Happy Birthday Cuckoo - my closest friend 24 years ago from whom I separated 20 years ago before emails and outlook came into the picture. We met for 5 minutes 14 years back and sent each other couple of emails 2 years back.
I am quite sensitive too many times for my comfort.
Dear friends P&P left Germany permanently for India last weekend. I never thought before they left that a lump would form in my throat and that my eyes would well up as it did when we waved goodbye at the airport. I thought of the last year wasted for nothing - spending weekends here nurturing friendships that did not last instead of building the strong one that grew there - a deep sense of loss that grew again today when writing to her. Hostage at the table says before letting go there is a grieving period. My grieving period always lasts long - very long.
Any reference to my grandfather who died in 1994 brings a wave of emotions in me still and it is still 14 years. He used to take me with him for the concerts and the dance performances - happy once when I wore the saree the first time to one of the concerts - perhaps seeing that I was now a young lady. Perhaps that explains my love for wearing sarees.
Ever since these friends of mine shifted to Germany I have been in a different phase of my life, preparing to move out of Germany into a new way of life. Subsequently I left and met them just for weekends and probably about 12 times a year. Last couple of months though, we met almost every weekend. Perhaps there was a reason why things happened the way they did: when they left the summary was apt - like the conversation between this friend P and Parmanu "A phase of life was over".
The last few weeks the thought about phases of life has been occurring to quite often.
The phase before I moved to Bangalore when Wannabe and I spent a lot of time together having been thrown out of secure college into the big bad world out there supporting each other through the changes as we transitioned from young girls in the phase of education to grown up ladies with responsibilities. And then one misty morning i got down from the train at the Cantonment station in Bangalore where my Aunt and Uncle waited to pick me up to take me to my new apartment shared with 4 girls.
There was the phase when we were not yet married and I was in Bangalore. I used to wake up early morning, from the mattress on the floor of bedroom of a nice apartment I shared with 4 other girls - Honey, a dear friend and three more whom I barely knew. We got ready and I rushed out to take the shuttle to work - the second person after Veena getting into the white shuttle. The shuttle then picked up many people on the way - the husband P amongst them. It was a small shuttle and everyone knew everyone quite well and chatted freely. In the evening, I took the shuttle back but got off earlier at the old office of our company where Parmanu worked. While waiting for Parmanu, the shy extrovert that I used to be spent sometime chatting with some of the people in the older office. That was a phase.
We got married and we shifted to a new apartment. I spent most weekends travelling to Chennai to give support to my bed-ridden mother and my sister who looked after her. Parmanu and I hardly had time together the some part of the first year - weekends spent apart, weekdays returning very late at night. Then that phase ended with a trip to Germany.
Life in Germany had its phases too - The time when we used to have breakfast at home, then having breakfast at work separately... lunch together daily for few years and then thinking it is time to build other interactions and having lunch with the respective teams. Different people in the apartment opposite, each of them moving out after having children and these children outgrowing the apartments, while we stayed in the same place for 8 years (we met one of the couples at a supermarket 3 weeks back - she did not recognize us - he having worked with Parmanu many years back did) and then there was the employee of the year who also shifted out to be replaced by a Russian couple who are still there).
There was a time when Hardu was in Bruchsal - picking her up from there every Friday evening and dropping her back every Sunday until she moved to Saarbrucken became a routine. In the early years we always took B3 to Heidelberg and later (now too) always take B291 - I find we are taking the autobahn more often - is this yet another stage?
A time when we went to "Real" to do our shopping - what can I say now - I am just there 12-24 times a year and each time I visit a different place besides I think Real does not exist anymore. A time when I went to SBK Markt in between my Swiss stinct the lady there told me:
"Haven't seen you lately"
and I could only be astonished that to her I had never been a faceless customer though we had hardly spoken to each other before.
and now here we are: shuttling every weekend one to another place - me taking the route via Luxembourg more often and Parmanu via Köln. When P&P left, I really felt it was a shutter in a phase of life - I first felt strongly about the need to move to a new apartment to shake off the melancholy completely. I feel it is time to start a new phase though perhaps the only thread of continuity of 8 years has been the small apartment - the longest thread for any continuity in my life.
In this world of people talking about mistakes in the current situation of the markets does this quote hold true? In this year, when I made many mistakes (seems to be the same story year after year... ), this quote struck me. From the mistakes I made - I am sure happy to have made those mistakes... - I would rather have learnt my lesson from those mistakes than not have had the experiences for the fear of making the mistake.
"A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable but more useful than a life spent doing nothing." --George Bernard Shaw, Nobel laureate in literature
So in any case it looks like years before I learn to understand myself and until then perhaps I will keep making mistakes.
beginning to understand myself. But it would have been great to be able
to understand myself when I was 20 rather than when I was 82." --Dave Brubeck, American jazz pianist
To fight fatigue and Monday blues I opened my laptop and started searching for Business Cases - a mail in my inbox gave me the perfect excuse to procrastinate. On giving my date of birth I received a sample Tarot reading. I wonder whether all people born on same day as me will have the same one. Wannabe - better watch out for your daughter.
Before Sunset ends on hope - somehow seems to tie up what started but never finished. Two people who never spent much time together but when they talk everything else around seems to stop and time seems to fly... and it seems to be as if even I cannot imagine a time when the conversation will stop. I am anxious that the 7:15 will come, I am anxious that the driver will come, I am least anxious about the missing the flight - more anxious that Jesse will be on the flight.
The topics are of conversation of wide ranges, they do not seem to agree on most of it - yet there is an understanding, a feeling underlying all the time about not wanting to leave - of being completely involved, of touching one another deep inside.
Based in my favourite city and starting at Shakespeare and Company (Honey, I still have the picture of us in front of this one taken in 2000), my favourite looking bookstore, it starts in a slow pace, introducing us to the awkwardness of meeting after a long time. I doubt I will have such reunions, yet the feeling is still captured.
This dialogue hit hard (if you have not watched the movie it "might" be better not to see this one ... but she bursts out so beautifully.. I really like the spirit and what she said - hmm.. perhaps one part of me will always be a teenager)
and this song remained on my mind long after the movie was done. Both brought tears and I was happy for the darkness.
A couple of weeks back I was looking through some "Kaikottikali" videos and wishing I could be far off in Kerala to celebrate. When I looked at the pictures of the celebration of Onam in the temple my parents frequent in the US, for the first time I wanted to shift to US (well... for this it would be better to move to my home town - right?). In anycase I am storing here two links I want to remember always. There is a lip sync problem with the video so it is better to close your eyes and listen.
- here is Kuttanaadan Punchayilley in American Malayalam.