The old man looks at his watch and then at his wife who is sitting in the rocking chair, knitting.

“They should be here any minute,” he says.

Almost immediately, the doorbell rings. The old man walks excitedly to answer it.

Standing at the doorway was a couple. Two youngsters, hand in hand. He seemed to be in his early twenties and she, in her late teens.

“Good evening, Grandpa ,” he says.

“Good evening, Uncle,” she follows.

The three of them walk into the living room and make small talk, whilst the wife abandons her knitting and goes into the kitchen to ready dinner.

The old man peeks into the kitchen and sees his wife looking up at something, arms on her hips, wrinkles on her forehead. He smiles to himself, gets up and walks into the kitchen.

“Which jar?” he asks.

“That one.” The hint of a smile  crosses her face.

The jar is brought down and cooking is resumed. The old man walks back into the living room to entertain his hosts. The young couple was busy on their phones and didn’t notice the man enter the room.

“Look at that picture I tagged you in on Instagram,” says the boy.

“Which? Oh this…’Our love is like Romeo and Juliet’s – we can die for each other’. Yeah I love you too.” She says.

…and the texting is resumed.

“How times have changed,” the old man says to himself. He reminisces about the time he and his wife were a young love. Holding hands, blushing as one looked into the other’s eyes, writing love letters…

“Dinner’s served,” says the old woman.

The party walks into the kitchen. The old man pulls out a chair for his wife at the head of the table. The wife blushes and gets seated. The young couple watches this in awe and then looks at each other. “How times have changed,” they say to themselves.

After dinner, the guests bid their farewell and walk out.

Old couple

He – “You know what got us so far?”

She – (starts knitting his sweater again and smiles) “hmm?’

He – We’ve ‘done’ more love than ‘said’ it.

Young couple

He – “You know what’s missing?”

She – (without looking up from her phone) “hmm?”

He – We’ve ‘texted and tagged’ more love than ‘done’ it.

Author: Zainab Haji

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