It was 5:30pm when I found myself under the shower of cold water. I was out and dressed up, all ready for the most unexpected and unique day of my life, reunion of 16 year old, 17 year old, 20 year old myself.
Went to the dining table where all the arrangements are ready with four seats there. I sat on one and others in appropriate places. Left of me is the 16. He dragged the chair,clanged the plates and did a lot of noise in serving himself some chicken from the bowl. The 17 seated himself quite decently and served himself in silence, in my opposite. The 20 had been on my right. He sat there in a decent fashion, with a smile and greeted everyone there before he levied his eyes upon the feast.
The grand party started with a white rum glass on my right, with a plate of heavy meals on my left and a man opposite to me thinking deeply and having a little of his meal. The 20 started talking with a firm voice after taking a sip of white rum in his royal fashion, "So, nice to meet you all. Interestingly, we never met so far but we are at a reunion table."
The 16 slurping the chicken, "I don't even know any of you, but you all know me very well. In fact, you all are my ascent fruits."
17 raised his hand, "Haha, you had a forbidden fruit before growing up?"
16: Yeah. The fruit of knowledge from the school, resulted on a little piece of paper, 3 digits bold and highlighted.
20: That's a great way of putting the most useless part of your life.
17: I almost arrested myself as they said, "work hard for 2 years, enjoy the rest."
20: Ah, there there! That's the statement I've been hearing all my life so far. But I never know how much brighter can the sun be.
17: I was living in moonlight!
16: Was I living in candle light?
Me: It's actually our choice. You did quite good.
20: After all, I didn't live just for a 2 page resume.
Me: Yea, you certainly didn't.
20: Rather, I was more into other stuff
raising his rum glass with a grin on his face
Me: Great memories of your life, great friends, great experiences and a lot are left. I must say, you made a lot of me. Your each and every experience helped me a lot.
16: I wonder still my love to Back Street Boys and Aqua are persistent with you.
20: I think I lost my age mostly by Imagining Dragons under the porcupine tree, with Floyd. Toasted his glass of alcohol
17: There were no songs in my life..oh, wait, FM! I must specify that bloody bastards of my hostel used to play really irritating songs in very high volume, early in the morning..To wake us up..
Me: Haha! To put it up simply, somewhere between Backstreet boys and Pink Floyd, we grew up.
16: I think Aqua and MJ comes even before that.
17: My goodness, you certainly helped me growing up. Your love to Aqua tells it all.
16: I was a socially awkward person, though.
20. Dear, none are socially awkward but society is personally awkward.
Heavy laughter followed
16: Are we done with dinner? I want some prawns, deep fried.
The 20 signaled to waiter
20: Deep fry prawns for two, a nib of Baccardi and turning towards others anything else?
17: Nothing for me.
I was silent and the waiter left
17: What makes you drink so much? I didn't even dream of me drinking when I get older. Does it help you celebrate?
Me: You don't need alcohol to celebrate. But, your celebration might include alcohol.
20: I don't have an obsession to drink, but it's special. Every time I ask myself, who is your best friend, a shadow casts around me. Today, there are 3 shadows.
16: Or you might just call us pillars.
20: Oh honey! Let's say you start walking early in the morning, when sun is about to shine and you can see your shadow behind you. As the day progresses, your shadow comes to your feet and end of the day, it's ahead of you and disappears.
Me: So, we spend half the life running away from our shadow and half the life running behind it.
17: And once it's lost, you keep on searching for it, instead of starting a new life again.
16: You grown ups are interestingly ass-holes!
A good laughter followed, heavily from 20
20 (speaking indistinctly with laughter): I must agree to that, no matter what aspect we're talking of.
16: Is it just a general human growth cycle? Or it's specific to us? I'm still not yet sure to call all of us as me, or us.
17: It's common. People grow up playing with the dolls, watching cartoons and eventually playing with the lives, watching people. And they consider as grown ups.No much difference, though.
Me: Yes. Kids like Jerry a lot in Tom and Jerry. Adults pity Tom and think Jerry is the culprit. Kids see a life, adults see a meal in Jerry.
16: I just hope it's true with future kids too.
20: Might not be. They grow up faster. They're obsessed with Game of thrones instead of Tom And Jerry.
17: Excuse me, why are we talking about all that alien stuff in a reunion party?
A great smile on everyone's face
Silence took over the moment with everyone almost finishing up and washing our hands. Looking at the way we washed our hands, I must admit that 16 was followed better hygiene. While I was quietly observing the way I grow up, visually, the waiter cleaned the table.
I was expecting the bill and there he presented a cake with a message of birthday wishes to me. It had 4 flavours, each filling a quarter of the cake.
I was blowing off the single candle, as if I was born only a year ago, while others are greeting me wishes with a smile and happiness that none other than me can see. The joy of being grown up is bright on their faces. As I cut the cake, they choose to take the piece of cake from the flavour they most liked, leaving my favourite butterscotch nuts for me. I realized I can celebrate the best with myself and make my own choices.
As we departed, child in me rose up and started to live with me, the grown up. And as I leave the place, the shadow is lost in the darkness again. No more running behind it, the child in me urges me to start it, again. The child in me never dies as I grow up.
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