“And it came to pass in those days, as it had come before & would come again, that the Dark lay heavy on the land & weighed down the hearts of men, & the green things failed, & hope died.

And men cried out to the Creator, saying;

O Light of the Heavens, Light of the World, let the promised one be born of the mountain, according to the prophecies, as he was in ages past & will be in ages to come.

Let the prince of the morning sing to the land that green things will grow & valleys give forth lambs.

Let the arm of the Lord of the Dawn shelter us from the Dark, & the great sword of justice defend us.

Let the Dragon ride again on the winds of time...”

… And I suddenly woke up. Searching for something around, was it my surroundings unfamiliar I inquired or the shock of reading those lines reverberating through my body made me tremble. But as soon as I got hold of a worldly object in my hand, everything fell into place & I was at Home again (Borrowed bed & blanket, but equally homely feeling nonetheless).

Today was supposed to be just the day God created it for; Rest. I intended to fulfill his wishes, but waking up once & that to at such a demonic time (0830 hours, the time after which sleep once gone is ‘Gone with the Wind’ for the day) gave no scope for further peaceful breathes.

I, stitched to my phone after 2 full days of parting, telepathically, started broadcasting the message of my arrival to the distant civilization X/Y/Z, caring not for a moment they know of it at all or not. The brightness of the screen brightened my face just the same. Revitalized with the morning chores of spreading wishes, I went on for the planning of the day to meet one last important friend (Setting aside any comparisons that is how you can gracefully write about next to best people you have around).

After the handover-takeover of the recursive gifts & the last minute shopping spree, at least my self was ready to part with the journey for yet another. Goodbyes aren’t sweet & I am not a critique. So as the pillars of time collapsed behind me, I stormed ahead with the plan. Our three-wheeler ride (travel part X) fumed through the relatively traffic free roads of Dream City (Mumbai, if not any other) one last time.

Airport seemed dull if not a vibrant den of cultures, clinging to their own status quo & that is where we met our ‘Lost in Translation’ friend Vivek. Rahul was supposed to meet us back in Ahmedabad, because he booked his tickets late which was the consequence of his planning only after all his prior plans allowed him to plan for this plan. But how could we let him ride alone.

So I called our common colleague (Rohini, the singer & a poetess of her own period), who incidentally was aboard the same train and asked her to entertain our bored friend, who had already seen too much adventure for a lifetime. I got a wishful thank from him afterwards (Which was more physical and less verbal by standards).

The last interesting experience that came our way was this odd Gujarati uncle who got caught with a small cylindrical box which rose suspicion during Security check ahead of us. He was stopped then & there, & asked to empty his belongings. Initially reluctant, he finally gave in to their stern gazes & firm threat cum requests. The cylinder turned out to be & old piggy bank with a collection of many old coins which he was carrying to his homeland (he must have had some currency exchange rates in mind, because taking coins of the same country via air is nowhere a cheap option). The journey afterwards ended amazingly quick, as we were more interested, us three, in remembering all the tragedies tackling us, & our response like the water bends around a rock (When you are uphill, it advisable to nurture & follow the code of gravity).

The culmination of this trip was the brief exchange of words, feelings, stories, promises & a few more gifts with a nearer & dearer friend in the old city which dwelled the Sabarmati Ashram (Amdavad che). The journey was an end with much realizations & comparable regrets closing to none as the memoirs flew over my head telling many of the vital experiences of my life (Primarily, never entirely trust the machines. People are not so bad either).

What led me to this one after years of misery & indifference towards aimless climbs & worthless excursions was bidding farewell to my very first friend from college, an acquaintance, a colleague, a comrade, a brother & company, Rahul Gupta. The idea of ending a 6 years long journey of academia, activities inside & out, our tantrums together, our devotions redefined & transformed mature competent temperaments, with a journey that inculcated what we once were (naïve, wild, amazing, aimless & wool-headed bunch of somber celibates) turned out to be naught but an indication. An indication that cleared any predicament about this being anywhere soon to be the last of our jaunts, opening the world of exploration & breakaways as well as a reason to be physically & intellectually a ‘Pride’ together (for us), & ‘Parliament’ combined (for society).

Some say our destiny is tied to the land, as much a part of us as we are of it. Others say fate is woven together like a cloth, so that one’s destiny intertwines with many others. It’s the one thing we search for, or fight to change. Some never find it. But there are some who are led. The choices you make, define your struggle. The struggle you do defines your character. The character you build defines your rationale, which in turn, defines you.

Mine be vested in the voyage, & before the storm gallops & eats me away, let the Silent Sea be my fate…

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