Almost three decades have lapsed since I met him when he was four years old (perhaps) and how he preferred to have a bath and not just change dress to welcome his mamma's friend. Yes, I was impressed to see the little handsome in spotless white kurta payjama. There was something about him that made me hesitant to ask him: how old are you? In which class you study? Which school? There was something in him that also made me shy to hug him as if he wouldn't welcome this.
And then started a sharing of different kind between two persons with age gap of over two decades- his mom dearest was my friend dearest; he loved to listen to stories and I loved that doing so with him; he wouldn't talk much and nor did I but playing with Bonzo didn't need use of very many words and it was such pure fun! I vividly remember how he giggled on seeing the 'muskaan' on donkey's face in Tinkle (he still treasures) and how 'The Lost Smile' story has been a sort of bond between us. How I would tell him that he was LDS (looking damn smart)-a compliment he didn't forget to remind me of when he was standing as a newly wed groom with his mate welcoming the guests on entrance of Mid Town (aunty, tusin mainoo ajj LDS nahi kahya!). My heart went out to him and I hugged him with my eyes moist.
Just didn't really realise when he grew up. He cared to come to meet me once and in exclusive chilling moments, he became emotional and said: 'aunty,bas tusin udas na hoya karo..m always there.' And I vividly recall how he cared to gift me a suit from his first salary as a commissioned officer in Army.
I am yet to see a boy more meticulous and fastidious. Not a speck of dust in his apartment on any of the aesthetically beautiful furniture, not a thing lying disorganized in kitchen, fridge or a cupboard. How he manages with his workaholism , I wonder.
We share a few words only on mine or his birthday and we meet lesser often but he is a precious and lovely child and my prayers go for him especially today being his special day. Happy birthday, Gugu.