It is my brother’s Birthday today – July 29th . He would have been 34 now if he were alive. He passed away when he was 18, and I was 16.
I called up my parents today – of course we did not talk about my brother’s Bday at all. No, we stopped talking about it a long time back in the family – maybe because it is too painful.
It is astonishing how painful it still is to think about him.
Today, I was listing to this podcast on my iphone. It was a TEDtalk on classical music – the composer played Chopin, and as he did he asked the audience to remember somebody in their lives who had been lost. I remembered my brother. As the music played, I remembered our childhood together.
The brother who had, at the age of 6, saved me. Once when my dress had caught fire, and he beat it with his hands till the fire died out. Once when I was caught in the middle of a road in between traffic, and did not know what to do. The brother who I had fought with endlessly. Who, when I cried because I did not top my class in my 10th exams, carried me in his arms, and scolded me for being silly! Who introduced me to Bertrand Russell – which he was reading at the age of 13 – God only knows why.
This is to the prankster – who once sent me a postcard from Ghy to Nagaon with these cryptic words – Bhanti, Bald is Beautiful! I wasnt quite sure what he meant – when he landed up in Nagaon with his head shaven off.
To the guy who was just beginning to fall for girls – and have girls fall for him. He was 6 ft tall, after all! I suspect he was seeing somebody, though he wouldnt tell me.
This is for the guy who let me, his pesky sister, come up to his study room, and sleep for the entire evening. And take a photo and show it to the whole family to show what the studious girl did!
And for the guy who would get me into the cricket games with his buddies. 10 guys, and a little girl learning to bat.
This is to that brother, who I loved more than anybody or anything. And who I miss more than anything else!