Being true Bollywood aficionados, my sister and I often looked to Hindi cinema for guidance on how to find a true soul mate. Surely the producer of millions of love stories would offer some answers. Here’s what we found after a thorough analysis:1. Long hair is a MUST. When a girl is twirling around in a busy nightclub without bumping into anyone, shoulder length hair will not smack future soul mates with the face-full of hair that makes them realize that their one and only love is in the vicinity. (“Tumhe Aaj Maine Dekha” from “Kuch Naa Kaho”) 2. Our feet haven’t inspired poetry yet. So every time we find a journal, we can’t match the handwriting to that of our soul mate’s. (“Pakeezah”)
3. Modern plumbing may be convenient, but it’s throwing a damper on our open-air lake bathing. Shower splashing just doesn’t cut it. (“Roja”) 4. Lighting a candle for the safety of a long-distance best friend seemed like a wonderful idea until we lit our drapes on fire. So much for that… (“Silsila Yeh Chaahat Ka” from “Devdas”)
5. Certain soul-mate finding situations require one to be blinded by full nikaab. How else will we run into people who then fall in love at the sight of our beautiful hands? (“Mere Mehboob”) 6. When our amazing neighbor tried to cheer us up with a church choir and dancers in our neighborhood, he was arrested for creating a public disturbance. We haven’t seen him since. (“Pretty Woman” from “Kal Ho Naa Ho”)
7. Any potential soul mates spying on us during yoga would need to help us up after we’d fallen out of downward dog before falling in love with our not-so-graceful positions. (“Taal”) 8. The last time we tried public singing, we got weird looks and hateful stares. We didn’t get soul mates running after our voices. (“Nadiya Kinare” from “Abhimaan”)
9. Our parents installed blinds in our house years ago for the sake of privacy – little did we realize the importance of clear views for peeping toms in finding a soul mate. (“Mujhse Shaadi Karogi”) 10. On our final attempt to repair innate tone-deafness, we hired a street performer to help us learn how to sing. He gave up after one lesson, and deemed us hopeless. (“Jab Tak Hai Jaan”)
Despite her inability to meet these Bollywood expectations for love, my sister eventually did find her soul mate, and she is now expecting her second child! As for me, I’m hoping for a similar fate — and it’s comforting to know that I can find “the one” without things like poetic feet or towel-dancing. There will definitely be no towel-dancing.
Nayela Keen is a radiologist who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family.
Farah Naz Khan is a soon-to-be medical school graduate and future medicine resident at Emory University. After graduating from college in Boston, she returned to her Alabama hometown for medical school where she was reunited with the mix of Southern hospitality and South Asian flair that had shaped her childhood. Follow her on Twitter @farah287 or read some of her thoughts at farah287.blogspot.com.