Past Memories of Present Tense

Last night, I slept late. By my standards. At 11:30. I stayed up reading Anne Tyler’s The Ladder Years, which was not worth the staying up for. But well, reading. Can’t blame its hold on me. 🙂 It’s stronger than any person so far! In between, the fragments of a dream. I don’t recollect the dream, only the sensation of the dream, which was neither warm or forbidding, but much like life, just a memory of nothingness. Then it rained. I woke again well after midnight to hear the cat meowing. We have a resident cat now with its kittens. It has made the trash can outside its home, and frequently at nights, I can hear odd noises – who ever said cats are silent? – as it scrambles and turns the trash inside out.

Uneasily, I slept. Only to wake again at 5:30AM. It was not light yet. But not dark either. A bird or two chirped. Restless, I tried to sleep again. Eventually, I gave up the effort to perform the Sun Salutation yoga that is my latest fad. But I was still uneasy. Was it the dream? Was it the cat? Was it life? I couldn’t know.

And then, later in the morning, at work I had a visitor. A good old friend, who I have known for a decade now. We met leisurely over an akki rotti (traditional South Indian pancake) at a nearby restaurant, chatted, and that’s when that uneasiness became apparent in its absence. All I had required was someone to talk to – the treasured warmth of old friendship, the companionship of understanding, an ear to listen to, and the fun of being with someone  with whom you who have shared happy memories. And that’s so important. To be with someone you have had happy times with. For then, it helps you believe that if you were happy once, you can be so again. The past needs no remembering, but sometimes, it needs a little prompting. And I am glad I met my past today. The happy past. After August 10th, when I had to meet and confront the worst in my past, this was timely. And magical.

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