That Christmas. And this.

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I met you yesterday. After an entire light year. You still smile your glittery sunshine half-smiles, and strangely, I still peep at you through the velvety curtains of faked bitterness and pique. I still stand on my toes to reach out for your curls and ruffle them. Run my fingers through them to smoothen it. You still pull my hand tightly and make me walk on the ‘right side of the road’. We still can’t hate each other. We giggle and then we cry, and then we hug like we have never hugged before. It’s like a vicious cycle. I was there by the sea side yesterday. You were there too. So was the Santa cap. And the tears. And the laughter. And Christmas. Love fools that we are. And shall always remain so. One year has passed by since last Christmas. Feels like eternity.

You still laugh at our endless, mindless chatter about random, pointless things that makes the world go round. Makes my world go round. In endless little circles, in thoughtless chatter about you to my friends. The silent tears under the darkdark sky, making circle-ish patterns on moist window panes. I think about you and draw smiley faces inside those circles. The silly little questions about our existence in each other’s lives. Even though we know all the answers, we still ask it to ‘reaffirm’ our place. The world will never understand this. Or us, for that matter. But that is okay. We can live with that. Surely, there are certain things that never change. Never will.

But I met you yesterday. Walking towards each other from far away while talking on the phone, just like they show it in the movies. ‘Filmy drama’ can never seize to happen. The world stood still. The chatter, the vendors, the people – it all stopped for a while. I could only hear the crashing of the waves beside us. I was ‘comfortably numb’ till you rushed towards me and held me in the tightest hug. The warm cocoon, the familiar smell of your shirt, the touch that is oh-so-known. I have never felt like this before. And your presence left a tingling feeling inside me. Like a deep, unhealed scar that bleeds again after a careless tease. I played with my scar. Your nonchalant half-smile and your deep voice reminded me of all the times I’ve gambled around with life. With glasses of vodka, Goldflakes dangling in my lips and tears over all those endless pictures. Should I have just turned around and left? Hide till you never find me back again? Your touch sent down shivers, and puddles of nostalgia appeared. They reminded me of the dark night, that beach far away from the madding crowd, the DSLR and the mingling of our souls that weaved a thousand colourful dreams in the black-and-white canvas of our lives. We run away from each other, then come back. The world around us change, the people change. We have changed too. But still, some things never change. Never will.

I was lost in my reverie after you left. I don’t know if that was the last goodbye. ‘Last goodbyes’ have been tried and tested, and sadly (or otherwise) it has never worked with us. The kiss and the unfinished embrace still wait feverishly for completion. Guess they are never meant to be. But we’ll meet again. And again have sev puri till I stain my tee-shirt. Look into each others eyes and then quickly look away outside the auto, and pretend nothing happened. Next time I won’t wear my lenses. Nor my kajal. I can’t pretend in front of you, right? Until then, we shall remain a beautiful memory in the folds of nostalgia, a star stapled in our very own foamy, ebony sky; a piece of rusted remembrance dipped in rainbow colours. Yes, we’ll meet again. Someday maybe. On the other side of this world. In the form of melted tears and loud giggles. In some Marathi poem. In that cramped up IC Colony apartment. In the shadows that form on the walls.

On hazy monsoon afternoons when Bombay loses itself to the customary hustle-bustle. In Marine Drive. Under that flimsy old umbrella. Inside a fast local train speeding away to a destination unknown to both. Yet another unfinished kiss maybe, another warm but awkward hug. Yes, we’ll meet again. In the broken Marathi conversations. In old sms-es. In those late night phone conversations that were meant to mean nothing at all. Yes, we will meet. Till then, I’ll let my little rainbow thoughts swallow you into my neverland of nothingness. And there you shall remain. Forever. ‘Cuz as you always say baby, some things never change. Never will.

“We are two lost souls swimming in a fish bowl, year after year..”

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