Friday, September 07, 2012

THE GIRL IN WHITE

Artwork by Samatha Zaza : www.cldfx.com
Let me narrate a recurring memory in my life. There was a senior of mine in Wynberg Allen (a boarding school in Mussoorie where I finished my Plus 2), who I deemed the most beautiful girl in the whole wide world. Now there could be many reasons for that. I'd been in a boys' school for 8 years and hadn't seen too many pretty girls. Heck, I'd hardly seen any girls till then. Nevertheless, there was something special about her. Perhaps, it was her confidence in the knowledge that she was  desired by pretty much all the boys at school. Perhaps it was her natural athleticism, or that she could look so beautiful in spite of no make up & with the compulsory, nerdy double-plait. Every time I'd lay my eyes on her, I'd blush. The warm, comforting sunshine of Mussoorie had nothing to do with it. Rather, it seemed to dim every time she'd walk by, as if paying homage to a form more radiant than itself!

I was a painfully shy boy in school, and she seemed to enjoy that. She'd deliberately engage me in conversations to see  how I'd respond and burst into peals of giggles at my timid reactions. And then one day, fate brought us together in an English play, "The Mousetrap" by Agatha Christie. It had a fantastic premise, a brilliant cast (of which she was one) and a good director in our English professor. I, by virtue of being a meek newbie, was thrust the responsibility of being the prompter (a position no one desired) and I accepted with some degree of glee. It not only allowed me to bunk sports hour to watch a play come to life, with the fleshing out of it's characters but also to see her in the flesh every single day. 


I never, for once, had the stomach to tell her how besotted I was, but I guess some things are so obvious that they need not a word. Oh, to silently sit in the wings like a mute, secret admirer and catch a glimpse of her occasionally smiling at me. Yes, it was a massive, MASSIVE crush, and something close had never happened before, never after.  When she passed out of school, my first thought was (I kid you not): "How am I going to get through one whole year without seeing her every single morning?" At that tender, innocent age, a term like "this too shall pass" did not exist for me. Heck, for that one crush, it hasn't till today! Since that overwhelmingly cheesy encounter 13 years ago, I have overcome my awkwardness around women & met extremely smart, talented & gorgeous ladies. But something about that time, the circumstances & her face refuses to let up.

What is my one indelible memory of her? Accidentally bumping into her in a dark alley on the eve of the annual Hindi play. I was running late (as usual) and was hurtling full speed down the path to the auditorium when I almost knocked her over; she in resplendent white, like an angel sent from the purest heavens, just for me. She held her breath; she wasn't allowed to be outside & obviously feared being caught. I, on the other hand, was awestruck; arrested by her downcast eyes and the strands of hair blowing over her face. Even though it was dark, I could see her pale skin glow ever so bright.  And I wondered, where is the goddamned background music when you really need it? We stood there for what seemed like an eternity, locked our breathless gazes for the briefest of moments and walked our ways. And to think that this could happen only in a film! Those surreal moments stay locked in my memory to this day...

I wonder where she is today. All attempts to trace her have lead to nought in this seemingly small world. Then again, perhaps I'm not meant to find her. Because some memories are best left unperturbed, fresh as they were in the morning dew in the hills of Mussoorie...

16 comments:

  1. shayal Sheth10:07 AM

    awww!! yes cheesy but very sweet!! :)

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  2. have had a lot of crushes with such endings...however your's seem a lot more intense.....nicely described.....check out my blog if you can http://sarasintrigues.blogspot.com/ .....

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  3. This is should be a part of "true love", a compilation of short love stories by Robert Fulghum.. he is in the process of writing book 2 and has invited stories from around the world to be a part of his book.. u should give it a shot...coz this is beautiful..

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  4. Awww... this is so cute a blog! The best part being you still remember every bit of it! If she reads this, she will feel so happy!! :) And who knows, may be she contacts you!

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  5. We all have this, a crush or a 'love' of our younger years whose memory is etched into us. How we would want to be with that person again to say and do things we could not then. Well written, brought back fond memories of my own

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  6. Have you tried facebook? That should help you trace her down. Also, you could post her name and use the network of the internet to find out where she is :)

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  7. Omg. That was so cute. xD I mean I was smiling through out the time. I was sort of in horrible mood and I read this and now I feel happy. ^_^
    Reminded me of my school crush. And yes, it was a HUGE crush. And, my first crush. He was my school senior. I guess I was in 5th standard and he was in 7th when I saw him for the first time. When I was in 10th, the same thoughts were messing with my head. "HOW WILL I SPEND NEXT TWO YEARS OF MY LIFE WITHOUT SEEING HIM?" I did know his house though. His dad was the owner of the fuel station so he was obviously famous and the fuel station and his house were attached. I never talked to him. But for some reason, there were so many awkward moments between us. One of the weirdest moment was when we had this school event. We were divided into different houses and each house had a stall. So, I was standing in my stall and he was standing in his. And music started playing. You won't believe what song it was. It was "Labon ko Labon se milao" from the movie Bhool Bhoolaiyaa. He was holding red roses in his hand. And I don't know what I was doing but we just stood there looking at each other. None of us looked anywhere else. Eh. I can never ever miss his smile. Dimples digging his cheeks. I remember everything. Awkward. xD I still get to see him sometimes in my town. But, oh well. xD

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  8. Anonymous10:24 AM

    My favorite Indian born and raised Chinese blogger (Singer/Actor, former Dentist) just ruined it for me by writing about his childhood crush. Listen buddy if you didn't end up with her then cut your Bollywood false romance crap and please return to your normal intellectual blogging. East Indians are big on writing and speaking in cliche after cliche and you are one of the few who actually use your own intellect to stimulate our knowledge hungry minds. I pray that you don't continue this nonsense as it will weaken your image (Yes, we get it you're only human) and cause foreign readers like myself to tune you out. I have been following your blog for many years and I feel so irritated after reading this.

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    Replies
    1. Meiyang Chang11:52 PM

      Hahaha! I'm grateful you've been following my blog. I'm also amused at your extreme reaction to this particular blog post. My blog was never about current affairs or the ways of the world but about myself & what I make of it. I've always written about my views, travels, projects et al. This was just one such memory I deemed fun to share. Too bad it wasn't of your taste. I hope you'll like the rest of the blog ��

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    2. @anonymous. I mean.. seriously I am exasperated. Its his blog , his thoughts. GOT IT!!!

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  9. @Chang.Hmmm ...we have all been their, but seriously why dont you try @worldthrumyeyes's advice(in case if you havent), and do let us know if you track her down

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    1. Would you believe it if I said that in this increasingly shrinking world, all attempts to rediscover her through social media forums, telecommunications & the old-fashioned buddy network have failed to yield a result? Guess it's not that small a world after all ;)

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  10. This one, I'm sure almost everyone can relate to themselves. The moments of hyper-ventilation when u get a glimpse of that special face is sublime.

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  11. Beautiful! Made me smile throughout the narrative. :)

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  12. I love the touch you gave in the end :) May be something pure, genuine will never fade from our minds & will always stay in a cushioned cosy places in our hearts even if the years fade.

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  13. Anonymous7:07 PM

    hmmm.....quite novelistic depiction.... hope this post continued....:) ....
    by the way.. is there a "Like" button to like the post... - apg

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