random-relative: So, did you make friends in NY?
me: Err, yes. I did.
What a silly question this is. Ofcourse I made friends in NY, I lived there for two years for God's sake. What did you expect me to do? Live like a hermit next to Columbia emerging only for classes returning home to my solitary hole to cook my lonesome meal and go to bed dreaming of Karachi? What I would like to know is, 'Why', even in the interests of furthering the randomness of this conversation would you ask such an utterly inane question and waste both our time with the obvious monosyllabic reply?
If you really want to know: I didn't just make friends in NY. I made family in NY. And, for the record, I think you are an idiot.
random-relative: So, do you miss them? Which one of your friends do you miss the most?
me: Err, all of them I suppose?
Idiocy compounded. *surprise*
But in the interests of furthering this conversation - however merit-less it may be - how do you decide which one of your friends you miss the most? Or am I just not quite normal? (Note: Deepak don't answer that at all. Everyone else, be gentle! :P)
Digression aside, there are times when I don't miss any of them. And then there are times when I miss one of them so much I wish I could - somehow - let them know how much they're missed. Early in the mornings, when I wake up, I miss Jenny. Rather I miss J calling. I miss knowing that almost everyday unless she's holed up like a mole in front of her laptop working on the next miserable deadline she will call me and whine. Yes, believe-it-or-not, I miss her whining. I miss knowing what the next tragedy to befall her will be. And I miss making fun of her about it. Because what's a little caustic humor and belittling of life's woes between friends?! :P I miss having the one friend who will - because she cannot help it - be there for me whenever I need her. Who will be possessive about me. Who will resent it when I make 'other friends' until she gets to know them and assumes their friendship for 'both of us'. I miss knowing that no matter what happens, I can call up this one person and be assured of getting advice (sometimes welcome, sometimes not-so-welcome), sympathy (only if and when needed) and always a reason to laugh. Then as the day goes by I miss Shubs. I miss her knocking on my door for random little things. I miss being able to walk out of my room and walk into hers to show her what I'm wearing. Every-single-day. To show off the clothes I've bought. To tell her every little stupid thing that happens because she'd generally be interested in the stupidity. And to listen to what happened during her day. Because the truth is, if there's anyone I actually 'lived' with this year, it was her. And as an extension of that I miss Bharat. I miss having someone who can walk into my room, turn it upside down and not be scared of my reaction. I miss having someone around who is just-a-little-bit more spoiled than I am. Who expects royal treatment, even from me, and graciously accepts it like its his due. Because maybe it is. And I miss both of them the way people miss nosy neighbors with the kind of exasperated-love-hate combination that makes you grateful for them even as you wonder how they manage to walk out of their door on the most unfortunate occasions. And both of them know EXACTLY what I'm referring to! :P I miss Saurabh most when I make tea. Because he was the only one who ever showed up expecting chai. But I talk to him nearly everyday, and even though gtalk is not face-to-face, talking is what we always did best. He 'gets' me in a way that only other people as potentially fucked-in-the-head can. And we share the dark, morbid, almost macabre sense of humor that very few of us appreciate. I miss Nakul most when I think about dancing. And I really, really miss dancing. A lot. But playing poker with him every night helps. Except he can't make me tea, or bring me food, when he's so far away. I miss Kaash when there's too much food, when I'm rolling up my brothers cuffs and telling him not to wear his shades on his head, or commit some other fashion faux pax. I miss Madhav whenever I hear music. I miss Eva's energy - anybody who knows her knows what I'm talking about. And I miss both of them when I want to go out and do something new, something different, something random. I miss Sonali when I want some girl-time and someone to go have ice-cream with. And sit and talk to about everything. I miss Kashif and Vineet in the middle of the night. I miss that special Philadelphia coffee and long, intense conversations about anything and everything - punctuated by moments of extremely trivial, extremely idle gossip. I miss looking out of his window and being jealous of river-view. I miss taking advantage of him everytime I needed a buddy to walk about town with. I miss her when I think about late-night maggi-noodle rendezvous, and girly excursions on town to buy make-up. I miss Rohit because he's not here. Which makes my world all topsy-turvy somehow. I miss Maheshwari when I want to dance. Really dance, not play around on the floor. He's the only person I know I could dance all night with without getting bored. Because he's just that good. And I miss Mitch. Because, I miss mitch. I miss 'Australian' music, which I still haven't managed to get hold of. I miss knowing I'll have somewhere to go when I'm lonely. I miss bugging the white man, about the white man's burden. And I miss randomly walking around the city in the night. I miss Saman (even though she's right here) when I want a shoulder. She's possibly, one of the only women I know who I can lean on. And I appreciate that more than she will ever know. I miss Banyo. So much. I have never known anyone so lovable and annoying simultaneously. Australia is lucky to have her. So is her husband. And Maile, how can a tribute to the last year in NY be complete without her? She is perhaps the only person I know who I can talk to - for hours - about everything trivially-profound. Were she not too busy making holes in her body somewhere in China, I'm assuming we would be furthering our grand plan to entertain the world. As it is, I miss talking to her. Muchly. I miss Angela. Because who else is going to entertain me with their lovable neurosis? But who else is going to always be there for me when I need her, whether it's because I'm sick and I need food, or because I'm packing and I need help, or just because I need company.
I miss all of them. One-by-one mostly, sometimes all together. And I could get lost in nostalgia for hours if I'd let myself. But I don't. Until someone asks me a thoroughly asinine series of questions. I honestly wish random-relatives wouldn't try to make conversation on days when they leave their brains behind for dry-cleaning!