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Today I unfriended two Facebook friends and felt the most maudlin mood sweep over me.

Unwittingly, without any warning, my eyes turned misty, threatening to spill over with tears that always tell a tale.

The first was an American ‘friend’ with whom there had been no communication after the point of “making friends on Facebook. “ Her name cropped up as it is her Birthday today. I went to her wall and saw no activity on it for a few years.

Her profile picture is of a pretty little girl standing by a wooden plank wall in a manicured garden.

Is it an old picture of her? But the photo does not look dated. Is it her daughter?

My thoughts travelled to the uncomfortable zone in relationships however distant or disconnected they may be.

The zone of concern and inexplicable connectedness.

Is she well? How are things with her? Is her family fine? The girl in the picture, is she alright? She must have grown by now!

As I hit the ‘unfriend’ button, my final thoughts were woven with a tiny prayer seeking the person’s wellbeing.

Is that an off shoot of Social Media? That we are forging new relationships, building bridges over rivers we will never cross!!

The second friend also entered the present moment through the Facebook Birthdays notification.

And this remembrance was tear-jerking, pulling at my heart with a certain kind of ferocity.

We had not met in person but had made promises that some day we will.

But we e-met (and that’s a thing now), spoke several times, liked and commented on each other’s posts and pictures like friends do.

Sometimes we chatted late in the night. At even beyond the witching hour; at 2 AM or 3 AM when the world around us had fallen silent. Like old friends do! Were we each other’s 3 AM friend, at that time when our lives were intersecting?

Yes, we would have met at some stage. But her life had different plans. It had to finish its cycle in this form, walk with the angels for sometime, before acquiring a new shape and avatar.

Somewhere out there in the realm beyond! Or perhaps somewhere out here in our very immediate, in our very proximal, as a beautiful flower or a fruit laden tree. For she was a very pretty woman, with a warm heart and such fine green fingers that created magic from the soil!

No I didn’t wish her a happy birthday. I saw no point. But I stole away moments of silence; as I travelled within to remember her, to hold a little requiem for her, to think about the rich life she had led — of meaning and purpose.

I took away a few lessons from how she had lived, made mental notes, folded them neatly and stored them in a crevice of my mind.

Hopefully, those leaves will not lay forgotten and will be peeled out when I need them the most.

But for now I unfriended her. Like shutting off the door to a section of my past.

She died almost a year back. Her ashes had been immersed in the holy Ganga soon after.

Today, I buried her physical form. Even if figuratively, the act just had to be performed. I have held my personal wake for her.

She will cross my mind several times, I know. We have many common friends. The crosswires of communication will happen. Old posts will be resurrected. And then there is the feature of old memories!

She will come to my mind. She will pay me a visit each time I will cook the recipe she shared, every time I will rework on the landscaping of my gardens, on every occasion when I will recall the virtues of meditation that she would extol for me.

But more than anything else, she will remain alive — in spirit — in some corner of my heart like friends, past and present, do!!

Photo by Courtney Smith on Unsplash




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L Aruna Dhir

L Aruna Dhir

International Hospitality Writer, Author, Poet, YouTuber. National poll winning PR Strategist & India’s first-ever Creative Writer with Archies Greetings!

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