I am participating in the 30 Days Letter Challenge where you write one letter each day. The second in the list is a letter to ‘Your Crush’
Did you know you adorned my cupboard doors almost 40 years back? No kidding. You did. Much to the chagrin of the nun who was the warden in charge of our floor of the hostel. The spoilsport that she was, she had me take off your pictures when she walked in to inspect the rooms one day. But I was not to be put down that easily. I had the pictures back on the cupboard doors, and this time I made sure they were on the inside. I only had to leave the doors open whenever I wanted to see you and have my one-sided conversations with you, something like, ‘Hey Crush, I gotta write this stupid essay on blah blah blah you know’ or ‘Crush-ho! Be back after a bath. Miss me while I am gone!’ or ‘Hey, do you know where my red top has disappeared?’
Sigh, I am sure all this is not much compared to what your die-hard fans were prepared to do for you. But guess what, I can bet my bottom rupee that no one would have offered you Bournvita or become the laughing stock of the whole hostel for doing that. You want me to explain?
I had gotten pretty weak owing to indiscriminate dieting (read eating very less food to slim down) and the tasteless hostel food. Fifteen is an awful age and you so want to impress your peers. A glass of Bournvita was the solution that was thrust on me to get me out of the rut I had forced myself into. So I’d get hot water from the mess in the basement, get back to my room on the 3rd floor and faithfully make my glass of Bournvita with milk powder, sugar and duh, spoonfuls of Bournvita.
One day, my classmate Sandra, who stayed in the room at the end of the corridor came over to discuss some homework. Or may be it had been to borrow a book. Sandra is this slim girl, all naughty-eyed and cheerful, with two untidily made plaits hanging on to her shoulders from either side of her face. She walked in while I was about to make my Bournvita. Being polite I asked her if she would have a cup too. She declined and so I made one for myself while we talked of this and that in a desultory fashion. Suddenly remembering, I turned towards the open cupboard doors and asked you,
‘Hey Crush! Sorry, I forgot. Will you have Bournvita? No?! Alright!’
I then proceeded to calmly drink from my cup. Sandra meanwhile was standing with mouth agape. Then she burst out laughing and ran out of the room. Well dear Crush, need I tell you what followed? The whole floor heard of it, and eventually all floors. Sandra could not stop laughing on seeing me for days after the incident. But do you think I minded? Not at all. I laughed with them all.
Dear Crush, you are no longer the Angry Young Man fighting against injustice, but a much older man (though still fighting injustice and also doing a host of other things like falling in love with your daughter’s friend) Old age suits you, incredibly so. In fact I have an even more massive crush on this older, debonair version of you. The present crop is no match for your suave self. The closest I come to transferring a portion of the crush I have on you is on to your son. A chip off the old block and any day better than the One Who Hams or the Shirtless One. His day will come, you just wait.
In the meantime, can I interest you in a cup of Bournvita? 😉
The Crushed by Crush. ❤
©Shail Mohan 2014