Friday, April 20, 2007

Exchanges with Lungten


Lungten and I in front of our hostel (VIT)


Friendship
On my birthday L gave me a booklet in which she had written about our adventurous but happy times in India. She had left some pages at the last to be filled by me and the following is what I wrote in it.



It took me months to write down in this booklet. I indeed felt overwhelmed at that very moment to know what to write. Feelings were numerous and thoughts rang on…what I’m going to write is not going to be very different. We traveled the world together and in essence, everything is same, except that it is going to differ in the way we express.



Here I go. I look back over the years and try to remember everything in a moment of one thought. But, it is impossible to occur. Four years is not a short duration. We had the larger part of our lives spent in India. We did not cripple; we moved with the same resonance that Indians took.



When we stepped into the college that day on 14th August 2002, we were kind of frigid. We were not scared but we were a little afraid of the bigger responsibility that greeted us. We had it in our mind that we were there to carry out not a simple drama but to face the challenge of being bigger intellectual. Since then, we did not forget our responsibility. I in fact had many times when my determination faltered. It is because of L that I did not have to bear the blow of having failed my trusted people.



There were many times when we were made to feel bad. We were made to feel like we did not know what was going on in our life. But we were no fools. We might not have been as wise as them to perfect the deceit and beautify the falsity but we knew our steps. We knew we would absorb the shock even if something unlikely turned up. And turn up it did.



Tears didn’t wash away our sanity. Rumours did not falter our dreams. We treaded on just the way as it was. We knew what would matter more was what we had achieved, not what passed in the fancy of intermediate process.



We walked and we walked. We didn’t have to run; we knew our pace. If there were people trying to knock us off, we found our foothold. We had that intuitive wise-ness of being careful. I must have shed so many tears…not just of pain, but of guilt and frustration. This, now I see as lessons. Lessons they were of course. L taught me to stand strong and not to let tears deceive me. I also came to know that there is no one who truly cares about you if you do not care yourself. But L was different here. She did not leave me as let be…she pulled me up to see what was behind the wall of exam. I learnt rather too late to study; to really fight the exam. L constantly told me to be careful, to be sincere and to study what was needed. Most of the time, novels took me into the fantasy of wonderland and it wasn’t until very late that I really took time to study. One thing I’m so grateful to her is for being my mentor and a true friend. She patiently waited for me to learn and to let me see the truth of her words.



There was a time when she got upset and wouldn’t talk to me. I spent more time talking with Leki and I guess I wasn’t there when she needed me. She wouldn’t answer me and she wouldn’t even look at me. This went on for days. After things got to normal, I asked her what was wrong and she only said that she has this habit of going quiet. Though we traveled places together on break, and talked on matters so many, we were not really in the same circle of friends in the hostel. I and other Bhutanese girls ate and hung out together whereas L had Indian friends to laugh with. I appreciated her for being able to be at-home with them. It was my weakness not to be able to feel the same in their wings. I had Indian friends but I could never feel quite at home with them. You know what I mean? It just wasn’t the same.



No matter who we hanged out more with. When we came together, we were ourselves…talks would flow on; laughter would ripple the happiness around and we would forget the outside world. In the midst of serious studying, we would find songs in the rough papers and then sing them to the light. We would laugh and ask if we should dance and then get up…I’m talking about ‘mask dance’. You will say that it is for guys. When it comes to us, we do not really differentiate between who should do what. We do it and no ill omen comes. We laugh more rather.



Now we are working and we do not meet often. Often did I say? Forget it; we haven’t met in almost ages now. I have been thinking I should go to meet her one of these days. She will have a surprise soon. Karma and I will give her a visit.



L, she is easy to be with…comforts you and make you feel it is okay to be yourself. She can talk away your pain…she fits in, no matter what kinda person you are.She is that person who knows how to run with the world.



Happy '23' K!
Dearest K,If life were as easy as we expect it to be, you and I wouldn’t be standing together today to relish the ups and downs of this so-called life. But it isn’t as mild as we want, neither is it as easy to handle it single-handedly. Your presence in my days, especially over the past 4 years has graced my living in a way I can only thank. Thank you very much. If these words be enough to express my gladness of having you by my side, then let them fly in full magnitude to reveal the very depth of everything that I deem to convey. Or may be, I do not need to elaborate much, since you ain’t unaware of how you are always the better part of me. Yes, you being a part of my everyday existence grew my passion to be better, it helped me to see another person in me, someone I could relate as better. It meant a lot and it still does to have you as one person to whom I can say “Hey, I can lean on you, can’t I?”



Well K, I am bad, not in single way but in many, many ways. It’s not that I do not know. I do. Yet, I’m always the same. Am sure I hurt you more than anyone does. I feel sorry for both of us. I feel sorry for you because you bear me despite me being such a blunder. I feel sorry for myself because I don’t seem to learn at all. If it were any other person, you wuld have dumped our friendship years back. You being you stand by. This is one quality in you that I will always admire, appreciate, envy and regard highly. You make me feel disgusted at myself when I do not tend to understand either of us. I know you will say, ‘No L, it is not like this’. No, it is like this only. I’m bad and it is true. It does hurt to realize the truth. Accepting it is equally hurtful. Never mind. Your presence betters me. Now and ever. Thank you again. Ever.



Looking back to the days we have together brings me the biggest smile on my face, knowing that those were the days of ‘good times’. The by gone days of fun, memories, joy, laughter, enjoyment, jovial moods. Everything. Almost everything wonderful. Majestic. Hilarious. Enchanting. Bewitching. Spell-bound. Everything dear. Everything.



You are my most beautiful possession in a friend. Your friendship thrills me, more than I could actually ask for. You make me feel good, you make me feel best. That’s you, my eternal friend. That’s you, my good friend. That’s you, my trusted friend.



We being ourselves have brought lots of havoc and commotion amongst the multitude around. Never mind. People can’t be satiated with anything. Don’t have to heed the world around…just remain as you are. That’s the secret of true happiness. If we are to live for others, who are we then? We can’t just let this mundane world get our way of life. Think twice before you do anything. But do what you want to do. Not what someone asks you to. That’s called being yourself.



I know you are strong in your thoughts. You are one of a kind of person who can handle even the worst calamities. Yes, be that strong girl. Tears do melt you, still don’t let yourself drown in them. I do see you, (sometimes) as a girl vulnerable to changes. Like you tend to change, of course for good. Oh gosh, am losing track of what I’m talking!!!



Anyways. Well dear, you are about to enter a new phase of your life, a totally different one where your sense of responsibility is highly demanded. I have no doubt that you will take care of whatever may come your way. You are capable enough to whisk away hurdles and come out a better individual. Yet, as a friend, a good friend of yours, I have my set of concerns sent your way.



I won’t ask you to be cautious or to be careful. That would mean as if I am forecasting something unpleasant, which can never be true. I would rather wish you all the best of everything. I would want you to be good, to be matured, sensible, responsible, careful, modest and above all human. You don’t have to be the best, you just be who you are. Being human also means being good. That is what we all are meant to be. Good. Isn’t it? Life is better when you are human. So, be human. No doubt that you are a good human…still I feel like telling you over and again. That is just a reminder. A silly reminder perhaps.



Being responsible includes being good, that should ultimately result being best. Allow me to narrate something, a story our shercol warden once told me. She said:



“Once God gathered a huge crowd of people. He asked his counselors what they could see. That wasn’t an unusual task as all they could see was a multitude of people around. But God wasn’t be satiated with this answer. He took out a tiny bamboo shoot and asked his counselors to look through it. They did as instructed, one by one. And were alarmed at what they saw. In the crowd of people they saw with their naked eyes, here they saw all varieties of animals and only few people.” The moral of the story is: though we see around millions of souls whom we call humans, it is only few who are actually humans in the real term. Many of us have the inborn character of animals, skinned only to seem like people. My story isn’t to portray that you and I could be one, or maybe we are. (hehe…)



Rather, I wanted to convey that people can’t be themselves, they can only want to be themselves. So, my dear, the bottom-line is – “No matter where or with whom you may be, do not ever lose your ground of freedom, independence and voice-of-speech”. You are a good human in the crowd of people and it would hurt any of us if you were to tend to their ways of living. Having known you as an independent, self realistic woman, I should be judgemental enough to say that you could conquer the world one day. Just be who you are. That’s awfully enough. Beauty of life is ‘you’ and ‘you alone’. It is not anyone else, but you.



You and I
“No birth certificate was issued when our friendship was born. There was nothing terrible except the feeling that life became different and that our capacity to love and care has miraculously been enlarged without our effort. It was just like having a tiny apartment and somebody moved in with me. But instead of becoming cramped and crowded, the space expanded. And I discovered room I never knew I had until you moved in with me.”This is exactly what happened when I found your friendship. You appeared like a gust of wind from a nowhere direction. But unlike others, you stayed longer and perhaps forever. I felt myself awestruck with your appearance and instantly I loved it! I agree that we did have our share of ups and downs in the course of our friendship. Honest, there were times when I felt cruel and rude at you. I would not talk for hours and even days sometimes. That is me, I guess. You agree?



“When people are hurt, they want someone to lash airs at. Often it is someone they love because the people who love us are the ones who will forgive us, when it all blows over.” True, we take people for granted when we know nothing can keep us away. May be, few bruises and hurts. But that doesn’t count either. Once the blows are all over, you are back to who you were. Isn’t this the kind of commitment we have between you and me? Exactly. Anne Frank wrote: “I want friends, not admirers. People who respect me for my character and my deeds, not my flattering smile. The circle around me would be much smaller, but what does that matter, as long as they are sincere.”True to her words, you are one person who knows me best. There can’t be another soul who would bother to study me as much as you did over the years of our togetherness. With you around, I feel a new world of new things. There is always something wonderful to look forward to. There is always something hilarious to happen, all because you are ‘SINCERE’. Your sincerity brings everything to its highest mark and I can only feel grateful for it. Having you alone around me is wonderful. I feel no need of anyone else.



“It’s wonderful to have friends who accept you with all your flaws. I don’t have to wear a mask of perfection or material things to make me loved or accepted.” That is you to me.



“Twenty Three”
Well K, you are 23 now, an ideal age to display your responsibilities, not only to yourself but also the world in general. You have reached an age that demands utter responsibility from you. I know you can manage somehow, anyhow.



One thing is sure – you and I ain’t growing any younger anymore. It is a pity that we have lived this world for 23 years and yet, we seem non-existent! But dear, we are never too late to do anything, to learn anything.



“Even though the future seems far away, it is actually beginning right now. And while we are living in the present, knowing that we are becoming history with every work, every action and every deed.” Ya, future is just a breath away. Past simply fleets across our face. And while the present is very much alive in front of our eyes, let us make the best use of it. Live it. Enjoy. Make joy out of it. Create enjoyment. Relish the good times. Recreate the bitter ones. Forgive the wrongs. Rejoice the rights. Just do it. Just make it. Make it now. Here. Present. This moment. LIVE IN TODAY. Here you are – 23! Just enough to make everything come your way.
Dream dear, dream. Having a dream is not stupid; not having a dream is stupid. You are as old as the things you have done, yet as young as the most wonderful dream in you. 23 may seem a little old to be a kid, but the heart never knows how to grow old. 23, therefore seems ideal to start a very new life, grand one perhaps. And the best part of everything is – you are capable of tuning your life to the frequency that best suits you.



You are the soul proprietor of your life and only you have the access to make it seem into what you wish. Don’t let life get ways away from you. You be your own driver. Own master. This is called life – self life.



“We are all alive, but we don’t know why or what for; we are all searching for happiness; we are all leading lives that are different and yet the same. We have many reasons to hope for great happiness…but…we have to earn it. And that’s something you can’t achieve by taking the easy way out. Earning happiness means doing good and working, not speculating and being lazy.” – Anne Frank.(From the “Diary of a young girl”)Every chapter in your life should seem like a lifetime. Just make it look like that. And this could be achieved only if you tended to live life your way. Don’t ever forget that your life is yours and not anyone else’s.



23 sounds good to me. Below is a small sonnet I wrote for you:Come 23 and you are again another life.Be 23 and you are that woman of your dreams.See 23 and another world unfold for you.Let 23 and there you are – the woman of all times!!Well dear, I feel unusually elated as I think about the characters in you. And am truly in short of words to tell you how much your presence had groomed me.



Growing old is a fact we may not like. But being logical creatures, I feel we can make it good anyways. As each day passes, I fear I’m losing a moment to be together. I year passes and it saddens me more. Such is the utter pains of life, isn’t it?Fear not.Age is never a bar to anything. It is in fact a measure of how good one has been to the world at large. You being 23 now shows you have had 23 wonderful years on this earth. That should give you much appreciation, pleasure and smiles. Definitely, since you have been nurtured to grow up to be ‘this woman’. You are ‘this woman’ today because of what you were yesterday. All the credits for your growth falls back to the times you were before. And I know you have nothing to repent about. You being yourself have helped this world to grow into a better place. And few people like me have been extra fortunate to befriend you. Thank you K. “You strive to be the best in the world and there will be disappointments. But it is the ones that are always striving to keep focus that winds up prospering”. Mike Tyson.True. Keep striving harder each day. Who knows, one day you may conquer the world with your zeal and hard work.



Good Old Times
My dear K, such days of celebration give me the perfect opportunity to let you know how much you mean to me. Although I don’t miss a chance to let you know how good you have been to me.Vellore days shall remain the biggest chapter in my history. More because you are the co-creator of each day that I have been down there. From 14th August 2001 to 18th May 2005.
Days with you have been too marvelous and exciting. Exhilarating. Wonderful. Enchanting. Bewitching. Extremely good. Best. Exceptional. Just great. Simply accepting. Honest. Lively. Adventurous. Alarming. Full of joys. Laughters. Good time. Everything dear. Everything. Almost everything.



You were my truest companion for the past four years and are still. I can’t hope to look for another friend than you, for your friendship gave me quality and quantified good times. Our friendship stood the test of times. To ask for more would surely seem reckless. You are too much a gift to me. And at this climax of time, I can only thank you.



Our times together has left the most impressive impact on me and my history. Kerala, Mysore, Coimbatore, Bangalore, Chennai,Hyderabad,Calicut…see how much more of the uncharted world we saw together! I always looked forward to a new trip, when I knew the company would be you. You made the fun lot more good and interesting. Time flew past our faces when we were careless to handle it. But the little moments I had with you were simply wonderful. Today, they make a very good promising collection of an invaluable treasure of memories. “There is a language in the world that everyone understands, the language of enthusiasm, of things accomplished with love and purpose, and as part of a search for something believed in and desired.”The good old times with you keep me smiling for long. Happy Birthday. I won’t say more just ‘I LOVE YOU’. L

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