Me And My Friend

“There is so much beauty in the world, that sometimes I feel I cannot take it”.

It’s not often that I get to see the sun set, all the stars in the sky and a beautiful sunrise all within 12 hours. It’s not often that I travel form Delhi to Bangalore by train.

It wasn’t my idea, to study in a collage in Bangalore. My father wanted me to do it. It was his idea of getting me to know the ‘outside world’.

I made a mistake by traveling alone. I never had an idea how boring traveling alone was.

That was when I met him. He was almost my age. He was staying in the adjacent boogie. Surprisingly, he just lived in the next road to my house all his life. I had never seen him before. Our houses were placed centrally in a busy area. I presume that was the reason we never met.

To add to my wonder, he was going to study in the same collage and the same class. We just hit it off. He was like a brother I never had. And in what seemed like moments we arrived at our destination.

There is very little I remember after that. All I remember is the auto and the bus. It’s hard to point out whose mistake it was but it happened. I woke up in the hospital a next day. My body hurt and I smelt like garbage.

I only took a couple of hours for me to get on my feet. The accident had given me few scratches and had knocked the wind out of me. The first thing that came to mind was my parents. I had just called after arriving and had promised to call every day.

It was engaged. That’s when I saw the news paper. ‘HEAVY FLOOD IN NORTHERN KARNATAKA’. The article said that the flood had washed out most of the railway lines and telephone lines. I couldn’t contact my parents. It seemed so right. If I had informed them my mother would have called me back home.

I then tried to find my friend. I saw the auto driver but not my friend. I spoke to the doctor. He said that there were only 3 people admitted to the hospital from the accident. The auto driver, the bus driver and me. I presumed he must be in the hostel.

Everywhere on my way to the hostel I saw dejected people, the tragedy of the flood had gotten to them. At the hostel after enquiring with the staff I knew he had not checked in.

I checked in and my new roommate was heard my story and promised to help me. We searched everywhere we thought he could be and returned empty handed. He then proposed that probably my friend was so shaken that he went back home. That was the best possibility and we accepted it.

It was two days later when it happened. I saw him walking around the room when I woke up. He looked surprised to see me. Then a few seconds later he just disappeared. I forgot the incident thinking it was a dream. Then like an ironic joke I saw him in my dream and spoke to him. The conversation was not clear and
he mentioned me leaving his side. My roommate was horrified hearing this. He then suggested slowly but calmly that may be he was on the other side. The thought triggered my memory and I remember seeing an iron rod going through his chest before blacking out at the accident. We had never looked in the morgue!

We decided to go there the next day. We could not sleep that night. My roommate was more spiritual than I thought. He explained me how the land of the living and the dead sometimes mixed and the outcome was unpredictable. Before I knew I was asleep. I saw him again this time he was at a cemetery and was standing in front of a tombstone.

I woke up my friend and I forced him to accompany me to the cemetery. The trip to the cemetery was coinciding with day break. I could see the sunrise and I thought “There is so much beauty in the world”. Just the thought held my breadth. At the gate my roommate said that he was not coming inside. I ran in through the path to the place where I saw my friend in my dream.

I read the tombstone. I felt a tear trickle down my cheek and moist soil on my knees. My head was suddenly heavy and I could not believe my eyes. I read it again. Every alphabet spelled correctly, even the date of birth.

It was my name!

“I have not thought about it before and you may have
not. But heaven and hell might be right here”