March 8, 2010

What I Miss....

Memories are infinitesimally more relishable when one has people to share them with. As a child, I had to move quite a number of times, owing to the nature of my dad’s profession. As he served the nation, by helping those that protect her and her people, with his medical services, I got to be a part of the livelihoods of a variety of ‘peoples’, but my own childhood became, to an extent, fragmented. We resided away from our hometown, our people, our cultural fabric. We had to anchor ourselves in waters which weren’t ours, and lived lives which we would have to abandon. I made friends that I knew wouldn’t be forever for me to keep. Those days are long gone, and I have been living in my home-town for close to the last three years, I have made friends in this city, and got on with life. But sometimes, I do remember school. A relic or a memento in some corner of the house brings to total recall the most wonderful, the diverse range of experiences that school was. It doesn’t help that I’m in touch with only one friend from the days I remember as ‘School Days’, and when I repetitively undergo epiphanies that most of my present friends are in touch with all of their miniature-day friends, and when I witness them discussing their days of school-uniforms-getting-stained, drawing-lessons-and-basic-math, junior-school-silly-revenge-tales and Noddy and Enid Blyton and Cartoon Network, it feels like pin-pricks that the people I shared them with are forever lost(well the Facebook and Orkut accounts exist, but in effect, they ARE lost).

Around a week back, a friend from Class 5, Rituraj Jain added me as a friend on Orkut. I remember the times when we used to sit together and discuss things like Civic-sense in Jamaica, and his Mc Donald’s cap. After he had left school, in the nine years of interim, I had thought about him, and about what had come of him quite a few times. So, naturally, I began frantically searching for a photograph of his the moment I came by his profile. While going through his three albums, I was actually picturing the head of the same ten-year old boy, from the Class 5 Class-Photo, on a grown-up’s body. Disappointment hit me when I realized that none of the twenty-five photographs in his Virtual-albums were of his own. He has evidently grown into a nature-lover and pretty much a family-guy. All the photos were either of trees, plants, and the encasing skies, or of his parents, sisters, and extended family. Neither has he replied to my “How and where are you these days, man?” query yet. This is the tenacity of the communication-cord that today connects me and my school-friends.

The world too is changing rapidly. What is true today ceases to hold any meaning tomorrow. Such disruptions even in minute things upset me. I have grown up watching the Filmfare Awards- India’s Academy Awards. The best and the biggest stars and planets of Bollyverse come down to celebrate the best of the bygone year. The grandest performances, the best attires, and the most-memorable moments – these are all what Filmfare is all about. Everything in Filmfare becomes a part of Bolly-history. I want to be a part of the legacy, I used to say to myself every year after watching the event on the television screen in my mundane, dichromatic room. This year’s event, which I watched last evening, seemed less colorful than my SAB life. The lustre, the magnificence, the visual opulence, everything seemed lost. The once-glorious stars and starlets seemed dull and pale, the smiles seemed mechanical, the speeches diplomatic and rote-learnt. Where was the old-charm, the life, the warmth? It seemed like an ugly-cousin of the more-restrained Oscars.
As I die every night, a new I is born every morning. Yesterday’s me isn’t today’s me. Last moment’s me died as the moment passed by. Nothing stays the same. Only the ghosts of yesterday permeate their way into today no matter how solids are the walls of indifference I create to insulate myself, and haunt the happiness out of me, and take it back to yesterday. Similarly shall today’s ghosts bring tomorrow’s happiness back to today. The balance is restored but the walls between the days dissolve resulting in such inarticulateness, to such incoherence of words and thoughts.

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