NOSTALGIA AND MEMORIES...
I read something in Milan Kudera's "Ignorance" , which , at once, put into words what I have always felt but never been able to put my finger on (well, I am no Milan Kundera when it comes to words). He says : " The greek word for 'return' is nostos. Algos means 'suffering'. So nostalgia is the suffering caused by an unappaeased yearning to return."
You cannot describe the feeling of nostalgia more accurately. At some or the other time, all of us remember some foregone moments, experiences...and with that memory comes an unexplainable feeling of sadness. However happy we might be in the present, that nostalgic moment makes that remembered time so much richer, brighter. All the sharp edges of that time seems dulled, all which shines out in memory is its smoothness and gaity.....and we long to be transported back in that time, just for once, to "return". Kundera has mentioned nostalgia in several of his works. In "The unbearable lightness of being", he says:
" In the sunset of dissolution, everything is illuminated by the aura of nostalgia, even the guillotine" (here he is referring to the french revolution). So thats what nostalgia does, in its soft light, even the most unpardonable seem human..."because all is connected to that memory of a lost period of our life, a period that will never return"
Childhood remains my most cherished memory, and whenever I think of those times, I am overcome with an undefinable feeling, a mixture of sadness and wonder. Was it really I who experienced all this and why thinking of those wonderful times make me feel sad?
Whenevr I think of those days, I want to talk about it, share it with someone. Most of the times, I tell Chandru. But whenver I start telling him of the things we used to as kids, I feel an inadequacy creep into my words, what I say is not what I feel. At best, I can only superficially relate some incidences, but what I long to do is share with him the utter delight I used to experience at that time...and the desolate sadness overcoming me now. What I want is for him to share these feeling with me, understand the churning in my heart, the longing for what is no more.
So many strange things trigger my memories. A song which comes on radio suddenly..no , not necessarily a beautiful song, just some drifting melody. It brings alive some long forgotten summer afternoon in our sprawling british bunglow-style house where I spent a large part of my childhood. I see vividly, myself and sumi, along with our cook's daughters (they lived in the servant's quarter), sittting benenath a huge peepal tree in our backyard. Sharing raw mangoes and fantastic stories, while the adults slept off the summer heat.
Some days, at dusk, that painfully lovely time between afternoon and evening, the fading rays of sun illuminate a cob-web filled corner of my past. Our visit to our nani's place during holidays, with all our cousions there. I remember pretending to sleep with my eyes closed, takeing care not to flutter my eyelids, while straining my ears to catch snatches of adult conversation in the room, uncovering secrest I am not meant to know.
A smell, a line from a book, a make-belive game I see my daughter play, a mail from a long-forgotten friend, a movie scene, a conversation...so many catalysts to open the flood-gates.
Sometimes I dream of meeting those childhood friends.......in my imagination this meeting is so lovely, where we talk of the past days. But I wonder, how it will actually be, will our memories be the same, the intensity similar, the rememberance shared, so fond or some bitter?
Maybe the memories are best left in our hearts...let them age naturally.like sweet /sour pickle.
I file away today's snapshots in the recess of my memory......someday I wil dust away the years from them, shine the torch of nostalgic light on them and wipe a tear away.
- Gurgaon, Haryana, India
- Dont claim to be a great writer but love to pen down those random thoughts in my head,share what I feel,however irreverant or unconventional they may be.Here's my take on things which matter to me,delight me,comfort me and give wings to my fancy, be it fashion,living,music,movies,books,family or Love! Peace to all...and restlessness to those who dare to think differently!A science graduate, a fashion-post-graduate,a wife, a mom but above all a lover of all things beautiful and sensitive. Romance, wine and music..I can live solely on these.