It happened early morning, 3.40 something. I had to go and drop Toby's motorbike. Before going, I asked Asif what he did. He mentioned Lawer, a criminal one. I was like, umm, nice.
I waved goodbye thanking him for the Tea he prepared. It was a good tea. We exchanged phone numbers—nice meeting you.
Subsequent time, I met Asif next to this pharmaceutical shop selling medicines, not that he was buying medications or something, a 24 by seven shop that sold ice-creams and packaged water. He was there with a bunch of Afghanistani's, and he was continually saying, "what the fucking fucking fucking fuck". Simran was also there.
We walked away, and I think he started appearing a bunch of times from thereon, and we started hanging out like for a few minutes, he would see me for Tea or see me over at his hostel.
The initial days, meeting him was not noticeable. He was light, talking in Hindi, which's unusual because I would rarely meet people communicating in Hindi; my brother spoke English. A couple of days later, he called me up and asked me if I could arrange some ganja. He said he does not smoke, but someone he likes that person smokes. I procured some stash, from Girish who survived on the streets, daily drinking and smoking and shouting at people. I was able to communicate with him.
The next day while walking out around late evening, I handed him the stash, and he said thanks. Simran was present there. She did some social pep talk. That day he mentioned he was in Paris a few months ago, and he started showing his bedroom and his passport photograph on his phone. I was in a different zone altogether, could not care more or less. Later it struck to Simran, a strange fellow he showed many photographs, but none were outside the room. She was a little suspicious. I confronted him, What kind of man you are? You have been to France, but you did not go out of your bedroom. That's weird.
That's the beginning of the Asif lying manufacturing factory. He likes to keep himself in such a state, nothing wrong, sober delusional state that took forever to get out of it, for both.
I did not care if he lied or not doing this is What I call this, Imitation game.
In this game, a player has no identity whatsoever. There is a profound loss of self-representation, no original thoughts, no background of the setting, and nothing to establish in the social fabric where one can point out or group him in a particular order. In this game, a player meets any character that exhibits a specific style like social connections, talking behavior, gestures, and vocabulary. Once the player establishes trust with that individual, the player starts learning all these behavior, thus providing this player a bridge. Essentially players look for these certain bridges/individuals that can help link the social connection. After some time, the player can exhibit a similar persona of that individual that acted as a bridge.
This definition seems to define what Asif was doing. He can come up with these stories that live off in his head. I have witnessed many.
Back to the strange loop where Sonal pulled us, Sonal is driving her car. I was looking at her legs, thinking of touching them and licking them.
I asked her, Don't you have someone to keep the company? She responded I am not looking for anyone. We both laughed. Asif did not get anything.
Nearby Koregaon Park, there is a bridge going down that had a small gap. From there, you could turn left; I would not do it. It's dangerous unless there is some urgency, but she took that turn since there was low traffic. I asked her, Do you value your life?. There is plenty of time, I told her. What if someone from the front crashed us? She said it hardly matters. She has to go home quickly. I got to know her more.
Risk-taking attitude, when you drive a car and take those risky turns, you exhibit a bit of aggression and quick judgment with narrow outcomes.
When we were in the car with Sonal, she asked us where she had to drop us. I told her I stay in Lane 6. After dropping Asif, He insisted, let's go to Viman Nagar. I told him, cannot go, have to rest. We took the bikes, parked them, and I asked Sonal if she can drop me. She said, yeah.
As soon as I sat in the car leaving Asif behind, First thing, she asked me How do you know Asif? First thing I get from everyone who recognizes us together. I told her I met him here. She suspected. For a moment, I deviated inside my mind. There is an alternate reality that does not exist here that there are a group of characters who stay secret with different roles, and their job is to go after and alter my brain.
I told her that I make software, learned it myself, worked here and there. She again suspected. I told her we know everything by ourselves. She was not quite ready for all this, I could see. She was hesitating to accept what I just said. She still thinks all science and education can only happen with specific certifications and acknowledgment or validation from those who have experienced it.
There existed a definite divide following in our conversation, and she was trying hard to navigate through this unknown compass she just got. She was driving around, trying to figure out about my methods and functions of life. I was repetitively taking her out all the time, Inside and outside. We kept playing all along. In the end, I told her better to talk about ourselves.
I explained to her something related to Bitcoin. The technology is fantastic. If you have not yet uncovered it, what does it do? It has a profound philosophical yet the practical impact on society as a whole. Bitcoin replaces our view of how the financial system works.
I finally asked her, what's your role, what are you doing to hide, like I am hiding underneath the identity of a programmer. She stated she gets this inner child inside-outside using universal signals, which dissipates energy and helps move. The last word I remember from her lips was, Energy healer and I thought reiki. That came to mind when Sonal mentioned alternative therapy.
When I realized that she could cure an inner child, I thought maybe, I should ask her, but later I realized she could not fix anything. She has traded herself in the form where she exchanges money to heal your inner child. The very essence of exchanging values for such work does not go anyplace. It is a very delicate process where one must be present and share techniques that work in an environment where the healer is ready to have your energy and deal with that. It's no longer about values, and it's more subtle. By the very model, you have just worked on the surface and did nothing, and this is what I think.
Can you heal someone? I think you cannot, and every healing is personal. You can share your voice, give comfort, provide help, and help others create an understanding framework. We are empty inside. This life is fundamentally meaningless, and we give it meaning—all information in life, stored in nucleotides.
She said goodbye, and we never talked for over a year. I would send her messages asking how she is doing? She would never respond or respond that she is busy. After a year, I tried getting in touch with her. I told her, I am in town, have this TEDx thing. She instantly responded, said she would call me in the evening, and we met for dinner.
An awkward moment, She asked me how did you do all of this? I was like, what do you mean? I am different, relatively calm from the last meeting to this meeting. Everything has changed, not smoking for the previous two years, playing the flute, and talking some sense, traveled a bit. She was surprised. She initially said to me that if I could have her for counseling, that's quite expensive. I told her we could meet as a friend.
We talked about many things till late at night, around 2. She said she needs a smoke, and I asked her you still smoke. She needs smoke because that's her break.
She pondered over the idea, and If I can teach her all the technical stuff, she needs to learn. She offered me some business proposition. In return, I said we could, but there should not be any boundary between our relationship. She objected and asked. What do you mean? I cannot define, I don't want to be your friend, which is another strange loop.
We can be anything. The future holds uncertainty. We planned, living together, sharing, and learning things from each other. But Sonal objected to my idea of no boundaries between us.
There was no conclusion; I was hard on her in the first instance, asking her to forget all boundaries. Somethings take time. Conditioning has engulfed all of us. I am looking for a partner, and she is looking for someone who can teach her. I felt a bit tired, and I asked her to drop me close to where I was putting up.
We continued talking over messages; her messages were clear boundaries or nothing. I said to her later morning, ok, acceptable limits. She has decided that she will not go ahead with all of that arrangement that we never concluded.
I felt bitter, and I wanted to know her, but I felt like she took all of my energy that night and returned nothing. I didn't want anything. However, I think there was some space we were holding, and after her puff, everything changed.
Later, after her meeting, I would talk to her sometimes. She would mention we are two different people, and we need to respect each other. That is why Asif is my friend, and she is not.
Sometimes, we talk about things over a phone call, and she is always busy with her counseling calls. Her opening line over healing messages is still about if you can afford my service and do something. I want friends, not someone who is willing to trade something and then create something artificial that has no resolve, no rooting.
Life goes on. I sent her a message wishing a happy new year, and there is a hymn of a train beating the track amidst rain over my eyes and making me feel alive more and more active when I remember all of those things. Therefore, I deem open and emitting light to everyone I face. I do not need her anymore.