With certain people something just clicks from the moment we meet & one actually wonders did we know each other before. It’s, as if we’ve known each other from childhood etc. Actually with Ananth i’ve only spend about 2-3 years together in our early 20’s. Once a week i had to go to Bombay for some work or other, some lawyer’s office, some dates in the High Court, some printing work, it was also pre-internet age, one of my collegues used to travel a lot on work & he always used to request me to book his train tickets while i had to go to Bombay. Which meant standing in ques for long hours in VT station to book train tickets. It was all really boring stuff. The highlight of these trips to Bombay was that i knew i will be meeting Ananth & Kartik sometime in the evening in a desi adda near Grant road station.
Ananth went off to Flint, Kartik in the meantime became a full timer in CPDR & i was his understudy & chipped in whatever way i could untill he went on that fateful trip to Delhi where he was mowed down by a DTC bus in Lodi road. After that i withdrew myself for many years…. probably about 18 years.
It was about 5 years back i found Ananth again. The amazing thing was: those 18 years which we were not in touch seems to hardly matter & suddenly here we were chatting with each other almost everyday. Around 6pm i knew i would find him on google chat, around 9pm i knew i would find him on FB. We had so much to talk to each other about plants & birds in his front & back yards, about our dogs Magic, Mia & Midori, about cooking, recipes were exchanged, sports, gunners & catalans, music, Eduardo Galeano, about this, that & the other.
Sometime back he lost his dad & around the same time my dad was also unwell & i used to be with him in the eerie surroundings of various hospitals. Talking with Ananth during those days actually used to make me feel better & I could nurse my dad with renewed vigour. Eventually in last November when my dad passed away i used to feel Ananth is besides me because he was constantly messaging me from across the globe & kept me going.
Whenever he was coming to India we had planned & plotted to meet up. However due to farm work & our dogs i am not very mobile to go anywhere. Once it was decided that he, Jennifer (his wife) & his sister’s family will be driving will be driving down to our farm. Again somehow due to lack of time during his short visits it never materialised. He called me to say….. next time da, pucca.
And now there is no next time.
I am yet to meet someone with the sense of humour like Ananth & in these days of Nazi regime in this country he would’ve cojured jokes out of nowhere during tamasha’s like the so called “World Yoga day”, “Selfie with daugter” etc he is sorely missed for his ultimate knack of seeing the funny side of things.
peace, love, adios & see you on the other side