We all go back to old conversations.
Letter-writing went out of fashion a generation or two before ours. We don’t have the perfume, the handwriting. We have nothing to touch, to hold. I’d much rather be turning pages of long, long, long letters, but I make do with what we’ve got.
I scroll up our chat-box; up, up, up, till I find conversations garnished generously with ” ? ”
Then I slowly scroll down, to find more ”
” It marks an important transition. It’s when the need to pretend you were just kidding when you said something nice gave way to saying it, and letting me know that you really meant it.
The conversation never ends. I know when you woke up and what you did all day and why you’re pissed off and where you went and whom you met and what you ate and when you slept. Not much important information there, but I think you have to be really special to know the ordinary things about somebody.
We all go back to old conversations. Those that we pretend never happened. Those that we will never have again. We all go back to them to find some lost happiness, and we do, but now it is tinged with pain. Not intense, but chronic.
So much has changed. It’s awkward to even say “hi” anymore. Would we pretend to not know each other if we met now? Or worse, shake hands, meet like acquaintances. It doesn’t matter. You and I will be just a fraction of all the letting go we’ll have to do in life.
Have I let go? Most certainly I have. It’s not really about not reminiscing anymore or even regretting, but about accepting that it’s all a part and parcel of life. Some stories will find conclusions, some will meander their way into oblivion.
If I have let go, why do I still go back to the conversations? It’s a tough one to explain, but, I think I go back to feel sane. It would drive you crazy to feel a great pain in your shoulders for no reason, but if you saw your dismembered arms, it’d make sense that it hurts. The old conversations will always bear testimony to the fact that there was something that we let go of.
Drowsy monsoon evenings lead your thoughts to strange places. I’d much rather step out, get a good cup of coffee, and have new conversations.
Yamini Periwal is a writer, model, photographer, videographer, artist, chef, traveller and counsellor. (Basically, she’s fidgety and curious, and has a camera, a laptop, pencils, kitchen equipment, her feet and distressed people at her disposal.) Find her on Facebook, twitter and Instagram.