Sep 25, 2008
Of first impressions and friendships
Did I ever tell you about the first time I met She? She was in a lime yellow salwar kameez and her long hair tied in a plait along with Motu Boy as they came to greet the First Yearites or rather just to get a feeler on how the Freshers were. They came and asked us questions like “ so how many people from Delhi in this class?” and a couple of hands went up and when Motu very loudly asked in Bengali “ And many people from Kolkata?” the majority put up their hands. Sigh! That first day in college the places where one came from and the schools one studied in were so significant. When I look around and note the number of friends I am surrounded with and still close to after having gone through our very own ups and downs as friends over the years it hits me that darn we have come such a long long way. My first impression of She was darn this senior is really friendly and sounds righteous too, the kinds who'd disapprove of the likes of me. Besides she seemed to carry the “ I am from Delhi” tag and I couldn’t ever relate to the city centric identity until I came to know her from very close quarters and now I know exactly from where it came from.
Motu and I come from the same city but I wouldn’t have been too friendly with a senior because he was still from La Martiniere and in the school circle they were considered to be the biggest snobs more so cos we also considered ourselves to be snoots of the highest order and I was pleasantly surprised to meet a guy who was so down to earth and who did not have Martinian written all over him. Though yes he’d still tease me incessantly declaring how his school is the best one and make fun of mine even today.
I wouldn’t have been friends with Fino and Red Head too if I hadn’t shed my initial inhibitions about only sticking with those first week pals in college. And they always seemed to be way cooler, you know the “these girls are different” feeling that one gets. ;-) Red Head and Fido Dido carried the “Doon” and “ Sanawar” placards respectively besides having “We are from BOARDING SCHOOL and so we have seen more of the world and so we are way cooler than you ” written all over them heheheh! Fino never had any of these tags, or did she? Miss Balanced maybe. Later when I became firm friends with Red Head and Fino we’d laugh on what we thought the other was and how it turned out to be eventually.
I was “Miss I am lost little girl” and on my forehead in big bold letters was written “I am so much in love with Fido Dido” or after a couple of months it changed to “People I am heartbroken” . Bloody rubbish. I so revelled in self pity. Nobody would have wanted to hang around with me then considering the fact that half my time was spent moping around and shedding buckets and buckets of tears.
I never speak about Miss Touch Me Not . I remember her sitting on the railing of her terrace as the rest of the clan practiced for the Adam and Eve dance. She seemed untouchable, distant. The kinds who’d freeze in an instance if rubbed the wrong way. I use to be terrified of even carrying on a conversation with her lest I angered her. How times change. Now I am always one of the first people she confides in.
I think of Akku and I remember how appealing and vivacious she was when she came to Red Head’s place and giggled over everything and anything. She’d gotten me the prettiest bouquet of pink flowers on my birthday. On our second meeting we were dancing on the Boom soundtrack all day and by evening we were head banging at Thousand Oaks. We sealed the deal that day way back then and somehow have always kept in touch constantly without fail.
Fido Dido as I mentioned before was the public school types and everytime you passed by him or he crossed you one would hear DOSCO DOSCO DOSCO! Heheh! I remember the first day of class and how each one of us had gotten up introducing ourselves and when his turn came he gets up and says in the haughtiest manner that he is from Doon School. I thought well I really don’t like snooty guys from Doon who act as if the rest of us from day schools are inferior, only to fall for him and to start seeing him a week later. Almost a decade down the line Fido Dido and I are friends, true friends and it does seem unbelievable sometimes.
I met Batty Woman for the first time the last day of exams in our First Year of Law School. Everyone was elated and relieved that it was over Law of Contracts being the last paper. I hadn’t bothered studying for it cos I hated the very sight of that book. I knew I was gonna flunk this paper and had to give it again. I was grumpy and down in the dumps. Red Head followed me to my house cos she knew I’d been crying and compelled me to come out partying with her and Fino and a couple of Fino’s friends from her hostel. Batty Woman was one of them. I was so disgruntled that evening and the sight of happy people who gave their Contracts exam properly wasn’t helping my cause. Batty Woman was excited and giggly and on hind sight sweetly jumpy and danced moving her head and her long black hair in a rhythmic pace just as she does now. I sat and made faces at all of them all evening as they got tipsy turvy. Hahahah!A year later we bonded over one silly movie after the other and have always managed to find each other despite having shifted courses, jobs and cities.
This post would be incomplete without mentioning SMM. I have known her since we were 12 years old. We use to travel by the same school bus and lived in the same defence colony. She was a gangly specy pre teenager and I was the plump specy pre teenager. I thought she was the outspoken kinds and I was the quiet types. Yes but we did ogle at the cute guys in the colony together.;-) However we were acquaintances more than friends. We’d play together in the evenings once in a while but we lead different lives with different sets of friends. We weren’t in touch for a couple of years which is so predictable both of us coming from Defence backgrounds but landed up in the same college. 5 years spent there in the same city in vicinity of each other and we must have exchanged a couple of sentences until we bumped into each other in Delhi rather we bumped into each other’s blogs and here we are. I can smugly say that without our blogging we wouldn’t have been thick friends. Don’t you think so Sup? :D
First impressions aren’t necessarily the last ones and I have ended up befriending or being befriended by the last people I ever thought I People whom I have stumbled upon just by chance and struck close ties with and it never ceases to amaze me that the lengths we’d go to keep these ties secure, time and distance barriers are bypassed with ease, misunderstandings and fights pale in comparison to the wondrous times shared with these friends of mine. By the end of it none of this made any difference as we learnt how to look beyond the superficialities and as you scratch the surface you realise we are way more similar than different. Similar things make us happy, we go through the same trials and tribulations in different ways and hell we can relate to each other even after all these years of having chosen different paths and we'd still be this one bunch of shiny happy people like we were and still are.
It’s easy when you don’t try
Going on first impressions
You’ve seen me at my worst
And it won’t be the last time I’m down there
Read me like a book
That’s fallen down between your knees
I want you to know I feel completely at ease.