand in hand from one shop of the mall to another crossing over several times to the other side to see if there was something more interesting out there. From a distance one could easily make out they were celebrating each moment of their evening together. Time or people’s opinion didn’t seem to matter to them. It seemed they bought almost nothing as there were no bags in their hands. With the gleam in their eyes and their love for life itself they blended so well in the lively environment of the mall like here is where they belonged.
The young couple had happened to see them of and on from one or another corner of the mall through these sequence of events and now it was time to go back home. As they walked towards the Exit of the mall, the wife gently nudged at her husband and said “let’s age like that”. Evening had faded into night and the day had ended leaving behind a memory that would linger on at the back of their minds for ever.