By Kaustubh Srivastava
Podcast by Ms Anshika Nigam
They were a gang of 5 – Rohan, Ankur, Pulkit, Chirag and Kush. Rohan was the sloth – the slow one, always stuck to his couch and the play station games. Ankur was the cool dude, the all-time funny and savage in his replies. He was the go-to person if anyone needed to cook something exotic or find hacks about worldly problems. Pulkit had always been the stable kind, he was the big brother of the group. No decisions ever made by him yield a negative result. Chirag, on the other hand, was the politician figurine. You want to make plans- you go to him. By plans, I do not mean Goa plans; I am talking about those plans which, at any point of time, could put you in a lot of trouble. Kush being a people’s person was an equal mixture of all the good and the bad things –kindness, sensitivity, emotions, and compassion for others.
After spending 4 years together in that college, all five of them had become an inseparable part of each other’s Being. Be it taking up many trips together, or bunking classes, or even studying one night before the final exams, these five were hand in glove. College was in fact great, where these 5 had made their own personal heaven.
The final day of college eventually came. With all the five being placed with some firm, they had just few moments before biding adieu to each other. One fine evening , just before leaving the campus premises they decided to celebrate their friendship and farewell at their special place- Samarth. Samarth was the most amazing dhaba in Khopoli, a small town after Khandala. All their big celebrations – their placement party, celebration on Rohan finding his first and last girlfriend, their semester passing treats etc. were housed in Samarth- a place with whose vibe all were quite connected to. Anything special, Samarth was the place they would always go. So, that day being their last day in hostel, they were nostalgic that how 4 years had slipped away so quickly and none of them realized that college was finally over. They had given their last practical in the morning and in the evening, it was decided that before everyone leaves the very next morning for their respective hometowns, they should celebrate it at Samarth. Vehicles were arranged, food menu was decided, and in their best attire, the five of them left for Khopoli.
One last time for brewing the precious memories, for recollecting each and every bike ride through the hair-pin bends of Lonavala. Though all of them had no big plan about their lives, one thing they were all sure of was, to keep in touch forever; as their friendship had transcended into a beautiful soulful connection.
All the best chicken dishes were ordered – Chicken Hyderabadi, Chicken Roghan Josh, Chicken Tandoori, and Chirag’s favorite Chicken 65. As they saw the sun sleep into the horizon at dusk, the birds getting away to their nests after calling off for the day, they raised a toast to their bond- which was a reason for living each day to the fullest for the last 4 years. As the curtains of that chapter drew, with a new one to begin…in each heart these lines reverberated:
‘You tread up a mountain, with a hope that the ranges end and sun comes out from behind and shines in your eyes. You close your eyes for a second to adjust with the light and what comes ahead of you is a beautiful landscape filled with endless colors and vibes, which is what love is. That is what it feels like when we would be thinking of each other and the moments we have lived to the fullest here. And, when we meet next time, a few moments from now in the stage of life, the happiness each one of us will feel seeing each other and with the warmth of those tight hugs, would catch our breaths because we would be so overwhelmed to speak anything out of sheer joy. Perhaps, this is what special relationships are-which never fade’
The author is a cyber security engineer