One Crazy Night…

Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down. – Oprah Winfrey

Scrolling through glimpses of my past captured in so many bytes of my phone’s camera roll, I came across pictures taken on one of the craziest nights I have spent in my life after college. Sharing this moment with a woman I recently started seeing marked a highlight in my conversations with her.

It all started with me visiting the place I graduated in. Its a big city also known as the ‘The Silicon Valley of India’. It had a beautiful airport waiting for me as I descended.

As soon as I stepped out the arrivals gate, I felt like I time traveled back to about 10 years ago minus all the bling spread across this amazing city. I took a deep breath as I soaked in my surroundings; The Sky-High buildings, swanky new hotels, pubs & cafes on every corner of the city & noisy vehicles that seemed to have out-numbered the number of people living there.

Soon enough I was surrounded by three of my best buddies with whom I have shared innumerable number of experiences; crazy, sad & happy. No matter the number of days we stay apart, or don’t talk to each other, we would always have each others back. Always.

It was pre-decided to make the most of the two days I had. As soon as the sun set, we went to our favorite joint that sold the best drinks in town. It was already filled with many students & IT professionals drowning away the stress of the daily grind in drinks, sharing stories & bitching about bosses.

We ordered a few beers & I decided to have Long Island Ice Tea. I was dared by the other three to have a Long Island Tower!

And thus began the craziest night of my life. As the level of the drink went down, I felt myself going higher & higher. We sang old & new tunes, danced on the tables till Mr Jones, the bartender, brought me down. I flirted with countless women & used every one-liner in the book. All I remember is laughing like a maniac the whole time. We decided to tour the town on just one bike one of us owned. Imagine the four of us on one bike! We toured the whole city this way – laughing, screaming & singing all the way.

The person who said, “The Best Memories come from Bad Ideas” is a true genius!

What this night represented was not the fact that we got high or that we broke so many rules in the process or the hangover we suffered through the next morning, but this night helped us all let go of the wrong moves in our careers & relationships, every heart break, every regret, every soul sucking moment in the past ten years.

I was soon pulled back to the present distracted by her beautiful dark brown eyes & her dazzling smile that filled my insides with a joy I knew I wanted to feel for the rest of my life. It was in that moment I knew what my future held & I finally felt the peace that had taken over me that night.

Advertisements

Ten Minutes

“One day spent with someone you love can change everything.” ― Mitch Albom

Every plan we made to meet & spend a few days together didn’t work out. It was like the universe conspired against us. Us, the soul mates, who were never meant to be together but will be together anyway (link). We fought against all odds & met for those precious Ten minutes before the bus left it’s stop.

Those Ten minutes felt like Ten seconds & Ten hours at the same time. Time came to a standstill when we hugged but in reality time was running out.

I had no words to say what I truly felt & yet I spoke about a million other things. We had ten minutes to register each others’ faces, to freeze this moment forever in our minds, to talk about things we had been through in the past few months, take pictures & say Good bye again.

This is what I wanted to tell you in those Ten minutes we had together.

Every minute I spend with you, I spend it in this magical land where there are Unicorns & Rainbows; a place similar to what they describe heaven to be. Every time you smile at me I forget what I was worrying about & anything that makes me sad. Every time to hold me in your arms I feel the burden on my shoulders mysteriously disappear.

You make me want to believe in myself again. You make me see the good in the world & overcome my fears. Every beautiful song I have heard in my life starts to play in the background. I notice the flowers on the sidewalk & actually stop to smell the scent of freshly cut grass. I feel free & want to dance till my feet give away & sing my heart out. I want to climb the highest mountains & swim in the deepest oceans. I want to run marathons & jump from helicopters.

I want to tell you that you are the best friend only the luckiest people in the world have & the person who changed the way I look at the world & made me who I am today.

You are my person.

I wish I didn’t have to leave. I wish I had the guts to forgo the responsibilities life has forced upon me, get off the bus & stay with you.

You should know that in another Life, at another Time & in another Place I would choose you.

If I ever see you again…

“And now we’re apart and you’re just some stranger who knows all my secrets and all my family members and all my quirks and flaws and it doesn’t make sense.” Gaby Dunn

Graduating from college can be extremely thrilling & at the same time extremely nerve-wracking. You are suddenly pushed off the cliff of a comfortable environment to one that is frighteningly unfamiliar. It was at this time, I met you. Amid hundreds of people sailing in the same boat, I found you.

My first impression about you was, similar to what I have for majority of the people I first meet; Strange. Sometimes you would smile & have an enjoyable conversation & the other times you would get aloof. I didn’t want any drama in my life that was already on a roller coaster ride, so I decided to stay away from you.

But just like in a scene from some chick flick, I ended up having to travel with you. Here you surprised me! All my initial assumptions disappeared into thin air. I was smitten. I felt like a 15 year old girl who had a long time crush on Justin Beiber & got to finally meet him. You made me laugh-cry; which is like the echelon of laughs in the laughter world. We also had a lot in common.

And so we became friends.

We had a lot of fun talking about all of your crazy adventures with your friends & professors from the times back in college. You were one of the first people I would discuss anything new in my life with. You would do the same with me. We would text constantly & gossip about everything from work to some common friends & bosses. (By the way, this was when I realized, in the right company, even men enjoyed Gossip!) This was during one of the high-points in my life.

Just as I began building sandcastles in the air that we were going to be together forever, the foundation of our friendship slowly started to crumble. Initially, you would “forget” to reply to a text or miss the occasional call till it started to become more frequent.

I guess this is what people talk about when they say, “Time gets in the way & people drift apart.” To them I would say that time doesn’t get in the way, it’s just that people change & sometimes accepting this change gets difficult & so people drift apart. It took a long time for me to understand this.

At that time I always sort of knew, but just never acknowledged the fact, that you weren’t interested in hanging out with me anymore but since you were the one familiar thing I had left in my new world, I would desperately cling on to you like a chewing gum to a boot sole. And as I tried with all my love & energy to stitch back the torn fabric of what we had, you would pull off the threads again & again till the last time we met.

Something in me knew that this day, this particular meet would be our last. We may text each other sporadically afterward but this would be the last day we would ever meet. One thing that gives me consolation now is that we at least smiled at each other when we parted.

Every now & then when I think about the past, I think about you & how, if I could do things differently, would everything have turned out if we were still together. It is quite a futile exercise, I know, but I just can’t help but wonder.

However, the one thing that I quite frequently ponder upon is what would I feel & how would I react if I saw you now? Would I just blatantly ignore you or give you a hug or maybe shake hands as though we were acquaintances? I’m not sure.

If I do see you again, I hope we wouldn’t behave as strangers who know each other & that I would be able to find that part in you that made us friends that day.

Her Inner Child…

 “The most sophisticated people I know – inside they are all children.” ― Jim Henson

Who is this inner child?
This is the child who lives within the deepest crevices of your soul. This child thinks with no limits, loves with fiery passion & lives in the moment. It is this child that gets those creative juices within you flowing. This child is free & knows no wrong. This child is optimistic & a dreamer. This child cries when it is hurt & laughs the next moment when it finds something that makes it happy. This little “brat” doesn’t dwell on past hurt or think about the future.

Every person, whatever their age or gender, has an inner child inside of them. In some, you can see this child in their bright & fun personalities, in some you can see this child hidden behind a sophisticated or pretentious personality reserved to be seen only by closest to them, & in some, you can see in their unsmiling eyes that they have forgotten that such a child even existed or they feel they are too “mature” to connect with this child.

Then there is she, who loved this child & was the happiest when she was connected with her. This child stayed with her when the whole world had turned it’s back on her. This child may have not understood the ways of the world but she always understood her & is her greatest support. This child relieves her of all the stress & seriousness that the world seems to be imposing on her as a way of living.

Then there came a time when everything changed. She was suddenly separated from everything familiar & she forgot about the inner child in her crying everyday for her love. On the outside it seemed as though she was strong & that she was fighting with a strength coming from Mother Earth herself. But on the inside it was another story all together. She was breaking down slowly. Many different soul crushing experiences made her withdraw from loving her inner child again.

When you looked into her eyes, you couldn’t see that brightness in her eyes that just lit the room when she smiled. You could her real self being eroded by the cruel & selfish around her.

One day, when her limits were long crossed, she started to cry. She cried till she couldn’t cry anymore, till all her tears dried up, till she could feel no more. She felt a peace & numbness within her that replaced the hate & love she felt.

She liked this numbness & it became her closest friend. So close that she ignored everyone around her. It never encouraged her to do anything nor did it give her joy. She could no longer feel & she lived this way till the day she met another within whom she saw his inner child shining through. This child called out to the one inside her.

This is when she looked within herself & found her inner child cowering, abused & neglected for so long. She took this child in her arms & promised that, come what may, she would never let go of her ever again. She slowly started to love again & let go of the numbness. It was quite hard & it took a long time for this numbness stuck to her like superglue.

It hurt letting go as she started to feel the rush of emotions in her heart again. She felt the sadness, happiness, the pain & love she evaded for so long. She felt it all. She soon realized with this love for herself & her inner child, she could face the world with a vigor & strength that felt as though she was blessed by the almighty him/herself. This inner child encouraged her to forgive the wrong done to her & to let go of everything hurtful & of the ones who wished the worst for her.

She started to find the smaller joys in everyday things however bad the day was, even if that day repeated itself for many years to come. She cried when she was upset & smiled when she was happy. Every action she took & every decision she made, made her happier than she had ever been before. The relationships that were broken due to the numbness earlier were now renewed with the love she had within her & they became stronger than ever. She felt confident & beautiful & it shone in her like a star in the sky. She had a super power that no heartbreak, bad experience or cruel words could ever snatch from her.

Every dark room she is in now, lights up with the brightness in her eyes when she smiles…

Strangers…

“Smile at strangers and you just might change a life.” ― Steve Maraboli

Strangers have a way to touch your life in a way one can never imagine.

I’ve had many amazing experiences with my close friends & family but the ones that have made a lasting impact on my heart & soul are the ones I’ve had with strangers.

There was a young man who helped me walk in the flood safely to the train station, another one who gave up his seat because he saw what a terrible condition I was in, the young teenage boy who spoke to the police in their local language & stayed with me till they arrived when I accidentally brushed against a car.

There was a Rickshaw driver who dropped me till the nearest bus stop when he saw I was struggling with a big bag in the heavy rain & didn’t even charge me anything, there was that bus conductor who stalled the bus when he saw me running towards it & a small boy, a few years older to me at that time, who gave up his blanket when I got sick on the plane.

There was a stranger who I became friends with the moment we met & who turned my life around.

These strangers didn’t have to do whatever they did for me, they had no obligations or responsibilities towards me but yet they spent those few moments of their life to help me even though I never asked for it. They restored my faith in humanity.

Strangers also make the best secret keepers. Sometimes you can share a part of yourself or your deepest secrets with them & you’ll never see them again. They will forever carry it around with them. Just as you give up a part of yourself, someone else would give a part of themselves to you that would fill the missing part.

I believe that we are all connected through these broken pieces.

There is an aura around each & everyone. We don’t meet everyone in one lifetime but when you close your eyes, clear your mind & open your soul, you can listen to the beats of billions of hearts& feel the glow of billions of souls inside of you.

Sometimes when one’s aura complements yours, your gut instinct starts to push you towards that stranger & that’s when you meet your best friend or your partner for life.

Everyone we meet, crosses our path for a reason. Even if the meeting is brief, there actually maybe a bigger show playing in the background & we could just be the Antagonist,Deuteragonist, Tritagonist, the Narrator, a Supporting Character, one of the Group Members or the Audience in someone’s life.

When a stranger shares an episode of their life, you can live through their experience in that moment. More often than not, it’s always worth it.

As Rod McKuen has said, “Strangers are just friends waiting to happen”. You may never always end up being friends but strangers have a way of changing your life or getting you to feel something that you couldn’t have ever pictured feeling.

So look around you, keep your heart wide open & speak to different people, read different blogs, initiate a conversation on the train or the bus, make pen pals (or in this digitized world, make a friend online on Twitter or some other medium) & you may run into your Future Best friend, an Experience of a Lifetime or a Lesson for life…