Sunday, November 22, 2009

Satisfaction

I'm in a gorgeous house in Bangalore. At 1:20 in the morning, with yellow lighting, Sammy Davis Jr. in the background, some chick-lit, good rum and friends who have quietly dozed off after great conversation. A gentle buzz fuzzes up my brain and I think of what has been and what could be. I feel my age.

24.

It's a beautiful age. The perfect mix of nostalgia and potential. The cusp.

Rajat Kedilaya, my IIT coach's son, was this age when I first saw him. He was 24, having finished his engineering at IIT Bombay worked in Korea for a couple of years and come back to Manipal for a few days before he was to start his job as the head of a new division of electronics engineering in Bangalore. It was a Thursday morning, cool and dewy and green and fresh. He'd just finished playing with the new Dachshund of the house, Hooper. He stopped, moved to the ledge and leaned up against the pillar with a faraway look in his eyes and smiled. He smiled the most satisfied smile that I had ever seen in my life.

I walked in through the front gate at the time with my pre-university backpack full of painstakingly prepared notes and a textbook that I'd always meant to read but never did. And I looked at him. He didn't notice me. But at that moment, I knew that I wanted that at 24.

I have it now. My God.

I have loves that I wish I hadn't lost and memories that I know I'll have. The melancholy, bitter-sweet happy-sad hope. My heart is full of contentment.

I can't help but smile. The 16 year old me would have been very happy to see this. Thank you, anyone and everyone who made this possible.
 

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