“So no one told you life was going to be this way.
Your job’s a joke, you’re broke, you’re love life’s DOA.
It’s like you’re always stuck in second gear,
Well, it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month, or even your year.
But, I’ll be there for you, when the rain starts to pour.
I’ll be there for you, like I’ve been there before.
I’ll be there for you, cause you’re there for me too.
Nothing like N.O.S.T.A.L.G.I.A., that’s right.
I hadn’t had the chance to watch this particular ‘legendary’ series of our generation, thanks to my limited access to cable television (we didn’t have one at home) during my growing up years. So last year I got a chance to download all 10 seasons and I religiously watched multiple episodes a day, in between classes, after meals and on weekends. I finished watching all 236 episodes amounting to approximately 87 hours of run-time in just two months!
So when I was done watching the series, apart from that familiar void (“Now how am I going to spend my free-time?“), I began to think of what role or importance friends play or hold in my life.
Not counting my parents (who were and continue to remain my best friends ever), I never had the luxury of a constant best friend in my life, like most people do, thanks to my Dad’s government job, which had us moving all over the country during my childhood. We changed neighborhoods and schools like every other year.
But I did make a few decent friends everywhere I went. Like the girl (Jasmitha) and the boy (Pradeep) I grew up with from baby-sitting (pre-Nursery?) to third standard at Canara English Higher Primary School, Dongerkery, Mangalore KA. We learnt to talk, read and write together. The girl was so close to me, poor thing even used to do my homework in primary school. Then there were all my friends in the apartments I grew up, in Mangalore. When we moved to Delhi, I took some time to adjust. The culture shock was huge, I didn’t know a word of Hindi, the rest of the kids used to call me “angrezi babu“, because of my preference to stick to English as a language for communication. But eventually I won them all over, like always. It helps when you are fairly good at academics, sports and co/extra-curricular, helps you get noticed and accepted quicker. Once we moved to Bangalore, I never found children of my age in the neighborhood but I made some great friends in the two schools I went to, the NCC Camp I visited, the coaching centre I went to during my 11th and 12th…
College years are the best years of a person’s life. I absolutely cherish my years at B. M. S. College of Engineering, Basavanagudi, Bangalore KA. I made some awesome friends in those four years, people I will always remember. Now I am into my second year of post graduation at IIT Bombay, and here too I am fortunate to have met some really cool and awesome people who I proudly call my friends.
And then there are some people you just meet as if you are destined to, and they end up becoming really close friends. I have some of those too, including strangers who I met online (oh yes, technology really has made the world a smaller place), who I would never had known if not for the internet, are now really good friends of mine.
The only regret, if at all I must have any, is that if I were to make a list of all the friends I have had all my life, and then divide them in two groups on the basis of gender, it would heavily be loaded in favour of the boys. It’s a pity I could never really overcome my shyness enough to let my guard down in front of girls, despite my best efforts. But even then I don’t really regret it. Of the few female friends I did manage to make, almost all of them are absolute gems, each one of them. I think I am really fortunate and they will always mean the world to me. Besides, females are known to have a very different way of thinking when compared to males, it pays to have a second opinion that you never saw in the first place, and I have made every use of it, whenever I could.
Also, a big thank you to facebook.com, because of which almost all the friends I ever made are now in my friend list. I can get in touch with them with a single click. No, not the “Poke” button. Okay fine! More than a single click. Gawd!
As for me, I think if you put together a Chandler Bing, ¾ of Ross Geller and a ¼ of Monica Geller, and then divide it in two, one of them would be me. Think it over.