Who is your lobster?

Who is your lobster? Who is your soul-mate?

I don’t believe in soul-mates, although I do like the idea of it. I loved the movie Serendipity for that.

I discovered a rupee note, signed  on both sides, carefully preserved inside my old purse and carefully stored in my petti (trunk)…..
onerupee_front onerupee_back

“with lots of love” didn’t really throw me off. It was the spelling “Preamlatha” that shaked me. 1.1.89 brought a smile on my face.

DSCN4145(Jan 2007, Kombai, India) I opened my petti with all excitement. The mood contagiously spreaded across the whole house, only with differences in degrees and reasons behind it. Balan was excited alright, but it was Senthil who was as excited as I was.. After all, they were all his letters, written by him.  It turned the time machine by a few years (about 20+ years) back for us. I opened one of the several purses stored in the petti. (I still haven’t figured out the reason for keeping those purses so safe in my petti). I smiled to see a rupee note in that purse and took it out. Everyone in that room (except Balan, Senthil, Sujatha and I ofcourse) said, “sellum sellum sellum” (the money is still in circulation or can be used.. that kind of meaning). I was taken by surprise to see something written on the note, and again to my surprise on both sides. The group (my family members gang) started saying “one should kill the guy who designed these notes with spaces. This is what ruins people’s lives”, as they were so worried that my husband has seen it.. I ignored those comments, preserved it for another time for a good laugh. Senthil asked me to move to a different place so that I could have some privacy, “privacy” in his terms, included him, Balan, and Sujatha as part of me!

The name looked “Arul”, but I couldn’t recollect anyone named Arul who would do a silly gesture of signing on a rupee note and I couldn’t believe that I was involved in such an act myself!. The words were, “With Lots of love   Arul” on one side and “Preamlatha 1.1.89” on the other side. Then I thought that it could have been some kind of silly joke or a bet between this Arul guy and I. I still don’t think that it could have been anything serious than that. Nobody could have made me accept a rupee note with a silly signature on it, let alone wording it “lots of love”. The very fact that I had preserved it made me curious. Then I realised the spelling “PreAmlatha”. There was only one person on this earth who addressed me with that kind of spelling (It was not Balan, btw). There were few letters from him preserved in that petti too. I looked at his handwriting, though I haven’t forgotten those squarly perfectly written letters that formed those sentences of straight lines.. Still compared the letter with the rupee note for handwriting matching.  Nope. Too different. His name was no where near “Arul” either.

I was in college During 1988-1989. So, it must have been someone from my class, as I did not move with boys from other batches (except one) or from other disciplines. There was only one guy in my class whose name started with “Arul”… So I said, “It must have been Arulmozhi”… Senthil said “I am so sorry, am so sorry”, as Arul is no more…. He was murdered by his business partner which I came to know a few years later his death. He was not married.

Arulmozhi and I used to argue with each other for hours and hours on “intellectual issues”. During those arguments he used to provoke me so badly. He enjoyed seeing me angry and fighting back vigorously. I never had a mushy mushy sort of relationship with him. 

His usage of spelling was what really shaked me, as “pream” (correctly spelt Priyam) means love in Tamil (although prem also means love, none of us knew that, as we were Sanskrit- illiterates. Premam would have given us some clue, but prem didn’t). The deliberate misspelling of my name to have “pream” in it was used and explained to me by that other guy, but  never had a clue Arul used it too. It must have been just this rupee note signature (or bet) time that he used it, I might have missed to notice, kept it inside my purse without even looking at it…. I guess. I have no memory of such a signature incident. No any memory of any incident on that new year day (or night?) of 89. I have a blurry memory of funs we had, but nothing specifically about any new year night, 89 or otherwise. It is highly likely that it was the new year night, 12am exactly, as we did go out with boys late nights, certainly I might not have missed the new year night craziness.. Yes, there were rules in girls’ hostel, but who cared!

There were rumours/stories about him having crush on another girl. But, hey, there were stories and stories for every girl and boy in all sorts of combinations. So…hmmm… Never thought he could have had any feelings for me. I still don’t believe 100% that it was him and/or he had feelings for me.

It is so sad that I cannot verify now.

Whosoever this Arul guy is/was… whether it was a simple bet or a joke or a serious message to me…. I am sorry if you had thought of me as your lobster or your soul-mate, I didn’t think of you in similar terms, I don’t have one as I don’t believe in one. I do have my safety blanket or my comfort blanket as I put it; it is Balan. For me, it comes after a few years of living a life together. I am just used to him and cannot imagine a life without him. I guess it can be said that he is my lobster.

PS: For those who do not know,

Balan was my best friend during my college days. Arul, Balan and I, we were all in the same “gang”. Probably Balan knew Arul better than I did.

Senthil is my brother and he moved in my “gang” too. So he knew Arul (and Balan) well too.

Sujatha was the only one sitting there clueless ..