I told him that I am going that way to collect some books. I could easily drop him at the airport. No, No, its no trouble for me. Because I am going that way.
May be he guessed that I am lying. But he didn’t say anything. Yeah, I act funny some times. What is my problem in telling my friend that I will come with you to the airport so that I can still talk to you for another fifteen minutes?
He is anxious, I noted while driving. What is there to worry? Just hang on like a leech. Be the rock on which your adversity will smash on and disintegrate. What?…Okay, but so what? Even if you give up and come back, it doesn’t matter. Why we all do this that we do? Only because of peer pressure. To float our professional egos. But death makes everything inconsequential. Death is a great leveller. The fact that everything will end, regardless of what you do, what you become- it gives you immense freedom to live this moment the way you want.
Do this bit. Come back. Then start your real game.
I thought, everything appeared like a thousand years ago. Were we the rebels that we thought we were? The knights of free thought, creativity, freedom from peer pressure, and what not. Or were we just idiots who were in denial? Trying to forget the fact that in the end, majority is safety? Ignoring the fact that you can pass through certain doors only if you bow?
There is no right or wrong. It is not that your decisions are inherently right or wrong. It is the actions that follow your decisions that will ultimately prove whether your decision was right or wrong.
What? No, my bookshop is round the corner. Fine. Are you sure? Because I have time to spare any way. Okay. Well, I don’t know what to say. When will we see again? After 5 years? No?…Don’t make jokes like that. Of course you are going to finish this.
We shook our hands. Clumsy. Well, we were friends for more than 12 years. But it was the first time we were shaking hands. We both were embarrassed.
As I drove back, I thought, I should have told him that line about death being a great leveller and we being free because of that. No that he has not heard it from me before…
Photo by Sean Hawley