My latest book is The One Who Swam With The Fishes.
"A mesmerizing account of the well-known story of Matsyagandha ... and her transformation from fisherman’s daughter to Satyavati, Santanu’s royal consort and the Mother/Progenitor of the Kuru clan." - Hindustan Times
"Themes of fate, morality and power overlay a subtle and essential feminism to make this lyrical book a must-read. If this is Madhavan’s first book in the Girls from the Mahabharata series, there is much to look forward to in the months to come." - Open Magazine
"A gleeful dollop of Blytonian magic ... Reddy Madhavan is also able to tackle some fairly sensitive subjects such as identity, the love of and karmic ties with parents, adoption, the first sexual encounter, loneliness, and my favourite, feminist rage." - Scroll
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4 January 2005
Never Been Kissed
Today’s topic of discussion, and my first post in the new year will focus on kissing. More specifically, the first kiss.
My first kiss, was with this guy who I’ve blogged about before, my first real boyfriend Harsh. It was New Year’s Eve and we had been stuck in a massive traffic jam around 11.45 pm. By 12 we reached the party we were heading for, and walked towards it, amidst sounds of firecrackers and people cheering. Harsh steered me behind a car and hugged me. “Happy New Year,” we both said, and I noticed that his arms didn’t let go, not immediately. For the first time in my life, I was aware of the silence before a kiss, you know what I mean, when there’s a pause in the conversation that can only be filled by his lips on yours. Of course, I jumped into the gap and said, eyes down, “So are you going to kiss me now?” He smiled and nuzzled my cheek, “What do you think?” And I, carried away by my own daring, said boldly, “I think you should.”
That first kiss sucked. My head snapped back, I didn’t really know what to do with my mouth, I knew my hands should be somewhere, so I placed them on his shoulders thereby cutting off circulation to my neck with my elbows. After a while, he stopped and took my hand, smiling smugly. I staggered a little and then said, “So that’s what it’s like.”
“Yup,” he said, still with the smug smile.
On the whole, I was rather glad to get it over with. I was seventeen, a rather late bloomer, since all my friends had been making out steadily since they were fourteen, but I did wish that kiss had been more magical, the way it was in books and movies.
So, a couple of days ago, I took a brief survey amongst my friends. They all laughed initially at the memory but agreed finally that the first kiss was nowhere near what they imagined.
“The guy was gross!” exclaimed one friend while another said, “Yeah, I just didn’t know what to do with my mouth.” One said the memory was so bad she didn’t even want to talk about it. They were memories to make fun of, not to think about with mushy eyes. We pulled on our cigarettes and giggled through the grey smoke.
Did no one have the perfect first kiss? Was it just a myth built up by “young adult” books? If that’s true, it’s kind of sad, really. Like not believing in Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy anymore.
What was your first kiss like?