So it was quite a thrill to reconnect, after a gap of almost thirty years, with an old neighbour. She is ten years older than I am. When, I was five, she was fifteen and quite the girl I look up to. That she cared enough to spend time with me, take me around the neighbourhood and chat and listen to me, really gave me quite a thrill. She was the big sister I didn’t have!
But we moved away. And when I next met her, I was in my teens and she was in her twenties – still loving and affectionate but very lost. Always brilliant, she kept trying one line of study and then the other and still hadn’t decided on what she wanted to be. More precisely, it seemed to me that she couldn’t decide who she wanted to be. She had been engaged to a man much older than her, and from all accounts it was not a suitable match. She, thankfully, broke off the engagement, and kept drifting in both with her relationships and her line of work. She kept experimenting with different religious practices too. All of this seemed very confusing to me as a teenager and I didn’t quite know what to make of her.
We tried to keep in touch, but it never worked out, because we didn’t seem to have anything in common any more. We heard from common friends, that she had moved to the US for her studies. A few years later, we got an invitation to her wedding. But it was in the US and naturally, I couldn’t attend. Her groom was an American and since her family had emigrated too, we lost touch completely.
But I thought of her often and decided to look for her on Facebook. Happy to find her there, we connected – but our contact was limited after the initial exchanges. Since she didn’t share her profile picture, I had no clue what she looked like now and was reluctant to ask. Last year, she began to share a lot on Facebook – nothing too personal. However, the thoughts she shared on life, love, spirituality and religion resonated with me. It seems that for once we were both in the same place – midlife! 🙂
Then last year, she told me she was coming to India and was stopping over at Mumbai. We had to meet. And we did at a mutually conveniently located restaurant. I was looking out for an older woman, so imagine my surprise when in walked this woman who looked nothing like a soon-to-be sixty year old. She looked like she was in her thirties! Also, I remember that she had a lot of acne marks. I confess that the first question I asked her was how she managed to look that way. She told me that she regularly practiced yoga and had had some dermatological treatment for her marks about which I could learn more here. After much conversation, laughter and telling of our stories, I was thrilled to learn that she was happily married, very content with her life and her line of work, enjoying her two children, regularly practicing yoga and of course looking like a dream!
Reconnecting and redisovering this old friend is just one of the happy connections that Facebook has made possible for me. Have you had any such experiences on Facebook? Do share.