While clearing my closet after all these years
Memories of you and me tumble inside my head…
June 2005. That was the last when we met. I must have accumulated a hell of a lot of good karma whose positive outcome was all at once doled out to me on that strange day. In the sweltering heat of Mumbai city, we spotted each other precisely at the same moment on the bustling Andheri* suburban railway station. One look at her and I knew she was in a tearing hurry just like me. But she looked at me taking in every pixel of my face and before I could complete saying “hey, it’s fine, we’ll catch up soo….,” she said she had cancelled her pressing appointment. You really don’t stand any chance against girls with betty's eyes, do you? In whichever stage of life, they meet you. We were now onto a city bus seating close to each other heading for her apartment. It would take us over an hour to reach her place. Neither of us was in any hurry. Catching up on so many things just like we did when we used to meet after winter and summer breaks back in the university days. Right then, I too had invested all of my spirit and senses in every passing moment that was to come my way in her cheerful and loving company one last time that day. These moments are special because somehow deep down you know at once, they are not going to come back again. And I didn’t want to let go of these, even if that meant staying awake for a couple of hours more to complete the next day’s show script. There was no point in thinking about what had gone wrong between us in the past. Nor was there any time for this then. But there was that shimmer of hope somewhere in my hearts of heart that maybe, just maybe she had made up her mind and now wants to come back to me. After all, her new relationship just didn’t work out. So hot-headed was her temperament, it may surely not have been possible for the poor soul to keep up with it. She seemed to be bubbling inside, as usual, to speak out her mind and take me through her roller-coaster journey in the last two years. But then, her face also looked solemn as if lost in some thoughts. Till the time we reached her empty flat, she kept prodding me to tell her all that I was up to. I told her about my experiences ranging from living a tough life earlier working as an assistant to a tyrannical director to working as a ghostwriter under my new weird woman boss. The more I told her the more she wanted to know every detail of it, especially about the latter. Like old times, she neighed with laughter on every sentence I uttered. I could sense her curiosity to dig out more as we approached the destination. Once securely inside, we made ourselves comfortable in the cozy hallway of her rented one-bedroom hall flat. But then suddenly we fell silent as if facing the naked truth that existed around us. Even today I distinctly remember the taste of the piping hot tea while it had started drizzling outside. And then I popped the one nagging question which was screaming to get out of me. How did you guys meet and click with each other? Her reply matched exactly with one of the many templates I had prepared and kept ready in my mind. Back on the campus, it now emerged, the smart bastard from the management discipline had applied SWOT analysis after being aided by one of our vamp classmates. Irrespective of their gender, don’t you have these in every story, who solely exist on this planet to spoil your party? By the way, I never could fathom back in my university days that though I was the protagonist of my own story, by virtue of my story universe one day I was destined to cross paths with this forsaken character as well. Back then I wasn’t aware of the metaphorical concept of ‘looking well after your garden at all times’ as explained by the inspirational author Florence Scovel Shinn in many of her writings. Coming back to my predicament, I now learned that he had asked her straight away for a drive to the nearby picturesque hilly spot. Thus I stood beaten hands down in the hard-cash arena and was out in the first round itself, I surmised. Consequently came the perfectly logical sequence of how their thoughts matched and hearts connected. Well, here it was absolutely inconsequential that waves from our hearts had also matched in Act I. So be it, no qualms. I sincerely wished her a happy conjugal life ahead when she mentioned she’d be flying out to the USA in a month’s time and I saw the futility of nurturing any false hopes further. And then I suddenly realized the emptiness of this rendezvous. There was nothing left in it for me anymore. I sensed she wanted to express her gratitude for the good time we had spent but I was not in a mood to let her have the cake and eat it too. Looking back that might appear selfish, but as a young romantic youth, I could definitely discount that surge of feelings choking my mind that instance and for the rest of my life. It’s been eighteen years since then. I hope by now I might have again accumulated enough good karma points to bump into her just like that. Only this time, in Act III, I will surely click a nice selfie with her and her kids.
Hey, this story was in response to a poetry prompt by the dynamite of a writer Ravyne Hawke in Promptly Written where she says “What is going to make December fun is that you may use fiction prompts to write poetry and poetry prompts to write fiction!” P.S: These and many more of my feelings are beautifully expressed by one of my all time favourite December songs Angelia by Richard Marx and here you will find its lyrics : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gO2Wu3mKi-c And yes, I am truly inspired by the novel writing techniques of award winning thriller author Mike Slavin on Medium.