The last time I saw him was at the mall. In the groceries section. I recall we were in the toiletries aisle. I was totally concentrating on my brand of hand wash when he just appeared. Right in front of me. It took me a moment to recognise him.
His was the perfect picture. His little girl on the shopping cart. Her hair tied into a pony tail. Wife in tow. A very pretty wife at that. She must have been prettier when he had married her. Now her face was rounder, hair a little disheveled, like every young mother's. But still pretty. He was the same. Lean, dark. And very terse.
There was a minimalistic exchange of pleasantries after which we parted. Then for the rough fifteen minutes that followed, in which I continued to tick items off my shopping list, I remembered that it hadn't been that long a time. Probably two years. We all lose track of time. So many many other things worry us more that there is no mathematical account of time in our lives.
Years go by and we cannot even recall what we were upto when. But it wasn't two years ago even.
The half a dozen tea breaks in the chawl downstairs. And the chit chat. Sometimes, strolls too. It was nothing. I had moved on from that nothing. And he had too.
Time, they say is very powerful. And we all must wait, if nothing else. Everything passes on.
Written for the one who has never forgotten to wish me on a birthday.