Friday, April 23, 2010

Collage-N Part 1

The almost end to another...something week. What something? I paused there for a good 30 seconds, trying to find the right word - automatically, I was about to write 'amazing', but it wasn't just that, it was, but amazing just doesn't cut it. Whatever it has been, it's worth capturing in words. But what truly need to be captured aren’t the events, which are just the landmarks, but the emotions which are the real journey.

I wonder if it's just me, but why do the oddest things always seem to happen to me; the inexplicable sort?

Those who know me ('well', should I append?), also note this, somewhat independent of my own experience. Some think I've got spirits with me, some think I've somehow got intuitive powers beyond normal, I don't know. This reminds me of how far back it goes - back to the start of high school and all those little coincidences that summed up my 'luck'. Noticing the Indian girl across the room on the first day of French class, because she had a mole on the left side of her face, and thinking, or rather, feeling 'click': recognition. Not that I even knew who she was at all - it was the first time in my life I laid eyes on her. But I knew that if I didn't know her then, I would definitely know her well soon. I don't know how I knew, but I did. Later when we ended up sitting in the same place at lunch, we realized that we had the exact same shoes - same colour, same cheap desi deal brand: "Bonjour" brand (and that too, we first met in French class!).

A few days later into our friendship, we also came to learn we both had profound affection for LM Montgomery's books - namely Anne of Green Gables, and we both loved them as strongly for the term that beckoned to us - 'kindred sprits'. No other terms could be so aptly applied to what we shared - because of course we were friends, we were best friends, and would remain so for 6 years, but more - and that much more did not need to be put into words. That was one of those few relations where I started learning that sometimes you have the feeling without knowing what it is, until you meet the person who can provide you with the right word. And sometimes it's you with the word, without understanding what it is until you meet the person who can teach you both.

And maybe, sometimes they teach you without understanding what it is themselves, without knowing that they in fact showed you everything it could possibly mean.

As I went through life from the moment on, I met people, and I made friends. And did I make friends. As one of the best I've had till now once pointed out, for some reason everyone liked me, or likes me. I try to say this as humbly I can, as without vanity or ego I can, by looking at myself from an outsider perspective, and- I like myself. I like myself because I try to be the 'goodest' I can be. Granted, I am not an angel, no, rather, I am not a saint, I am not Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, nor am I without my weaknesses and well, imperfections. But I do try my best. And so ... I make friends. Sometimes I find myself surprised by people's easy reaction towards me. It could be the rudest customer on their worst day, it could be guys trying to hit on me, it could be complete strangers and still somehow they walk away smiling or saying 'she's a nice girl!'. And I get this surprised feeling that hey, why does this always happen to me? Even if I go on walks with my sister, walking down the park paths, or along a beach walk, my sister watches as every person who walks towards us smiles at me, and she always comments on it in that 'what the heck' fashion of hers, and I just shrug and laugh it off, cause what else can I do?

It's a pleasant feeling, I am not complaining, but it has me thinking - why do people like me? Maybe God has his hand above my head. Maybe?

I know that it has something to do with my personality and outlook in life (well, duh). I know, if perhaps I lapsed into being sarcastic all the time, or tried being smartassed all the time, or more blunt then surely these phenomenon would vanish... as I just read - "You might find life more tolerable if you learned to speak to people in a civilized manner."

Mostly, we get what we give. Not always, but fore the most part. I have found that the more open-minded you let yourself be, without letting yourself lose any part of your own principle, the easier life goes. "Civility costs nothing and buys everything". The things we might let affect us are usually not worth half the effort. The people who hurt us are those we let be important to us. Or, those who are important to us are those who can hurt us. Those who aren't important aren't worth letting affect us. And those who are important should know better.
It's vaguer in reality because that's just how reality rolls.

The thing is, you learn from the past- or hopefully, you do. You should. Otherwise, what a damn shame. How could anyone throw all that away? As (one of) my favourites goes "Live for this moment, this moment is your life." Imagine forgetting that past - life itself lives on in those memories and there you go, throw away your life? Everything you are today is all the you's you have been; all those you's you were from every yesterday. And like music, every memory of the note that just faded into the past lingers to attach itself to every new note, to produce the beauty of the entire song. How could on appreciate it if all you could remember was only the one note you hear now? One note, over and over - monotone, because there is no memory. So how could one appreciate the beauty of your own song, your song that is your life, if you could not recall the music you left behind?

So where is this all leading to you might wonder? Life, music, friends, superpowers? I seem to be all over the place, don't I? On the contrary, it's all part of a whole. You might forget the forest to see the trees. But it does not mean the forest ceases to exist.

People today may like me a lot. But I can say that while more people like me, less like me more than people once did. Confusing ain't it.

I've learnt that there is something magical called Kindred Spirits. From a word in a book I read in childhood, I learnt it can exist. But I learnt that there will be those that can last only so long. There are those who take up your every moment from the moment you meet. But like a firework display, it comes to an end, though spectacular it was.

There are those who you meet, and you feel the connection and little by little you share a consistent friendship. But like a candle, it has its flickers and could, depending on the force of the wind, go out, but if it withstands even that, eventually still it consumes the length of its candlewick and dies out.

There are friendships that are there when you are alone, or need help, or suchlike. And like a lightbulb, you get light when you need it in the dark, and with a flick of a switch, you can choose when to flick it on, flick it off. But every lightbulb has its own lifespan before the bulb blows - and soon you'll replace it with a different one.

Then you have those amazing, beyond words friends- the friends who are as magical as the stars, those you can't see all the time, but you know are there. And that special star, the one closes, while physically so in analogy, not necessarily so in essence, but certainly closest to one's heart: the Sun. The bestower of sunshine, giver of warmth when cold, restorer of life, provider of energy.

There isn't one type. There can't be. For something as unique as this couldn't be easily replaceable. Every snowflake is different. Every sunrise is different. Every rainbow is different.

And I have learnt that at some time, the snowflake melts, the sun sets, and the colors fade away.

It can hurt, of course it can. Of course it does.

"I think it happens to everyone as they grow up. You find out who you are and what you want, and then you realize that people you've known forever don't see things the way you do. And so you keep the wonderful memories, but find yourself moving on. It's perfectly normal."

My first 'kindred spirit" and I shared 6 incredible years as 'best friends. Eventually our paths diverged. The thing is, when I look back, I can't regret that we ever did meet, because I can trace how I've met every other subsequent special person in my life through a series of 'endings'. Now that I'm here, and looking back, I'm actually pretty thankful for all I have endured, because I've learnt how to appreciate the people who mean a lot to me, and I have learnt how not everyone who seem to matter at first will matter in the end 0 that sometimes you meet some people only to go through an experience and learn that other people who've simply been there through it mean more than you realized, that some people have to come and go for you to realize that some people will always be there. And one of the best things about these best people, you don't really need to say anything. How can anyone who has experienced this kind of friendship say they don't believe in magic?

A week's recap

A best friend having a dramatic breakdown: ready to break up with her bf, ready to quit her job and go to Pakistan. Because her bf ate lunch when she didn't. Avoid being put in the middle of your two best friends when they're bf-gf at all costs.

The feeling of my 5 year old music student crawling into my lap after 'practising' for 2 minutes straight and telling me "I finish", and continuing to sit in my lap while I teach the other kids, and then him announcing the other kids aren't singing loud enough. Priceless. Avoid avoiding bache at all costs.

Half moon nights with stars so bright and figuring out Gal Sun is exactly as long as it takes to walk home from the bus stop to the front door, perfect to the second.

Sunny mornings with the birds. Priceless.

At the end of the week: my worst dushman, the number of classic moments cannot explain the strength of dushmani feeling you leave me with. I totally nafrat you and all I can say is three special words: 'jingle jingle jingle.'

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