Through thick and thin,  is something we used to define friendship, in one of my favourite books Lace, Shirley Conran has her character Maxine pronounce it is sick and sin, since she was French, that’s how friendship stuck in my place through thick, thin, sick and sin.

As I read the book during my teens I do not really remember much about it. there is a girl, a porn star who traces the mother who abandoned her, and out comes the tale of four girls I think between wars, so the changing role of women, attitudes, the emerging working woman all these are part of the story some interesting .

“Bromance ” is much touted buzz word these days, somehow media does not seem to think women are capable of this kind of bonding, so many be I am one of the lucky ones… when I came down to Manipal I was the intruder, the rest of them were either born there or were definitely there before me,

My first day at the children’s play park, I was really different, I spoke pidgin, not English, and that was delivered with Tamil accent. I remember every one laughing at me, until.. one pretty girl with deep blue tights a white sleeveless top that small primroses of light and dark blue looked up, she gave me a 1000 watt mega smile, walked right up to me and asked me my name, the next thing she did has me in tears since then, ”I will be your friend” it is 46yrs now, and 20 yrs since we have lost connect, but each day, I think of her, and a prayer to her is definitely on my routine.

I remember playing in the sandpit, with our toys, be sun or rains, then as we grew up, we rode our bicycles, we went to movies and one movie was “Hattari” about the African hunt so the next month we pretended that our cycles were horses, and we lassoed pigs, and chicken that wandered into our campus screaming Hattari until someone’s mother caught us and then well lets not talk off painful events.

Finding out which mother would be out, so that we could experiment cooking, baking, make up it was all part of the growing up. When I look book we had great milestones in the journey of friendships,

Friendships grew and I do know of best friends drifting apart, and finally to quote Agatha Christie they cannot go beyond, “oh! Do you remember” stage if they meet after a decade.

Fortunately for me, my friends grew with me, we probably have the same likes, dislikes, so from hating Premalatha teacher we grew into cycling, swimming climbing trees and generally harassing our teachers in the middle school that was also the time we discovered the pleasures of cooking, and no pleasures of the whacking we got for creating kitchen disasters.

Despite of choosing various professions, the time when people tend to drift, we still stay bonded, though our conversations developed from kitchen disasters to disasters of the romantic kinds, in a while, boss became the pivot of crush either of the romantic kind or want to crush his head kind. From Pregnancy being an inconceivable  state we discussed pregnancy, picaphagia and appreciate our evaluation to the status of a referee when the second child came along.

Then came marriage, mother-in-law, her son the bonding now became strongers since friends are only safe net. When my BFF from Manipal moved to states, I was lucky in finding one in Goa, who is there for me through thick and thin, and yes, sick and sin… of course she does tell me that “Buddy in my precinct this is sin, but you make the rules in yours.”

Kids are grown, it’s the empty nest, our conversations now are arthritis, retirement, old age homes and “do you remember?”lace

I am lucky, I have had friends who refused to walk in front of me, for they didn’t want me to follow them, neither did they walk behind me, lest that I lead them, they always walk beside me, through thick and thin, sick and sin.

Just sharing a clipping of my oldest BFF Dr.Jyotsna Mirlay.

This has been written for  http://www.ozee.com/shows/yaaron-ki-baraat.

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