For my best friend, Mawii.

Dear Mawii,

I have desperately tried to write you a blog post (as per request, but I always intended to anyway) about our three years together battling the duhs and dumbos (too many out there) and embracing the drugs and drinks (but not enough) of Delhi. I have tried, and tried again, and failed spectacularly each time. This is probably why I haven't been able to update my blog for months on end. I began berating whatever little skill I believed I had as a writer, because what is the point of being able to write, if you can't write about something that means a lot to you.

This is the crux of the matter: I finally discovered something (you, me, you-and-me) that I could not write about. The cigarettes I have smoked over this have only hastened my slide towards death, but don't feel too bad. It was either that, or a plane plummeting down to the bowels of the earth.

It's been a few months since college. No more sitting under the dhaba tree whining about our sad little lives, no more sipping nimbu pani and sneaking cigarettes by the shed, no more hauling our world wearied bones off to Kamla Nagar to comfort ourselves with Food. No more waiting at the corner under the merciless sun for merciless autos to take us back home, no more spending slow hours in the ridge, on a rock, with one eye out for monkeys. No more assignments to write, no more assignments to not-write, no more classes to sit through, voices droning on-and-on-and-on, no more Roy tutorials to be silent in. No more dinners comprising that fucking chappati and paneer, which I will hate for the rest of my life, no more uncouth hordes of savages elbowing us out of the dinner line, and no more having to share bathrooms with diseased people. No more deaths-by-mosquito, no more lizards slipping through the fan, no more long drawn out power cuts, and no more having to listen to Raju telling us to quit smoking. No more Rajesh and Krishna banging on the door, no more ineffective coolers, no more waking up at eight in the morning to that fucking John Mayer singing Gravity, no more Malka parties with you getting drunk and dancing like a lunatic in the middle of the dance floor while I sit in a corner and wish I were at home, no more lying sweaty in bed wishing we had a joint to smoke while ants climbed freely over our precious skin, no more making our way to murky Majnukatila to procure ourselves the aforementioned joint.

 I won't lie, I don't really miss all that too much. Actually, I don't miss all that at all.

What I do miss is lying in our room, the fan whirling slowly overhead, watching episode after episode of whatever television show we happened to be addicted to. What I do miss are breakfasts at the PG which we refused to skip, Aunty's beaming face, her stirring our coffee. What I do miss is running off to Khan Market in the middle of the afternoon (not the Metro, I definitely don't miss the Metro), to Chonas, or to My Bar, either by ourselves, or with friends, and drinking cool draughts of beer, chain smoking away to glory. I miss the buy-one-get-one-free cocktail offer, I miss the free drinks at Cafe Morrison and Turquoise Cottage, I miss borrowing your clothes every time I needed something nice to wear for, er, reasons known only to you. I miss lying in bed at night, with the lights off, waiting for sleep to come, and passing the time rolling around with laughter at our own nasty yet incredibly witty comments about people we know. I miss the two of us sitting around with green face packs on, I miss seeing your pregnant fantasies manifesting themselves in strange walks and pillows under shirts, I miss my free haircuts, I miss our complaining about the stupidity and futility of men, I miss the lives we'd plan for ourselves: they are not so vivid when I am alone. I miss those bloody pizzas, man, with the ham and the pineapple and the black olives. I miss smoking up with you, and I miss smoking up with you-and-the-others, and laughing at inappropriate things, I miss the nights where it would just be the two of us, forever alone, drinking port wine, and then passing out - plop, plop - not remembering what we'd been talking about the next day, when I woke up with a hangover, and you woke up without one. (I do not miss the hangovers.) I miss the auto rides to college, especially on winter mornings, when the air was sharp and cold and we were bundled up feeling hep in our blazers and (in your case) boots, the auto rides up the ridge, where the forest would stretch out to our right, a dazzling green tapestry, and the sky would look like a watercolour, and where, on a good day, we'd see a peacock. I miss going off on random holidays (well, alright, we did that twice - thrice if you count The Trip That Wasn't, but I know you will not) and being completely at peace, talking when needed, lazing when not needed. Being with you is like being by myself, except better.

When I first went to college, I told Nick I was worried about having a roommate because I was so used to privacy.I was terrified, I thought I'd hate it, I didn't know how I'd be able to handle having someone constantly by my side, there when I woke up, there throughout the day, there when I went to sleep. He didn't help matters, telling me that they were going to see every side of me, not just the one I showed to the world.

He was right, as it happens, but turns out that having someone constantly by my side wasn't a bad thing after all. It was what ultimately got me through those three years, it was the cause of nearly all  my laughter, and the comfort to all my woes, and now that the source of it all is in Delhi, and I am here, I miss it like hell, and am glad that, of all the idiotic things I did at college, taking you for granted was never one of them.


Mawii said...

Remember how you said that when you wrote a blog post for me it would make me cry? You were kind of right and I hate you a little for it. But love you so for everything else.

Anonymous said...

For an English Honours student - nay graduate - your spellings make me shudder...

In your post on Mawii:
1. 'hoards' should be 'hordes'
2. 'droughts' should be draughts'

In your post on your Mom:
1. 'see' should be 'sea'

There are more... :)

But, i must admit, they both made good reading...

trish. said...

Thank you, Father.

Anonymous said...


- Dad

Whippersnapper said...

I Love this. And it makes me miss you both like nobody's business.