Like Mum, Like Dad
My dearest Juli,
You have never said any of this but I know it well. That you cannot love me any lesser than you love me now, with all your heart, deeply and so helplessly. I know I give you many reasons to challenge that but on such occasions you’ve only probably been worried about me, or mad at me, or disappointed in me, or sad for me but there hasn’t been a moment when I felt this friendship of ours is diluting even by the least per cent, that you love me any lesser today than yesterday – there hasn’t been a moment Juli when I didn’t think of you when sad, happy, bored, in pain, in anxiety, in depression, in anger, in my stupidity! There hasn’t been a moment when I sought you and felt you were too distant from me. You are always by me, that gives me all the strength in the world.
Over the past year you were with me through each one of my big experiences, the massive heartbreak, the occasional misunderstandings at home, my deep continuing pain that I have been carrying for a long time now. You dress my wounds with such gentle care and you inspire me to go after my dreams, you rejoice with me even on the silliest occasions when I am happy for no reason and you also make me comfortable with my own pace which is often far behind from the world that we live in.
It wasn’t a surprise that you promised to visit me in London, all the way from Vienna but it was certainly a pleasant shock when you said – there’s no doubt you would come to see me even when things got a little problematic, expensive tickets and policy issues. I know you are fighting your battles silently, of missing India, of coping with academics and the disappointment people around you have caused, I know how these things must be torturing you and yet you listen to my often empty stories and smile with me, you go to wherever I want to go, do whatever I want to do, always putting me on the top. I am not a stranger to your heart in any way, I know exactly what you are going through and what you are gifting me despite the difficulty surrounding it. I can only thank you with a promise of a friendship as pure and true as you are.
You reminded me of my daddy on our first train ride in UK when you said I should take the window seat. I am too old now for window seats but was instantly taken back to the sweetness of my childhood when you said ‘you sit by the window’ – my daddy used to do that when we took buses to go to my grandfather’s village, that’s the last time I remember wanting a window seat and someone offering it! Since then there were so many rides but none so innocent that I could enjoy the window seat. I have never had anyone take single pictures of me for their keepsakes except my mom! Ammi takes pictures of me sometimes with her mobile camera and keeps them, I don’t know why, I never asked, I didn’t ask you either why you took so many single pictures of me on my holiday for your keepsakes – I think there can’t be any reason but affection – how you melt my heart with these extremely special things you do.
I can’t tell you how much I miss you today, I am sure you know. However, I can tell you that I am making all plans to be in Europe this December. Our friend Denis of Liverpool told me yesterday that his New Year’s Eve isn’t always special but he will be glad to see us, would you be interested in making this sweet human being happy? I think I hear your answer!
These are just a few words of thanks for the gift of your company on my holiday to Britain , I could write a book titled ‘My Dearest Juli’ on the other things.