Yesterday, among the usual constant barrage of thoughts and images that cross my mind, a brief thought about an old friend suddenly appeared. And it rekindled some old memories. I decided to make contact again with that friend from my college way way way back in India. He has been a friend for almost 24 years now and we have maintained contact throughout although off late it had been quite sporadic. I was glad that the email address still worked and he responded. I am glad that contact has been reestablished.

All this sent me once again on nostalgic trip back to my college years all the way back to mid-eighties, to Trichy, India. Ah! Those lovely years! Truly unforgettable! I always thought so – nay in fact was sure of it. But …

Lately, I have noticed with some trepidation that I cannot remember some of the basic details of those years. These are details that I used to be able easily recollect before. Even as recent as a few years ago, I used to be able to reel out the names of all my hostel (dorm in US lingo) wing mates (20 of them) in order of the rooms they stayed in. I could remember at least five guys in pretty much every wing in the two hostels of my batch.

But I can’t anymore. I can remember many of the guys in my wing, but not all. The room order – details now appear hazy and haphazard. These were guys I spent the best years of my life with. And now I can recollect neither the names nor the faces of some of them! About guys in other wings – my memory is even fainter. In fact, I remember that a couple months ago, it took me a few of minutes before I could even remember the names of all the hostels in my college!

There is no question. Memories of one the best times of my life is starting to fade.

It is just the beginning, but it is a perturbing beginning. Not to be alarmed too much as I am pretty sure I am not suffering from any medical problem leading to unusual memory loss (I hope ;-)). I believe it is just a natural process orchestrated by something. And that something is Time.

Tick Tock, Tick Tock, Tick Tock …

So marches Time to ad infinitum. Like a faceless army – emotionless, merciless, relentless, all-consuming, pillaging villages of precious memories of our past.

Crash … Crash … Crash

So crash the never-ending waves of Time. Against the rocky beach of life, slowly but surely eroding away the sand castles of our past.

Creep … Creep … Creep

Creeps Time slowly but surely. Like the desert towards a rich city of our memories – full of colour.

Time Heals they say, but they really mean that Time erodes. Time erodes everything – the bad, the ugly, and even the good.

As I was writing this, I thought that it would be nice if I just had the ability to to come up with a nice poem. But then I thought, why bother when my favorite band Pink Floyd has said it best?

And you run, and you run to catch up with the sun, but its sinking

Racing around to come up behind you again

Sun is the same in a relative way, but you’re older

Shorter of breath, and one day closer to death.

This song is titled Time of course, and the above is just a portion of it that talks about the passing of one day of life. Dark and depressing isn’t it :-)? In typical Pink Floydian fashion. I don’t necessarily look at it this negatively, but I am impressed by the power in the lyrics. The entire song is quite powerful and has one of the best lyrics among Pink Floyd songs.

Okay, I realize that I am waxing poetic and unnecessarily sounding sensationalistic, and dark here. Blame it on a silly escapade at trying to be a writer – perhaps emboldened by blogging. But, this is sparked by the realization that even your fondest memories can fade – in Time.

I look at some of the things I used to do when I was young at college, and at times wish I could do them again. But it is like turning back along the path you came and finding that right behind you, across the road there is now a huge canyon, long and deep like the Grand Canyon. Your past is on the other side, and you are on this and there is no way across. There is a river rushing at the bottom, the river that has cut this canyon. That river is Time.

But I then snap out if saying to myself This is silly. You are older now, more wise, more mature. The tracks of Time are final – no point mulling over it. Besides Time isn’t the enemy. It is your attachment to transient things that is the real enemy. Always focus on enjoying what you have today – not what you had yesterday, or what you may have tomorrow. Don’t become possessive of your memories as they are an illusion. What happened was real. What you remember is just a creation of your mind.

Ok, maybe now I am waxing philosophical – and I need to wake up from this dream within a dream!