Sunday, February 14, 2010

The friends I have been with

One type of people we treasure the most are our friends. Atleast for me, my friends have always been special for me. So I thought to take a moment's time from my life and cherish the memories of some of the fascinating people I have crossed roads with.

When I was in school, apart from some of the hot chick's faces, I distinctly remember my happy times with two of my best friends there. One's name was Sudhamshu Ghode and another Abhijit Nayak. Ghode had more of a tamed animal's personality and I enjoyed bossing around with him. I used to ride on his back(his name signifying the same is ironic) most of the time and he would whole heartedly agree without ever protesting. It was more of demanding and serving friendship between us and I was always won over by his servitude. I never used to bring my lunch box to school and so I would always devour on Ghode's. Moreover, everybody in the class used to like him for his free manners. Ghode left the school in 7th or 8th grade and our friendship too. But unlike Ghode's, my friendship with Abhijit lasted till 12th grade. We were bound to become best buds since we had been in the school from 1st grade, if I remember correctly. I am still in touch with him although very rarely we exchange greetings. But nonetheless he still holds respect in my heart. Nadu, as we used to call him fondly, had a typical attribute in his body language. His body always had this motion, or vibration thing attached to it. Yes, his body was always moving, very slightly ofcourse but distinct enough. And he used to drool alot too. I mean, he never had this control over his saliva, that in the middle of some arguments over some problems in mathematics, while explaining, some saliva would suddenly come out of his mouth. Nadu, the name was derived from this act of his only. Although when we were young, we took pride in mentioning each other and to the world that we are best friends of each other. I don't know if during the later part of the school he had the same feeling or not, since we kinda matured and behaved like adults, had friendly arguments often, went to different coaching centers etc, but he still remains my best friend of my school. We both might have changed from what we used to be in 6th grade than what we became in 12th grade, but I still considered him my close friend owing to the long history we had shared.
There were some other school friends too whom I remember. There was Abhisek Mohanty, our Biolgy teacher's son. He was the best man in an argument and I always knew that noone can beat this dude in a friendly (or unfriendly) verbal fight. Then there was this haughty, hollow-inside group comprising of Preetam, Shivananda whom I always disliked cos they will never loose a chance to degrade you infront of bunch of girls or other smart ass friends of theirs to make an impression of themselves upon them, no matter how old your friendship might have been. They were friends with their kind of people only, as I believed. Then there was Rahul, the guy I hated the most throughout my school life. Although his younger brother was a gem, in his nature, but Rahul was a deeply selfish guy. We were friends too, since we had our houses nearby and he was also a teacher's son, like me and I used to hang out in his house alot when we were kids but as we grew old, he became more and more selfish as to the point that I couldn't stand his attitude anymore.
Among all my schooldays friends, there was only one, and only one person whom I admired, respected and adored truly as a friend, was Barun. He was such a jolly and innocent looking and selfless person and I always was bowled over by the purity of his heart and behavior. A true gem. Towards the end although he too became somewhat biased by being in the company of Preetam and Shiva and Rahul, and sometimes I didn't like him but when he wasn't with those guys, he was again the same, the pure form of himself. Thats why I liked him.
There were bunch of other friends too like Pankaj, with whom although my interactions were for small time but his jokes would always crack me up, I considered him a truly funny guy, pulling out jokes from nowhere and spoken as to bound to crack you up. Then there was Bittu, the living symbol of the result of a struggling family. His father had died long ago, his mother worked in the CRPF hospital as a nurse and wasn't earning much because in his house there would one find nothing except bare minimum stuff necessary for a living yet Bittu and his brother were fine, elegent gentleman type in their acts. They studied well too. Another person deserving a mention here is Jyoti Ranjan Mohapatra. He was in the C section (I was in A) and it was only during 11th and 12th grade that we came together to sit in one class, namely, the Science section. I spent my 2 years (11th and 12th) and major part, with him. We were in the same tuitions, same class. His unmatched quality to make fun of teachers, to be able to copy their expressions, voice, movements and everything and his ability to contrive his wildest imaginations and putting the teachers in there and make jokes around them influenced me so much, I must admit, today the person that I have become, the way I act, the way I try to make a joke and many more things are very much like Jyoti's. Except a few, I don't have contacts with these guys but I still remember their faces and occasional incidents, the moments I shared with them. Priceless!!!!

I was never comfortable talking with girls of my class. I remember faces of some of 'em, because they were cute and beautiful, but I don't have any moments, any conversation with them that I can recall. There was one girl, Smruti, whom I can consider as my best friend among girls because probably I spent more time talking with her during my school days than any other girl. She was also the school staff's daughter and lived in our own colony, which should explain the deeper acquaintance between us. Moreover, I think her mom also used to hate Rahul and so she would rather ask me to come over to her house and help her daughter with some questions in the history chapters than ask Rahul. Its a different thing that I would ask Rahul about the answer to those questions (for he was the topper in our class) and then go to Smruti's house and replicate the same answers on her notebooks. Smruti is in US, married and with a baby too. I am in touch with her, and I enjoy talking with her, remembering our good old CRPF days.

After 12th, I took a year's break, to prepare for my entrance exams. During that time I used to go to 2-3 places for my tuitions on Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics and I made some good friends there too but have lost contacts with all of them. During those days, I met with DibyaJyoti and we became instant friends, little did I know that this friendship will extend for another 6 years and during which time I'll come to know more of him and be influenced by his ideas.

The came the best 4 years of my life. My B-tech at NIT Rourkela. Staying away from home, for the first time, staying in a hostel with 300 other students and this for another 4 years and sure enough I met with some of the best people of this world and am glad of it. Among the closest friends I had when I left Rourkela was Ashwini Maharana. My best friend of NIT. A person of not so much of pure heart but still quite pure, not much of a funny guy but yet funny sometimes, not much of helpful yet very helpful almost all of the time, and moreover the one quality for which I'll always know him, Unlucky. No matter how careful he tries to be in every dealings of his, yet he would fall into some trap, be duped, made a scapegoat, always dominated by others. He was kind of the favorite, lovable by all others in the hostel and I take pride in the fact that he considered me his best friend, and we stayed in adjacent rooms during the final year, the year when students enjoy the college life the most. Although these days we talk less often but I still keeps an update on him. Next on the list would be Abhisek Bose definitely. The true prize of my 4 yrs at NIT. My only regret was, I got to meet and know him better only during the 3rd year but we became such good friends, I am sure we will remain the same till I breathe my last. He is the type of person that I am myself in many respect. Only that he has one more good quality, he has been very regular being in contact with me. I admit I sometimes don't feel like going out and reaching to my close friends, but Bose has never failed me in that front and I always feel like on top of world, cross my limits of ecstasy when I see Bose's call , or his "Hi" over gtalk. As I said, he is like my own reflection. Whenever I had asked him for any assistance, he was there with me even to the extent that he agreed to come with me to Puri on a stormy evening because I had this desire to spend a whole night on the beach. Not to mention that he made the arrangements for us to stay in a dharamshala which was on the beach itself. He truly is a true friend, above all. I would not have found the courage to visit Puri of my own, more so because it was raining cats and dogs those days and major parts of the state were under flood waters and as a matter of fact the following morning, ours was the last train from Puri to Bhubaneswar after which the railways services were disrupted between Puri and Bhubaneswar since waters had flooded the region. I'll always admire him for what he has been to me.
Apart from the two there were couple of others whom I consider close too, like Abhisek Saran, a pure, innocent and genius boy, Sibashish Acharya, a charismatic, life sacrificing friend, and many more.

Then came my two year stint as a software engineer working for Samsung, at Noida. And the single most influential people during this time on me was none other than Dibyajyoti. I must mention that he was with me at NIT too, all through the 4 years, he in mechanical branch, me in computer science but still living in the same hostel, with regular visits to each other's room and frequent hang outs but I never got to know him better. I must also mention that Barun and Preetam were with me too, in the NIT all through the 4 years, them in Mining (Barun changed to mechanical after 1st yr) but this was the time when I grew apart from Barun. He was spending his time mostly with Preetam and and his likes and was behaving like one of them when in their group but surprisingly he was the same old Barun again when alone. So I would talk to him only when I would see him alone or with other friends and avoided him otherwise (I avoided Preetam all the time). With Dibya, it was different. We were kinda close, good friends but I would say, never from within. When in Noida, he was to join CSC so he asked if we three (including Amartya, Samsung) could stay together and I agreed. I never expected to stay with him cos I never really knew him that well but I agreed because I thought its better to stay with someone whom I know something about than with some other guys whom I don't know anything about. While living with him, I would not hide the fact that we had numerous verbal arguments on myriad topics, his views rarely agreeing with mine or vice versa and yet we were hands and gloves on a lot of other matters. Although I used to be irritated alot by some of his acts, esp his casualness towards common household matters yet we both enjoy each other's company, we both would visit places together. Without doubt, he was the best thing, the best friend of mine in Noida's 2 years. We had the same feelings towards Amartya i.e sarcasm and we both kinda enjoyed it. Above all, gradually he made me realize there is no harm in buying a little luxury for yourself, now that we have started earning ourself handsome salaries. He made me realize money is not for stashing away someplace and living a beggar's life but living your life first and then stashing the leftover money. He made me realize that if I don't start living my life now, I might never get the same chance again, and I might as well save me some regret in future. He brought broadness into my thoughts and actions. I was no more irritated over messed up table or bed or be worried about my mobile or MP3 player not working. And this transformation has surely made me very very comfortable with people and things around me.

Then came my stint as a student again, this time in a whole different country, USA. While looking for roommates, owing to my broadness and highly evolved adjusting nature, I never cared with whom I would be living as roommates because I knew, whoever it may be, I'll be able to adjust. Luckily, I found Subrat and Ajit as the best roommates and in turn, friends that I could have found. Although the same doesn't go well with Bibhu because he has mannerisms typical of a geek, a class topper, a blend of selfishness and irritating behavior and uncomfortable with adjusting. In short, not at all open minded. No broad thinking, no broad perspective. He doesn't like sharing his bowls/plates etc for using in microwave by others, he keeps his charger nicely tucked away in his luggage and taking out only once in 4-5 days for charging purpose, doesn't like someone wearing his sandal even to walk inside the house etc etc. Well, I am too much evolved to worry myself over who is using my sandals or who is doing what with my plates/bowls and Subrat and Ajit are exactly like me too and thats why I bond so well with them. Such sense of freedom to use others stuff without feeling any 2nd thoughts invokes a feeling of brotherhood between people and thats why I donot think anything otherwise, no guilty, no shame, nothing, to use Ajit/Subrat's plate or his hard disk or his laptop without his permission, I use it as if its my thing and they use my stuff without any question and seeing them use my stuff I feel very very happy in the fact that they thought me as close enough to use my stuff without asking me anything, as if its all theirs. It makes me feel like we are all brothers. I agreed with Ajit when he said people's perception, thinking, actions are broadened, matured when he has been under a period of financial independence like the time we had(Ajit, Subrat and I have atleast 2 yrs of work experience) and sadly this is absent in Bibhu. May be its true but sometimes I think Bibhu would still remain Bibhu even if he would have 5 yrs of experience earning money. No doubt, Ajit and Subrat are the best things that have happened to me in USA. And Bibhu has been my worst.

This is where I would stop. This is where I am right now but I am sure I'll have more things to fill this place when I move on to new adventures. But one thing is for sure. I am proud of all the friends I have made. They are all exceptional people and I consider myself very fortunate to have company like these.

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