Apples from Amsterdam

| 1.5 MINUTE READ | Our friendships are sometimes older than us

I was on a one-day work trip to Amsterdam. I messaged her to check if she was free that evening. She had guests home for dinner and I was welcome to join them.

The last time I saw her was almost three decades ago. She was thirty then. Me in my early twenties. In the nineties, there was a slowness in how we arrived into friendships. I first met her at the home of a friend, whose elder brother was working with her on a film. It was another dinner. She wore a crisp sari. Her eyes were luminescent. They watched, waited and listened. There were a few more such meetings.

After that we serendipitously ran into each other on a few occasions. The last time was on the platform of the Hazrat Nizamuddin railway station in Delhi. I took her landline number and called her occasionally. Until at some point, we became friends. When I felt vulnerable, I would speak to her. Get enveloped by her empathetic voice.

She got married, moved countries and we lost touch. Two years ago, I got her number and reconnected briefly. Resurrecting what had become a mythical friendship.

She remembered I was vegetarian and made pumpkin soup. The fresh bread was delicious. After dinner, I pocketed a gleaming red apple. She plucked another from her garden for me. It had a few rotten patches that she carved out before wrapping it. I had it for breakfast the next morning. It was my first taste of a freshly plucked apple. Sharp and tangy.

Seeing her again filled me with an inexplicable joy. At the airport, I received a message from her, thanking me for my abiding affection. I have no explanation for where it arises from.

There is something mystical in how warmth is preserved over such long periods of time towards people we have little contact with. Like a deep karmic bond from another life. That we briefly brush against in this one.

The mystery of the heart is that the love within it is so much older than we are.

38 thoughts on “Apples from Amsterdam

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  1. I think sometimes we get to touch something wonderful Ananda. A very smooth, as in unconditional, that we all touch but this life ruffles the connection somewhat. I too have ‘connected’ with such a one…talked so easily, never an argument, not even a ripple in that joined pond. It was so perfect that it didn’t need to be a relationship, it already was. And yes, go on to be married to others and not care…in fact be very happy for them. Maybe its an experience of what can be, that song in the universe we try to imitate, and just occasionally a note comes along so we smile…really smile. Great share kind sir, a touch of a lovely memory for me also, thank you β€οΈπŸ™πŸ½

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    1. Now that was such a message from you Ananda, and to make it such a synchronicity that I dreamed of her last night. I haven’t seen her for some time, maybe like you, another meeting is in the winds of time πŸ€£β€οΈπŸ™πŸ½

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  2. Able to relate to this totally. We don’t need answers for such things. Consider ourselves blessed for having friends with whom we can connect well after a long time.

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  3. For a chemical reaction to take place, the physical proximity and mixing of the reactants plus a certain amount of continuous stirring are essential…as we know in science labs! Once the reaction is complete – the original products disappear and a new product emerges – that stays on so later for long!

    In human relationships – physical contact may trigger a “Psycho-chemical” reaction that creates its own end products. Occasionally the end product will be a “psychochemical-bond” – a special kind of bond that overcomes the limitations of “space-time” coordinates. This phenomenon can happen only at young (nascent) age! This is not uncommon…!!!

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  4. Indeed, connections persist and transform over several lifetimes. How else can we justify the significance of certain bonds not dictated by blood or time. I’ve felt this too and it can be surreal and uncanny. As if trying to place a memory in a time and place that doesn’t belong to this life. But there’s an energy that beckons one to act or react in unexplainable ways. Even a few meetings and conversations may carry the emotional weight that can’t be found in years together. Thank you for sharing this, Anand. πŸ™‚

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  5. Very interesting and lovely story about how people are brought together and become close. Sometimes we become close faster than we like but it still happens. This was a lovely story filled with hope. Blessings, hug Joni

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  6. Really amazing writing with expressions. Its 1.5 minutes reading but has tons of interpretations / expression of spiritual relations. Lovely writing – keep writing!!!!

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  7. An open heart can see that. You are such a one.
    Happy Diwali to you as well. I had the pleasure to attend a celebration of it while living in Bahrain. I am grateful.

    The beauty of light. It has been a pleasure to meet you as well.
    K.

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  8. Thank you for this beautiful unraveling and insight. Those relationships that touch us deeply in the past and stay buoyant despite the years are precious. Soul to soul connection in this life … and possibly many more.
    Beautiful πŸ™πŸ’πŸ’

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  9. I can connect myself with this. Teasingly simple and small 1.5 minute narrative. Pining for longer 3 minute reads

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  10. Lovely. Good friendships are indeed such…even when we connect after eons, it just feels like we are picking up the threads from where we left the previous time, without missing a stitch!

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  11. That’s a comforting thought to realize that there are those who retain fond memories of us from those earlier days. I like the apple reference as fitting to the story. Mine would most likely be an orange.

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