20 July 2019

How come I did not know this?

“You remember Yogesh?”, she asked.
“Sholapurkar?”, I asked
“Yes. You have a great memory”

I kept staring at her. Something was not computing in my mid.

Well, let me start from the beginning. It was one of those birthday calls back in January. Jasmine was my classmate from our MBA days. She is in London now. She has mentioned that she would be visiting her brother in Princeton in June. I had asked her to let me know when she comes and I will put in my best effort to see her.

I knew of Jasmine as those smart-and-beautiful types in our class but we did not have more than a passing knowledge of each other. I have to admit I started questioning that “smart” part when in June she gave me some of her travel details and actually said she would like to get together with me to remember our MBA days.

Well, to make a hash of the long story… there I was – this morning knocking at her brother’s door. She came out and I have to admit we must have surprised each other with our hair styles. I remember Jasmine’s face from 1989 and the chrysanthemum that her hair served as a background. Well, it has mostly completely straightened out. (I wonder whether she does what Sharmila does too !!). And, of course, my hair split with me decades back.

Having introduced me to her nephews and daughter, she asked me that question about Yogesh.

Here is the thing – I know of only one Yogesh in my life. He joined my first company in Bombay a year after me. I was assigned to do some training of that whole new recruit group. I remembered him as a particularly smart recruit. And I knew he lives in UK now. My synapses must have done some quick connections about he being in UK and she being in UK and asked “Sholapurkar”?

What I could not get is how they know each other. More importantly, even if they had run into each other in UK, how did the topic of me coming up? None of them know me that well.

And now we are back at the moment when I was staring at her…

“You know he is my husband, right?”

HOLY MACRO!!! All these days, I had independent knowledge of both of them, talked about families and all that and never for once realized they are are married to each other!! Of course, that led to the discussion of many more common friends from either side.

It was great seeing you Jasmine after three decades. I loved your perspective on MBA classes and when one should go for MBA. I wish I had spent some more time with you during 1989-1991. Some of that wisdom might have rubbed off on me.

But above all, as I told you on the phone also, I will always remember you and respect you (and Yogesh – now that I know that he is your husband) for one thing above all… for adopting your daughter. As I explained to you – during my time with the cause of battered women and kids in Dallas, one thing I learnt was that there are more kids than caring parents. Anybody who subtracts one from that problem is top notch in my books.

I got a glimpse today of the long period you had to endure to get the adoption done – but Sara (spelling?) could not have waited for more perfect parents.

May you and Yogesh’s tribe increase!!

Posted July 20, 2019 by Rajib Roy in category "Intersection Points

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