When you get used to distances, even proximity seems too far! I felt like I was in an island of friends, with my own piece of land for myself and none to share. It was sort of a blessing that I could enjoy all this. I have had my share of distances and spaces and it was time I redefined certain boundaries.
I would say it was a dream, come true, when I found that there were people to care for, when I stepped into the outside world alone. If there are only seven in the whole world, who would say beginning of corporate life was the best part of their lives, I would be their leader shouting that out to rest of the world. It was a bigger dream come true or even a miracle, when someone cared for me in return. I had always believed that there was a margin bordering the difference between ego, attitude and arrogance. He was that margin personified and walking around as a six foot man with a mission to keep people around him happy, dreaming, in glee and totally in awe. I had always had his shoulder to lean on, when in despair, when low on hope and whenever I wanted to feel safe. He had always lent a ear to all that rambling I went on with, that would never stop no matter what time of the day it was. We had been connected even when I was away and I cursed myself for misjudging the beautiful friendship, the first time I did.
A slightly heavier lunch and an overload of reasons to think, seem to make me travel back to my memories of good old days a little more than always. In spite of the crystal like memory I boast of, it’s been years since I thought back at all these. I thought I wasn’t strong to handle it, but now I know nobody else could have handled it any better. Thank God, I know am doing great. This feeling makes me special to myself every single day.
As I checked the mails that have filled my inbox, over the lunch time I was out, on a lunch date with myself and my favourite katti rolls, I ran through all the replies to his wedding invite, he had sent to the team. I had wished him with a one liner, “Hearty congrats to the happy couple!” and I have seen him look disturbed from then on. He knows he has not yet lived up to all the four keywords in my reply. He was hurrying into a marriage he thinks would help him forget his past, he knew he was wrong, still he knew that was his only way out as a favour to himself.
He was not one of a kind. I knew of another who could not have been any nicer. I have always been lucky to meet the best of the people. I have always been blessed with their love and affection. When there’s and extra element of care added to the equation I have felt like a princess. I had asked him, not so clearly, not so obviously, nevertheless asked him, if we were just friends. He had not replied. I had assumed I had got it all wrong and blamed myself for questioning the purest of friendship that ever blossomed on mother earth. I thought as much, till I was once asked the same by another person. I then knew how tough it was to answer when asked. I also knew I had an obligation to answer and clarify at once. I answered with a “No”, I meant “We are just friends” and then we were clear and great friends now. This was when I was away for a year, just before I had to come back.
I had come back right when he had planned to take up an onsite offer. I had felt heavy about his plans getting postponed. I knew he had no choice. I had still wanted a status check and tried to be a little more explicit when I asked him this time. “I need to know if am going to be on the top of your priorities right now. I need to know if I can be happy to wait.” He didn’t reply. I knew he had meant he had other priorities on his head and he couldn’t think of me and his life together then. He didn’t realise we were getting older. I understood his stand and felt bad for understanding a little too much. I was relieved I had asked, else would have always assumed without any reason that his response would have been what I wanted to hear. He was not one of a kind. If I had met him, and another, I know there would be others. Just that I also knew I wouldn’t anyways bother myself to care.