Guess it was the month of June, when I returned from my gran’s place after a short vacation celebrating the end of my Class 12 board examinations. I simply couldn’t bear the pain caused by my dad who had created a Facebook account before me!! We had moved to a different part of the country after my Class 10 board exams, so creating a Facebook account was a good way to keep in touch with all the good souls whose phone numbers I forgot to procure. (This is almost 7 years ago, so back then smartphones weren’t much popular in our circles)
My mom always believed that having a Facebook account was a ‘SIN’. She always refrained me from staying out of it for my well-being. I had grown tired of mailing and calling my friends back in my previous school. The most common question I was subjected to was,’ Why aren’t you on Facebook?’
For I was about to start my college in few weeks and I felt almost illiterate, whenever I blurted out the truth that I was not a Facebook-er. So this was the end!!
Exactly the night, after my dad’s arrival on Facebook, I was creating an account for myself, and the world of Mark Zuckerberg welcomed me!! It looked awesometastic!!!
Now I had to search my friends and send then ‘Friend Requests’ to have further fun on this social networking site. Like a flash all the names were moving in my mind but the first name that struck me was of a guy who shared a seat with me throughout Class 6. We were three musketeers who shared a seat those days. He was a very special one to me, as we were the invincible THREE who had immeasurable fun that year. We had equal SHARE in everything be it punishments (the wrath of our Hindi Mam was the worst) or occupying the same space on the desk, the maths we had for food (1 parantha == 2 idlis) and eating it up in the first hour itself, the class test answers of course 😉 (He used to help in Maths, me in English and Social Studies and the other one in Hindi and Punjabi). They introduced me to the new genre of Cricket and Cars. There were many memorable moments we had spent together that year. They too were among the good souls whose phone numbers I didn’t have as we were in different sections later.
His pic appeared the moment I typed his name (though he had put on considerable weight in his dp), and I sent him my first friend request and a second later a notification appeared that my request was accepted by him. Another second later a message came popping up in my desktop screen.
‘Hello Madam, finally you are on fb’, my first Facebook friend had just sent me my first Facebook message. The second musketeer also accepted my request in a few minutes and we had a good conversation that night after 6 years. The former was an amateur cricketer during school. We had relied heavy hopes on him, that he would surely become a world-class cricketer. To everyone’s surprise he proved his mettle by getting into an IIT, a reward he received for sacrificing two years of cricket.
Our chats were limited after the beginning of college days. Occasionally, we would find time to chat on Facebook. He got into his IIT’s cricket team and was on tour ever since then. One night in June 2015 we started a conversation at 8 PM and wrapped it up at 1 AM. Guess it was my longest record of chat. I had mentioned him in one of my blogs and he was delighted to read it. Even our shortest chats always ended in brutal trolls. Friendship was at its peak with him.
A few months later in October, I was reading newspaper when my eye caught an article with the title, “2 IITians drowned in beach.” My eyes glanced into the article to read further. The IIT mentioned in the title was the same one in which he was studying. I prayed hard that it shouldn’t be his name. For the probability was minimal that it would be him. In the first line I saw the words ‘aerospace engineering’ and ‘final year’. Both matched perfectly for him. Again I convinced myself that it wouldn’t be him. But the next line gave me the biggest shock of my life. I saw his name 😥 he had drowned the day before. My heart skipped a beat for the first time. I checked Facebook for any news about him. But it was only the next day that newspaper clippings carrying his photo were posted in our school alumni group and everyone was expressing their condolences. The remorse feeling never left me.
A day doesn’t pass by, without his memory popping into my head. For I had lost my best-est friend forever. The second musketeer felt the same too, he told me on my birthday. For my timeline was missing his birthday wish. No more long Facebook chats now. No more trolling. All that’s left of him is a Facebook timeline carrying a ‘Remembering’ header before his name.