Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Rest in peace, mon amie

It's been pouring incessantly. And with it the temperature dipping. Mornings I peep from under my cozy cover and see a dark overcast sky through the curtains and promptly sink back under the warm duvet. Next moment I am up groaning and rushing to let in my chirpy smiling maid.

We watch the rains together for some time till I get into the shower and she gets the kitchen going. All this while, the man sleeps with a silly smile at the corner of his mouth. Probably dreaming of partying in Ibiza. I usually let him be and rush to work.

I like the feeling when I am out on the road heading farther away from home and there's a howling storm chasing me. When umbrellas overturn and little unchaperoned children are almost flown away. I hold my bag closer and watch the world.

I love the rains. I love this city in the rains. It took me two years to feel like this again. Two years to be able to look at blurred sheets of rain and feel the warmth.

On a stormy night, two years ago, a pretty young girl jumped from her 5th floor bedroom window and fell in a heap of broken bones. Life still hovering.

It was a Thursday night. Pasta and baked potatoes night. Yes, every Thursday when the mother skipped her meals, she made the family their favourite dinner. And joined them for dessert later. This night was no different. The daughter got home from work picking up sweets on the way.

After dinner, mom settled down for the sitcoms, dad took the dog out for a walk and she got busy with phone calls.

It started raining hard and dad hurried back. In the dark, he noticed a girl lying and realised she had fallen and was badly hurt. He rushed over and took her in his arms shielding her head from the rains. The dog was barking wildly. A few people gathered and an ambulance appeared. They scooped up the mangled body, which was still breathing and zoomed off in the dark stormy night, sirens blaring. It all happened in less than 5 minutes.

Next day, while the mother cried in my arms screaming at me "why couldn't you save your best friend?" and neighbours and relatives looked accusingly at me, the father said he'll never forgive himself for not recognizing his own dying daughter when he held her in his arms before they took her away. But how could he? I shrieked at myself. It was dark and raining cats and dogs and he has poor eyesight. And how could he possibly think of his laughing daughter upstairs when he sees a woman's broken body lying? And she had changed her clothes too, for god's sake!

Anger seethed in me when I watched her grieving parents. How could she be so selfish? How could she do this? And for the rest of the year and the year after, the rains made me feel miserable. I couldn't even pass her house or her street without nausea taking over. When the sky turned grey, depression took over me as I smelt death everywhere.

This year, it's different. Maybe the change in residence helped. Maybe other changes helped. But I am back to enjoying the beauty of this lovely weather. I am ready with my scrabble board and calorific food and all set to cheat the hubby in a fair and square game. Ready to grab the first and last hot pakora off the plate. I am truly happy as I welcome friends with steaming mugs of coffee and spicy rolls as we settle down to watching movies at home.

And at last, I have dug out pictures of my friend and laughed at the memories. The parties we went to, when she wouldn't eat the whole day so that her tummy sinks into her sexy dress in the evening. She wailed when I laughed at her. At last, I have accepted that my friend must have had a reason. I wish she confided in me. I don't know if I could have helped. It shouldn't matter any more. But I am praying she is at peace. Because I finally am.


Blogger shub said...

glad you've finally found your peace. You had to, someday.

3:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

*a big hug*. am glad that u found that peace!


3:29 PM  
Blogger Rat said...

That was very moving.Thanks for sharing it with us. take care:)

5:46 PM  
Blogger Mukta said...

Am really sorry for your loss. Glad you are at peace though....and it is the most difficult thing to accept - that the person you've lost must have had a reason to die.

6:06 PM  
Blogger Prerona said...

I love the monsoons too. The really heavy, thick sheets ... the kinds that make you feel like they'll blot away everyother feeling and u'll forget anything, everything

11:16 PM  
Blogger Kafka on the Shore said...

What if? is such a hard question to let go off. I'm glad that you have and that you miss your friend. She would have wanted you to be happy. Have you by any chance read "Norwegian Wood" by Murakami?

6:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

a tight tight Hug for you Anumita. i know what you mean by smelling death everywhere. i don't think i am over 'her' yet though. angry that she left her daughter still so young. angry cos she did not meet S. angry for so many things. but most of all for not giving me time to talk to her a little more.



9:45 AM  
Blogger Akruti said...

We always stop at the question "If only...
But it is not in our hands,it will happen if it has to.Hugs to u,and glad to know that u found ur peace.god bless:)

11:32 AM  
Blogger Rabin said...

Very moving post

11:44 AM  
Blogger Miss Sea said...


11:54 AM  
Anonymous Kahini said...

Glad you've come to terms with it, babe. Glad you like the monsoon again.

12:11 PM  
Blogger anumita said...

shub: I have. Thank you.

bips: Thanks for the hug. :)

rat: Glad you didn't feel otherwise.

mukta: You are right. A person I knew so well and talked to about everything. And then you wonder what was the one reason you didn't know of...

ricer: yes, has a kind of cathartic feeling.

kafka: Welcome. Maybe you are right. But it wasn't easy to be happy in the beginning. But time is healing. No I haven't read it.

Parna: I know. Now I realise why they say, "leave nothing for tomorrow, for nobody has seen it." It helps when we learn to accept, I guess.

akruti: I know. But it's a feeling you deal with for some time. And when we let go, we find our peace.

r, tipsy: Thank you.

kahini: I have. You cannot not appreciate this gorgeous weather for long. :)

6:08 PM  
Blogger boabhan sith said...

Wow, I'm glad you're able to come to terms. Those kind of things can steal life times away from people who never learn to come to terms with them. I'm sorry for your loss and hope that you'll always be able to remember the happier things about her.

Thanks for stopping by my blog.
I'll add a link to ya.

11:10 PM  
Blogger thoughts said...

well enjoy the rain.. it never ceases to bring bk memories - happy and sad :)

3:49 AM  
Blogger Kafka on the Shore said...

norwegian wood is a great read, if a bit depressing. and i like the way you write. i'll be back. :)

8:34 AM  
Blogger Gangadhar said...

Well..I wish the rains,now will make all the sorrows washed out...Enjoy the rains,Anumita!!

10:24 AM  
Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

Sad but after a lot of experience losing people I knew... I have come to realise that everyone goes. Everyybody knows this at cognition, but subconciously we dont prepare ourselves.

I love mumbai because, it just doesent care for anyone. The show goes on... :)

I thorroughly understood what you wrote...



11:38 AM  
Anonymous Subs said...

(((((((((())))))) How have you been?

12:27 PM  
Blogger Chakra Sampath said...

Very touching post... am glad that u r in peace now.. Enjoy your time!

2:24 PM  
Blogger nin said...

very touching post..nice...and glad that finally u found your peace.

4:08 PM  
Blogger anumita said...

boabhan: Thank you. You are right, sometimes all these thoughts can really eat away at the mind. But I am out of it.

thoughts: Yes, I will. Thanks.

kafka: Thank you. I will try to get hold of it.

gangadhar: It's indeed washing and life is looking fresh and new again.

vasu: Bombay on the outside doesn't care, but we still feel the pain. We cry in our hearts and go on, with a brave face, taking care at times not to let the mask slip.

chakra: It feels better writing about it.

subs: Am good. How you?

avik: Welcome. :)

4:37 PM  
Blogger nin said...

Thanks anumita for stopping by my site and thanks again for your comments. see you .bye..

6:59 PM  
Blogger transience said...

aawww, sweetie. so sorry for your loss. but you do deserve your peace. *hugs*

6:34 AM  
Blogger Khushee said...

Happy that you can enjoy the rains again. It must have been difficult.

9:24 AM  
Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

I think that quality of mumbai is a good one. I think that is what nature and life is about. you live yours, and others live theirs. Its a misnotion for us to believe we influence each other's lives. Each one onto himself.

We are taught to care, love and cry and feel joy and therefore we see pain too...

All of this is unreal..

I am not cynical about the world and neither do I intend to hurt your feelings. Just think in a cool and relaxed manner you will understand that the whole drama of life and love as we see it is nothing but that. A drama. It has to down shutters some day isnt it ?


6:38 PM  
Blogger M said...

Very moving....

I lived the emotions you went through with your words...

May your friend rest in peace....

7:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its really hard to accept things like that n move on in a normal manner...im not good at it..but will try hard coz its another lesson from life.


10:26 AM  
Blogger anumita said...

transience: Thanks :)

khushee: It was. But things are good now.

vasu: I would hate myself for living half my life in Bombay if it takes my feelings away and makes me mechanical, only wanting to get every day done with.
Or maybe, that's the state of Nirvana. Life doesn't seem very appealing if we keep thinking of downing shutters.
I like to go through it all. Drama included. Feel it all. Wherever I am. I like to think I make a differece in others' lives as they do in mine. I also like the idea of paying it forward. That kind of makes life complete.

M: I pray she does.

jo: It IS tough. First you find it unreal, you want to escape from it all... but you finally have to.

12:37 PM  
Blogger nin said...

Anumita...post regularly....
otherwise i become impatient..
take care.

7:05 PM  
Blogger Vasu the terrible said...

I know, Its damm difficult to pull away from the roller coaster ride of ecstatic excitement and miserable dispair.

Its the way one choses to live. As again each one for oneself and the law of nature doesent wait or care for one man...

everything will pass...


10:22 PM  
Anonymous Ash said...

Anumita, I hope that writing this post was a comfort for you. Im glad you shared your feelings with us. Take care *hug*

8:39 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

Someone told me once that suicide hurts us (friends and families of the deceased) because we must come to the realization that our love for that person just wasn't enough somehow. They take their mystery with them and we are left feeling helpless in sorting it out within ourselves.
Releasing that demon of doubt and guilt is the best way to honor the person who couldn't carry on anymore.
You write beautifully and I'm so happy for you that you can step beyond this horrific event to grow in your own life.
Hugs to you, my friend.

4:37 PM  
Blogger gulnaz said...

i don't know what to say and its tough writing through tears.

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