“En meedhu anbu kolla, ennodu serndhu sella…”
It was the time of our final ChemE lab exams in the third year of college. Waiting outside the lab with a crowd of classmates and hopelessly reviewing formulae and equations at the last minute, I suddenly felt my heart in my mouth. My fractional weight box!! I had somehow forgotten the all important little gray box. Each of us was supposed to bring it into the exam to measure quantities accurately to the tiniest fraction. I looked hopefully to my best friend, H, to share her weight box with me. If there was ever a more “by-the-rule-book” person than yours truly, it had to be H. She shook her head apologetically to say that she really couldn’t. What if the teachers saw us talking during the exam?!
I walked into the lab with feelings of doom and gloom. As we went to our assigned spots and started reviewing the questions, I saw someone place the precious gray box on the table beside me. I looked up to see N standing there with a reassuring smile. “Take it”, he said, “I will figure something out”.
He was just a friend back then. And it’s been almost 20 years since. But somehow that little incident has stayed with me. And, as we approach our 14th anniversary in a couple of weeks, I can say that indeed, that incident is very typical of N as a person and truly representative of our relationship over these years.
Who knew that the little weights would carry so much weight? 🙂