It was Real
I think love also is a state of my mind. There are other factors too that makes love possible. But love is a personal thing we all agree. The other factors should not be given too much due. At least in the case of love.
She said that she had no feelings for me, that she considers me her older brother. We had this conversation when she was running a high fever (one hundred and six degree she had said the previous night). I am not sure how I feel about her. For a few hours watching a movie named Failan I thought I would love her as long as I lived. (The actress in the movie looked like her and they had the exact same black, shiny, long hair). And now I don't love her anymore---she has been ignoring my calls repeatedly. She told me that she cannot even begin to agree to the idea of me and her taking that path. But there was a moment when I could see myself standing on the beginning of a sure road to closeness, happiness and mutual love. Now she is as distant to me as some South Korean actress I watch on screen.
That day I had been walking around the suburbs of Gurgaon with my friend Arjun. We had been to a Dunkin Donut, had entered a shoping mall, had sat on a plaza discussing the kinds of love that happens between a boy and a girl. We had even boarded the metro to go to Cyber City. And there in Cyber City, sitting on some futuristic seats in a lawn, I had the conversation. (When I asked Arjun if I should dial her number he said yes). The phone rang on the other side of the connection for a long time. And just before the ring disappeared she picked up the call. And I talked to her very casually and joyfully. (I did not know jow to talk to her and what to talk to her so I took on the role of the casual and jolly character).
I asked her how she was feeling now and whether she was keeping herself warm and rested. And somewhere in between I told her that she was beautiful and I liked her. In reply she said that it was not possible. She had come out of a break-up only a few months ago and that she still loved him. I said "casually and joyfully" that she can still love him---she only needs to love me a little. Her honesty brought me into an instant awareness of my inadequacy in bringing her the kind of comfort and happiness she deserved---you know the kind of love she had received from her ex-boyfriend. And in a somewhat perverted manner, this gave me a sense of achievement in talking to her. The fact that I could not ever be good like her ex-boyfriend gave me a sense of pride in talking with her. I was thinking: here was someone who has been truly in love and I am having the good fortune of talking to her--even being a potential boyfriend. And the conversation petered out---it was obvious we were not in the same frequency of thought and feeling. ('What should I talk about? C'mon man help me out here,' I whispered at Arjun from the side, Should I hang up now?' 'Just don't hang up, keep saying something,' Arjun adviced me.) And she said, "Ok then, I am disconnecting now."
"Ok," I said, and just kept the phone hanging.
But she did not hang up the phone.
"So you off it now," she said after a long time.
But I kept the connection hanging in the air.
And finally after two minutes the line went dead. She did press the disconnect button at the end.
'Well you are a loser,' I told myself in my head, still trying to keep up the casual and joyful act, 'At least you were honest.'
I turned to Arjun and smiled, "She disconnected it."
Suddenly the phone rang again. It was her again on the screen! She had called me back. My heart made a leap of joy---I could hardly believe it.
"HI IPLIHS!," I said with enthusiasm.
"Sorry the phone got disconnected. It was not me. I think there was a network problem from my side."
"OK," I said, "No problem."
"So we can be friends then," she said.
"Yes, we can be friends," I said.
"You there?" she said after the long pause in the conversation.
"YEAH I AM THERE!"
"Ok then. Can I keep the phone now?"
"Ok. Bye," she said.
And the phone went dead.
"Wow! She called me back!" I grinned at Arjun.
When the phone rang again and I talked to her I was in love with her. I could see her in my life and we falling in love and spending our middle-age and old-age together.
And the truth is that, every time I look back to that moment, (forgetting everything that happened after that incident---all the stupid things that I did in order to build some connection with het---if I forget all that and just re-live in my mind just the way it was that moment when the phone rang again I can say that it was real. Even though I know now that it never will be. In that moment it was real love and it will always be.