Life was complex earlier – understanding the concepts of integration, differentiation and atomic tables but it is much simpler now – one has to know only oneself. But, it’s strange as there was a sense of satisfaction even in those complexities unlike a feeling of restlessness in this simplicity. Somehow, I have managed or will get accustomed to enjoy this simplicity as well. Now coming back to ‘friends’, in my school days I used to hang out with some weird bunch of people namely Ankita Thaker , Binal Pandit and Pooja Jethwani who knew a little more about me (Heta Vyas) than my role number. Out of the three, Pooja was somewhat close to me. I was indifferent to Binal and used to hate Ankita; or even more than hate.After my plus two in the year of 2003, I and Ankita got admission in an Architecture college at Rajkot and Vidyanagar respectively; Binal went to an Engineering college at Ahmedabad, and Pooja made through a dental college at Jaipur. I was too excited of my new world of unknown people, lots of friends and interesting boys! I was sure of not ‘missing’ them.
I was enjoying everything to the core – my new city, my college, my hostel. In the midst of all this, I realized that the frequency of my remembering that weird bunch also increased day after day. I just smiled when their faces crossed my mind. Free messages scheme accelerated the process of sharing between me and Binu. (That’s the nickname of Binal).Anki a.k.a Ankita also managed to remain in touch; I still hated her but could not ignore her. Days went by and the sharing between me and Binu increased, the gossips with Pooja varied and the fights of ‘You don’t understand’ between me and Anki got transformed into discussions of ‘I understand’. Things went pretty well for all of us; sharing each others pain and gain making a huge roller coaster ride whenever we met. In 2007, all four of us somehow managed to spent time with each other at Binu’s place, making my first unofficial visit to Ahmedabad during my final submissions. It was definitely worth it! Yes, I missed them on my way to Rajkot.
But in the month of September in the same year, things din’t seem well for Binu. She experienced some kind of frequent joint pain but just could not figure out it’s actual reason. She was quite OK in spite of her aching body and her pale face which said a different story altogether. This story took a different turn on May 27, 2010, at arnd 11 am when one of my classmate Prachi Oza called me from Pune. I had my final exam but somehow managed to pick up her call. ‘Did u get the news?’, she asked. ‘What news’ was my reaction.‘Binal passed away yesterday ‘was her reply. Did I mention it was Ankita’s birthday?
After two and a half years, when is it alone I ask myself has anything changed between ‘us’. Yes, there is a change. The way I feel for my friends. I mentioned earlier I never had friends; I had guides – the best of guides whom I also loved.It’s true that never was I loved by them because I was always valued by them - the most ; love just fell into place. I never had to make any efforts because they always understood my needs and worries and they still understand. And that’s why I really don’t know what ‘missing’ is all about because they are always there… guiding me, loving me and supporting me.
I m lost in the thoughts.. I am about to cry when I am interrupted by a blink of light ‘Meeting at 7, Binu’s place ‘, text from Anki … Binu’s place is the leading chain of restaurants of India ; probably a return gift for our guiding angel!