Four Hours To Bridge A Quarter Century.

My friend Nandu who lives in Bengaluru sent me this story as comments on my post Synchronicity Strikes Again. Rather than leave it as a comment, I thought that I should share the story with my readers.

I last met Nandu’s daughter almost a quarter century ago when I had gone to their home in Bengaluru for a farewell dinner for me. She must have blossomed into a remarkable lady from what I can make out from her persistence and desire to make her father happy. I hope to meet her sometime in the near future.

After I left Bengaluru in 1990, I had lost touch with Nandu too but it was the internet that brought us back together a couple of years ago, thanks to another mutual friend who had been in touch with both of us all these years. Such things do happen!

Here is the story from Nandu.

Our daughter visited us from Mumbai a couple of weeks ago and we did the usual “family stuff ” . Out of the blue she asked me if I had succeeded in re establishing contact with a college class mate Prakash (whom she had met as a child). When I answered in the negative she asked the usual questions – did I try FB , Google – I responded “yes , but drew a blank ” .

She then recalled that he worked for a private company in Mumbai many years ago , so that might be a good place to start the search . I was not very confident since people change jobs and the tracks grow cold . But she persisted and got the telephone numbers of that company from Just Dial and called a mobile contact number at around 5.30 pm. The gentleman Mr X who answered seemed quite intrigued by her query and even strangely touched by it . There was a lot of background noise since Mr X was at a train station ! He had vaguely heard of my friend and recalled that he had left that company around 10 years ago . That did not sound very encouraging .

He however recalled the name of another employee with whom my friend was close to and provided the mobile number of that gentleman . My daughter immediately called that number and the person Mr Y admitted to knowing my friend and said he would call back shortly . Nothing happened . We gave up hope and my daughter went out for an evening with her classmates whom she had not met in a while .

My wife and I finished our dinner and settled down to watch a movie . Just then at 9.30 pm my mobile rang and Lo & Behold it was my long lost friend Prakash ! I wondered how he got my number but more than that, just floored by the fact that I was actually speaking to him after more that 25 years . He too sounded ecstatic and could barely contain his excitement . Apparently Mr Y had contacted Prakash and had provided my daughter’s mobile phone number , so Prakash called her and was given my mobile number .

All this in a matter of 4 hours ! But it took a random visit by our daughter , a chance question asked by her and then a bit of Holmesian perseverance on her part !

Prakash and I have since exchanged photographs and caught up with most of the water that has flowed under the proverbial bridge since we last spoke . No doubt we shall meet again in the not too distant future !

A Death And A Reconnection.

My sister in law Sudhira died last Sunday in a hospital in Chicago. She had been in hospital on a support system since the 18th of December. I was kept abreast of her hospitalisation and death by her daughter Nina and other relatives in India who too were getting bulletins.

I had known Sudhira longer than I had known my late wife. Sudhira married my then best friend Kittu in 1961. I was present at the birth of Nina and Nina was the first infant that I ever carried in my arms.

Kittu and Sudhira were also my great support system during my bachelor days at Hyderabad and naturally, all my friends knew them as well. Among them was a group of four sisters who were all part of my life then and about who I shall write another post some other time. Without me being aware of it, Sudhira had been in touch with two of them all these years though I lost touch with all the sisters from around 1964 when I had shifted to Madras now known as Chennai.

One of the sisters, now living in Canada had come to know of Sudhira’s death early yesterday morning and had rung up one of the sisters in India to pass on my phone number obtained from Nina with a request to call me and tell me about Sudhira’s death. So that sister Theresa, rang me up from Kerala and spoke to me after almost half a century and we caught up with all the news about our marriages, children, grand children, careers, etc and also about the where and what-abouts of our respective family members.

For me it was like a flash-back in cinemas taking me back to my youth and a time vastly different to what it is now. It took me the whole day yesterday to recover from that surprise reconnection.

The death of a loved one and modern communication devices put two old friends back in touch with each other after half a century!