More often than not, the friends you make in school turn into distant memories. Jokes once shared and fights once fought is something you ponder upon with a weary smile wishing you could relive them. Just like how I wish I had with me right now the only best friend from school who made me feel as alive today as I was when I was a fifteen year old girl in a school uniform.
Saunak, here’s to you:
To being the best song-writer in the entire universe: I’d often complain about the rarity of my name. It is so unusual that no song has ever been written about it. There have been songs about a Carol, in “Oh Carol” by Neil Sedaka, Jane in “Diary of Jane” by Breaking Benjamin, Cecilia in “Cecilia” by Simon and Garfunkel but no song has ever been written about an Aurene and never will be because it is so damn unusual. So being the amazing soul that he is, he wrote about me, and he was the first. So, I finally had my song, “Aurene” by Saunak Shrestha.
To being multi-cultured to such an extent that till date I’m confused where he is actually from: When he was new in school, he was the talk of the town for being, “the cute guy from Nepal”. Then, I learn he’s half Japanese too yet he decided to join an Indian school. Never mind, I miss talking to him about stories of his home that would make his eyes go all dreamy or like the way little puddles gleam during the monsoons. The way he’d talk about his sister Sujeena, his best friend Elvis who he misses, to the snowfall in Japan, to how insane the nightlife is in Nepal. He fed my soul.
To being extremely talented but never wanting to show it off: He plays the guitar and writes better than anyone I have ever met yet he would guard this talent like a top secret government file because if it got disclosed all the countries in Asia would enter into a nuclear war with each other.
To panic calls: When he started dating the cutest girl in the entire school and when I too found someone, Sometimes our better halves never really got us, and I knew I could rant about it all to him and for some godforsaken reason it would make me happy when he’d complain about her to me. It made me feel like I still took up quite some space in his life.
To conversations about life in general: I have never in my existence of 19 years met a man, or a woman who has talked to me in a way that would inspire me , it was just our conversations and us. The conversations with him are what I have always cherished through school and now in college because they grounded me, reminded me of what a free spirit I was and maybe still am.
I pity myself, because I often forget where my roots are. Some people who don’t know me well in college believe me to be an introvert, maybe sometimes reserved. I have quite a few friends in college but I make sure never to get too attached, a defense mechanism I use to keep me from falling too deep, because if I do I drown and then there’s no one to rescue me.
He however, gave me a friendship of a lifetime, one that I have never regretted, one that built me. While the world thought I was plain, this was his definition of me when I was at my lowest: “Aurene you were like this positive energy. Like every day I hate mornings and people smiling and I’m like the hell is wrong with you all its 8 in the god damn morning and you’d just jump inside the class with a smile and your weenie the pooh voice and the fresh look on your face looking like the fucking sun from telly tubbies. You’re one weirdo, no judging cause so am I but like I miss that. Don’t change you. Stay same for all of our sakes.”
When he said this to me my eyes welled up with tears which I held in because I couldn’t recollect being that happy, I couldn’t even picture that scene of me in the morning. I guess being older than 15 was the worst mistake of my life. But this is exactly why I will cherish this friendship until time immemorial because he reminds me of the brighter side. They say out of sight is out of mind, well I haven’t seen him in years. Yet, I have him as my source of positivity reaching out to me from across countries and oceans. Mind you he’s not perfect, I know I make it sound that way but he’s had his share of screw-ups too but if life were kind enough to give me one last wish, I’d say take me back to that classroom where I found my best-friend. Let me hear the school bell ring again, please let me sit with him at the back of the classroom as we whisper about everything life has to offer, under the teacher’s over-powering voice.