It was music that brought them together. Harini Rao, classical singer and Kamal Aakarsh Vishnubhotla, senior official at Deloitte, met in 2009 at the office. Aakarsh suggested that they have coffee just to talk about music. Their first conversation lasted for four hours and that is it. After meeting them, there is no doubt they are an astounding couple sharing similar passions for music, arts and life.
How we met
Harini: We had a pretty filmi first meeting. We met at the workplace. Aakarsh caught a glimpse of my tattoo (I have the seven notes of music inked on my wrist.) once while I was on his floor and thought that was pretty cool. He literally hunted me down and got introduced through a common friend. Aakarsh loves music and the arts. He is very well read and has been exposed to some very rich and varied music. I was attracted to his awareness and artistic intellect. I had never really come across anyone who could make a four hour conversation just on music. And that was what is was. By the end of it, I thought, he either had a great boss or had no work at all!
Aakarsh: The funny part was neither of us drink coffee or tea and for the lack of a better idea, I asked her out to coffee at the office coffee shop! The first time I met Harini, I was stumped by her creativity and zest for life. She was into so many things and doing well in all of them! Her passion for terracotta art and her talent in music, her zeal towards learning, all of these added to her aura. End of it, I felt great interacting with her. More so, because our thoughts resonated with each other. I realised that we have similar ways of looking at some things we are interested in – art and music particularly. Exchanging phone numbers happened so naturally without much fuss. When we started interacting more, we felt a strong sense of compatibility, even about many things beyond art. Eventually, we felt (and still do) that we are soul mates.
Our parents were only too happy to get us married in April 2010, since we both were evading for a good number of years (as per them).
What drives us
H: Apart from love and mutual respect, our marriage is driven by the zeal to make every day a happy one. We have had experiences and have come to realise the hard way that life is too short to be wasted on squabbles. It is a conscious choice. When we professed our love for each other, we both resolved to not waste time on fights. It erodes the relationship.
A: That being said, of course we disagree on a lot of things, like any couple. But fortunately we both are great listeners. Our goal was just that, to make every moment cheerful and fun. And that we simply cannot afford to waste time on negativity. As Kahlil Gibran said - “anything that is not growing is dying”; it applies so well to relationships. A relationship is a journey which involves daily investment. If you are not enjoying it, you will call it a “daily effort”, but if you are enjoying it, it is your second nature, it is effortless. It only makes you love life more. And before you know it, it becomes a happy habit!
We have both individual and common aspirations. We want to explore the depths of our respective creative paths. Harini, with her music. She loves to explore things constantly and is always looking to do something new. She has a major appetite for risk and is always looking forward. I am into photography and have started learning western classical music. We also dream about getting those paths to merge someday. As a couple, our aspiration is to ensure that we make the most out of life, time and relationship. Doesn’t matter if it is about travelling or cooking or making music or even watching good films, the idea is to have a lot of fun together.
The things that we both were attracted to in the beginning of our relationship, they only multiplied after we started living together. Marriage, just like life, thrives on experiential learning and unless there is a sense of enrichment and fulfillment, in our personalities and attitudes, we cannot really enjoy the journey. Among many things, I was attracted to her simplicity in her outlook towards life, and also to her artistic talents. They only grew over these years