My Friend Veenu!
As we travel through this journey called life, we cross paths with several co-passengers, if you will, along the way. Some, we travel with for long periods of time and then there are those with whom our paths cross ever so briefly and yet they manage to leave a mark that’s profound and unforgettable.
One such person or co-passenger had crossed my path in my youth for a very brief time. And although it’s been over a decade since his untimely demise, I have never forgotten our friendship and the bond we shared. But, what I have forgotten are the reasons behind our wonderful friendship, the finer nuances of his personality, the anecdotes of which there were many at one point.
Ever since I started writing as a hobby about 3 years ago, I have spent a lot of time thinking about a way to memorialize our friendship in words, but unfortunately I just don’t have the material to keep it genuine and heart-felt, the only way I would want it. I guess, memory much like everything else these days, comes and goes very conveniently.
And, with that lesson learnt, I have vowed that precious memories from now on will have to be immortalized in a word document and safely backed-up on a portable hard drive. The god-given, good ol’ memory will just not cut it……too many bugs in that application.
So without further ado, let me introduce you to my friend Veenu. I have known her for roughly five or six years and only recently became close to her. But even before I started calling her my friend, I always admired her as a woman. She is beautiful, but not just the kind that runs only skin deep. She is beautiful in the sense that she lights up the room just with her personality. She is loud, vivacious and full of life. And yet, genuine, personable and down-to-earth. She is so multi-faceted and yet so simple.
She is the most graceful, feminine, expressive dancer I know, who can also break into punk-rock bhangra at a moment’s notice. There is never a party or an event without dancing when she’s around. And boy, try keeping up with her!! She is like the energizer bunny that keeps going on and on..
She is fashion forward and a sight for sore eyes when she cleans-up for a girls’ night on the town, but if you mention it, she’ll unpretentiously give you a run-down on the bargain finds she mixed and matched for her ensemble. She’s pretty resourceful too, ask any of my girlfriends, who have gotten a quick eye-brow shaped or threading done on the passenger seat of her car.
And, does she sing?? For someone with no formal training at all, she sings with so much passion, it’s hard to take your eyes or ears off her when she gets hold of the microphone. I have heard her sing your everyday bollywood hits, ghazals, qawallis and even some soft rock with all accents removed. One of her most touching performances was the Amy Grant’s “Groovy kind of love” dedicated to her daughter on her 4th birthday. But wait, there’s more, she is also a lead singer of a devotional band at her temple and tours with them for several causes.
She has judged beauty pagents, emceed cultural events, participated in singing competitions and performed at community events. She also delights us with performances at our baby showers and other private events. There is never a dull moment with her around.
Her house like her personality is a blend of contemporary with earthen tones, her walls adorned with her own art work. Yeah, you read it right, she is an artist too. Her kitchen has aromas of Punjabi cuisine…she is known to whip up delicious aloo paranthas at a moments notice when we show up unannounced.
She is the one who got us into what has now become a sacred routine for us, our girls’ nights out. With her, there was never a shortage of ideas, we tried new restaurants in the Buckhead area, tried clubbing at Salsa bars and even went to a Hookah bar. She doesn’t say NO to much. Her sense of adventure is contagious. And yet, she’s so grounded in her family values. She’s a great wife, an awesome mother, a loving daughter, a true friend, a real Punjabi cook, a home maker, an architect, a realtor, a project management professional and above all a true woman of substance.
If I keep going on, I am afraid I’ll come off sounding like I have a crush on her. So, I’ll end my blog with a simple “I miss you, Veenu!”
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