apologies for not having written in days. but i've been really happy and busy.
and that just proves my pet theory that if you are unhappy you have lots to write about.
and that brings me to my next best pet theory. there are two types of unhappiness. one is delicious - because you know it's shortlived, or because you know that it's not really such a big deal. like for instance a trivial fight, a break up with someone you would anyway have broken up with. it's emotional cleansing. you can cry, have an outburst, gather all your friends, grab lots of sympathy, shop a lot, and wake up smiling two days later. these unhappy moments are meant to be juiced.
the second unhappiness is the serious kind. your spouse/lover/friend leaves you. someone you love dies. that kind of thing. you get the drift right? the kind that leaves you feeling someone just wrenched your gut out, and you takes days, and weeks, and months and sometimes years to get over it.
anyway, my first brush with unhappiness was when i was in school. i liked this guy. ya, right ... what else could cause unhappiness when you are 15. his name was AZ. sorry about the initials, fat chance that he's reading my blog but anyway....
point is AZ was tall, handsome, soft spoken. had lovely brown eyes. a super sexy accent ( his folks had just moved back from Botswana). and he was two years senior to me.
so in class eight, i spend all my time drawing his name all over my school books. i craned my neck during assembly every morning just so i could see him. i decided the water cooler that was closest to his class had the coldest water. i sat in the scorching summer sun, watching the school cricket team in action. sometimes, i was the sole spectator.
and i thought no one knew.
then in class nine i realised everyone knew. my whole class used to try and push me on to him, when we passed his class in assembly. everytime he walked past my class, there would be wild cheering and hooting. and to my utter mortification we landed up being in the same damn Ashoka house. By now, not just my class, even his class knew. My famous crush has gone around the school.
End of class nine. last day of school. Everyone is delirious. saying bye. eating golas. Throwing ink on each other. There's chaos outside the school. Buses are honking. Those of us on cycles are waiting for friends. That one day, no one is in any hurry to leave.
Suddenly, in slow motion, I look up from my cycle, to see AZ walking towards me. My first reaction is to flee. Just jump on my cycle and get the hell out of there. But I'm frozen, rooted to the spot. He stops right in front of me. Looks down at me, and smiles. My heart stops beating. Then kickstarts with a loud noise that should make everyone around me jump.
I can hear giggling from behind me. No one says anything. Finally he says, " Hi...I'm A. " As if I didn't know. I know his name, his surname, his favourite colour, his pet's name, his house address, his two sisters, his favourite sport. But just then, my ears are ringing, my face is a horrible mottled red, my fringe is poking into my eyes...and nothing is coming out of my mouth. So I continue to grin.
He says, " I thought we could be friends." I can feel someone poking me in the ribs. It's my best friend, S, who's in class eleven. She pokes me again. I know I have to say something now...anything....
" Hi, I'm S. And I'm really late. So I'll see you later."
And I turn my cycle and ride off as fast as I can. My friends catch up with me five minutes later and they are shaking with laughter. They pull me off my cycle and we roll around by the side of the road. Them clutching their stomachs, me my head. I can't believe I could have been such an ass.
So it goes on.
Class tenth. He comes to see me in my class. I jump out of the window. My class is on the first floor, I break my hand.
I'm running down the stairs. Suddenly I see him and his friends at the bottom. I miss two steps, and twist my ankle.
Finally he calls me and my best friend S to his birthday party. I don't go. Not just because I'm shy, but because my mom would grill me, and my face would be a dead give away.
But S goes. And things are never the same again. Because a week later she tells me that she went to his party, because she is in love with him. And she told him that, and now.... here's where the unhappiness bit comes in .... they are going around. boyfriend girlfriend. in love. together. a & S. he tall, she tall. me on my cycle.
I come home. and sit on the dining table, and eat my lunch, and open my books and study. And then when it's really hot and the even the fans can't muster up the enthusiasm to keep going, my parents go to sleep. and i lock myself in the bathroom. and i cry and i cry.
and that summer day, i have my first brush with unhappiness.