Saturday, February 06, 2010

One day this too will pass

One day this too will pass. Each day on social interaction sites on the world wide web, people log in, lurk, comment, fight and flirt with random strangers. They are drawn by the daily fix of interacting on sites that draws them in each time.
- I am leaving now and I mean it.
- No I ain’t never coming back again.
- You don’t deserve me ingrates.
- Yo! Wassup guys? Did ya miss me?
But it is quite possible that we never come back again. Life is short and not all of us wander around the earth in our 900th year. The first time a friend died was when I was in year six. I had left him behind, in the old cantonment town near Pune, to go and study far away in Nainital. He died due to a sun stroke while I lived on in the cool air of a hill station.
Then there was ‘dog’. Behind the bluster and fights lived a teen that needed love. Some of us loved boarding schools, but we had gone there because our parents wanted the best for us. There were others who were dumped because their parents had no time for them. That was dog’s story too. He survived a horrendous year when his right hand was fractured in many places and he spent the whole year in a cast. Then we broke off for holidays and when we came back I looked for him until someone told me his story. His plaster off and freedom regained, he got on a moped to drive around the city. In another freak accident the door of a car flung open and he crashed into it. He died on the spot.
‘Sam’ had been accepted in the Masters program of his choice in US. It was his last Holi in Delhi and time to live it up. When we had wound down he was still going strong and drove off to Bhadkhal Lake. It was late in the evening when they decided to head back home but when the truck collided with his motorcycle he didn’t have a chance.
M came back in a body bag from his first posting in Kashmir, whatever pieces of him that they found anyway. His father, a decorated soldier himself, had to ask his wife to not look at the remains, lest it sullied the memory of her son. This time there were children involved as he left behind a three year old and one year old son, and the wife he had married overriding objections in the family.
And last year it was JP’s turn, JP who was my classmate in school. Originally a year senior, he joined us in year eight. Loud, noisy, in-your-freaking-face-so-what-you-going-to-do crazy JP. Mad about sports and good at it too, in each and every team representing the school. The first person to initiate soccer game during a break, sorting out teams to play, endless energy that never seemed to burn out. And gone from our midst before his children hit their teens.
Each death came at a different stage in life. Each one reminded me that it’s not just the old and the infirm that get taken away. That life does change in an instance, in the blink of an eye. Memories remain and then they too fade away. Take care, stay well.