Today, I am in an uneasy frame of mind. While parting is difficult, departing is more difficult.
The first is about my home in Abu Dhabi. It was my home away from home and I had been living in that flat for about 14 years now. My house and the neighbourhood were dear to me.
The building was old with limited facilities and age took its toll. It was declared uninhabitable by the municipality. All the tenants had to look for accommodation elsewhere.
They say, a change is an opportunity. I parted with many old items that I had earlier thought I couldn’t live without. It was a difficult choice to select and pack what I wanted and what I didn’t.
Finally, I moved in to a new place. I am confident I will soon blend in here.
The second one is about a college mate. During our college days we were actively involved in literary and cultural activities, as well as student welfare issues. After graduation, we didn’t know whether our paths would meet again.
I regularly contributed to community issues through reports in local dailies. As I followed the news with keen interest, I noticed a familiar name appearing in the same columns.
Recognising the identity of the person, I gathered his address and contacted him.
It was none other than my college mate whom I thought I would never meet again.
We travelled almost the same path with regards to community issues. Many of our suggestions helped the administrative authorities rectify issues identified without delays.
A few years ago he confided in me about being diagnosed with cancer.
A man of strong will, he did not discuss much about it. He kept himself cheerful and participated in activities of the India Social and Cultural Center and other associations.
Last week, I came to know that he was in the ICU struggling for his life. It was difficult to meet him at the ward in his partially conscious state.
It has been almost a week now and he remains in the same critical condition. We keep hoping that he will recover and return to his normal self.
Treatment for cancer is very expensive and it is high time authorities in all countries came out with subsidised treatment for cancer patients.
Gulf Today, Short Take – 12 July 2014
To read it in original, please visit Gulf Today online.