June 30, 2009

Friend of Days Gone By

One of the readers of this blog has written in her own about the mind finally winning over the heart. I wish I could do so too. But I know from experience when someone has to assert this victory, it just means the victory of a skirmish. What it really means is that the Mind has lost the war to heart. When the mind wins, it always does subtly, changing you completely from within, in the process.

Today I wish the mind had won for I have been feeling miserable all through June. And though I seldom speak about these weaknesses of the heart in public, I intend to do so today, simply because this might be the easiest way to find someone I lost a long time back.

It was the late eighties. And I was young. I graduated from my old school and family sent me to a new school. I was told, I would now be in Class One. I was about to become a Big boy. The school building was impressive and extremely awe inspiring. The boys looked smart and they were talking to each other in English. I was astounded. I did not speak in English. My parents did not. My sister did, but she did it only when with her friends. Why would anyone want to speak in English?

It was during those days of confusion that I had found two of my closest friends. These were friends who would remember Madhurjya and not let him vanish within Banjo when Banjo would be born. When I came back from college, they would be there, we would be meeting up. Things were definitely not the same as the last day in school, but then we knew we were growing up. One of them is still with me, bearing my phone calls at odd hours and at odd places, like when he is about to give his head under the mercy of a hair stylist in Amsterdam or that’s what he claims.

Anyway, this post is about the other. He was one of the most innocent people I have come across and apart from the man from Pondicherry, I don’t think many come close. He was loyal beyond measure. In fact, all three of us were, to each other. When I had faced my first group opposition, he was there supporting me without caring if he would be castigated from the community. And there is nothing more terrifying that being castigated by your own peers while you are in school.

Something happened between the years I spent in Pilani. He changed houses but for some reasons he did not pass on his new numbers to either of us. The two of us kept looking for him, wanting him to come back. We were the triumvirs since we had read Julius Caesar. But the fellowship was broken.

June always meant his birthday. And for the last few years June means absolutely nothing. While I smile with my new friends, in my heart I know I yearn for one of my oldest friends.

The mind is more pragmatic, wanting me to let go. It also warns me that it will never be the same. But I know I have re started relationships so many times in my life, it will not be a problem. My loyalty to the brotherhood wants one last chance.

A few days back I walked into the Church of Don Bosco at Matunga. And there she stood, Mother Mary in all her resplendent glory carrying the Baby Jesus. And I knew I had hope, still. Don Bosco is where we had started.

Somewhere in this world, is the friend of my childhood. May the winds bring you peace and glory wherever you are!


Sowmi said...

I wish he comes back!! I know how it feels to lose a close friend Banjo!!! Wish he reads this blog too :)
Beautiful post for your childhood friend :)

The Soul of Alec Smart said...

You know, sometimes old friendships are best kept in memories. Often, when we meet again, we are strangers again - strangers with a vague perception of each other. Could be just me :)

Anyway, Don Bosco was also my first school.

Strong agreer on 2 things:
a) Why would anyone want to speak in English?
b) Nothing worse to get castigated by your peers in school - kids are the meanest people ever!

Anand Kashyap said...

Man from Pondicherry! Anyone I know ?

sayrem said...

Nothing as fancy as triumvirs struck us and we are plain Amar Akbar and Anthony.

Madhurjya (Banjo) said...

@Sowmi - I do too

@ Soul - It's not just you. And yes, kids are mean. jesus forgive me :)

@ Anand - Nopes you don't :)

@ Sayrem - for me it's a generation mismatch, for you I see it's a gender mismatch :)

WSW said...

Totally agree with soul of alec smart.

I dug up my childhood best friend on facebook, added her to gtalk and within 5 lines found myself chatting to a stranger I had nothing in common with (this when we were inseperable as kids)

Madhurjya (Banjo) said...

@ WSW - You never had expectations as a child. Now you do. :)