One of the greatest wonders of life, according to me, is the ability to communicate with a wide set of people, identify a select few with whom you think will share an unknown closeness, back your instincts and give it all you can to be in touch with them. Many a time, I have pondered how much a new face means to us after some point of time.
How many of us really keep in touch with our old friends? All of us have met so many people since childhood that the number keeps increasing by the day. We lose track of some of them just due to the sheer number of new faces that we meet everyday. Obviously, you give it your best shot to stay in touch with all, but the inevitable slowly seeps in. The good old days of yesteryears is slowly forgotten. The hourly phone calls are replaced by daily phone calls, which soon turns weekly and before your realize, it has already become bi-monthly, until one fine day it dawns on you that you haven't spoken to your friend in a year. You think, by then, it is too late, and the shameless guilt in you prevents you from reaching out to him then on. It's quite a sad story, really! But, why is it really difficult to stay in touch with everyone? Let us consider the statistics. I had about 100 people in school, 150 people in Pre-University college, about a 200 during my Engineering, another 200 during my Masters, and top it off with another 300 away from the academic circle (jobs, neighborhood and common friends). The accumulation process takes the count to close to a thousand people in the last few years, and the addition has just not stopped. Obviously, it goes without saying that I am not close to everyone in the group. It has always been a handful at every stage, where you get to know a few of them really well, and the rest just make up the numbers. Considering that I was close to at least twenty people on an average (the number is really high during Masters and abysmally low when it comes to high school) at every stage, that brings down the figure to about hundred people. Keeping in touch with hundred people too can be a daunting task. That's when the importance of emails and social networking sites are realized. Just to keep in touch, Orkut is phenomenal, but for all other purpose, it is nothing but an absolute time consuming exercise leading nowhere.
Imagine the prospect of meeting all these people sometime in the future. That would be phenomenal, but will I really have the chance to meet them is the big question. It is a scary prospect to realize that I will never meet some of them again in my life. There are many with whom I have spent all my time talking loads and loads on issues that mean nothing to others, waging little wars that have no economic impact, trying to gain an upper hand in trivialities, boasting about nothing, when finally you realize that whatever is happening is so momentary and on-the-spot. The sad part is, you have no idea how all those wonderful moments translate to nothing but memories for the future. I am sure I have used this quote many a time in my blog, but some sentences can be repeated time and again. Your guess is as good as mine; the quote is from R K Narayan, who in Bachelor of Arts says, People pretended that they were friends, but the fact is they are brought together by forces of circumstances. How much more can a sentence be plain and hard hitting!
Everybody is on the run, all of us wanting to be something in life. So, on the way, you meet some and bid goodbye to some, and in the process, you realize that you might never be meeting the person whom you bid farewell. In plain words, the farewell is as good for life. I know I have to stay in touch with many, but in the quagmire of daily chores, I am sometimes lost in the absurdity of life where short term relief masks everlasting happiness, giving me a chance to reflect on these uncertainties, bringing me to reality with a question that pounds my mind often Why?