As days go by, I find myself better understanding the paradox of my life. 5 years ago, by this time we had completed a lot of things. I think you were into vmware. Preetu, you and Pavan got into Cognizant. I was selected in Wipro. I think you and veda had just started. I think this was the start of the 8th semester where you were interning with Cisco, Preetu was interning with IBM, me n Pavan were at home doing 8th sem project (respectively :) I think this was one of the semesters where we had maximum walk the talks. I think all of them around RR Nagar area. This was also the semester of realisations. You realised how much you are not suitable for a development job ... how many nights you spent learning up python for a scripting tool you wrote in Cisco! Preeth realised how much he hates IBM AIX. Also, he seemed to realise that Vidya's the one for him and soon change minds and say its over!
Those walks is what I love the most. Although we wouldn't actually walk and talk ... those sessions somehow got the name walk the talk. Probably because we kept walking from one chat place to another :P Till now I didn't understand what was the trigger behind the talks, but somehow after having cutlet chat, and a burger we were in some philosophical topic or another. As usual, I used to be the wonderful listener ... pretending to be passive but inside want to listen to every word that's spoken. Somehow I had it etched in my mind that - i make a moo point. Even though I pretended that I had enough of the talk ... and looked at the world around (aka. bird watching) I secretely enjoyed it. I relived everymoment of the conversation soon after we left for our respective houses and smiled. Those conversations always gave me company. Hence I never felt alone. At a point in time, I kinda felt I had enough of these looong talks. Coz I felt most of the time they didn't lead anywhere. Its like you talk and talk until one of us feels the need to go home. I was so ignorant of the fact that those times and moments were spent with 3 of the most favorite people of my life. I was so naive that I couldn't even recognise the amount of feel good factor that came when we talked. Just being a passive listener to most of the looong life changing talks that we had, I had so much feel good about myself and my life. I can only imagine how good I would have felt and how much I would have changed had I actively participated in the discussions.
5 years hence, I sit at a library at one of the universities I never even remotely thought I would end up in, in a country I thought I'd never be able to visit - Paradox number 1. My house is a good 20 minutes walk from the library (or the classrooms). Each day I walk home even though there is a good bus service. I walk home because, the path home is nice. It gives me time to think. It gives me time with myself. I walk home because, that's when I retrospect. I walk home because, that's when I feel I want to talk to you the most. I want to talk about a lot of things that have changed and how I have changed. I want to talk about how situations present themselves to me and how I dealt with them (or blissfully ignored them). I want to talk about this new thing I found out about. I want to talk about that new dish I cooked and would love for you to taste it. I want to generally talk trash for a long time and feel good at the end of it. I walk home trying to do all these. I walk alone - Paradox number 2. I thought I was kidding when I told you guys: "stuff happens very late with me. I realise or understand or come up with some improved version after a definite time lag. That lag is greater than each of you." Little did I know that this is how I work! I realise a lot of things about us and our past and how I could have done something and didn't. I immediately pick up my phone and dial your number. You can't pick my calls now. Paradox number 3. All my life I've been in the company of some amazing people. Until engineering I had my sister and mother as good friends. Engineering onwards, you came along. Amidst all of you, I thought it'll be cool to say that I like being alone! I went to trips alone. I went to bike rides alone (of course, those are apart from what we went to), I went to movies alone. Little did I realise that isolating oneself temporarily is not called being alone. And now that I have come to understand what being alone means, I don't want to be alone. Just the feeling of lonliness gives me a chill. All I can do about it is to stomach it.
"Solitude is the company of a virtuous few." I kinda liked this as a punchline. Now that I know what Solitude truly means, I don't want to be one of the virtuous few. I want to be the normal un-virtuous fellow who claims to be alone but can't. Paradox number 4. I wish I didn't have to learn this way. I wish I realised the value of what I had with me back in 2008. I wish I had done well in that EMC interview I was called for on July 09th 2006. I wish I had come along with you on July 23rd 2008. I wish I was your room-mate in the US. I wish I was with you. Enough wishing .... I just want you.