Just then I received a call. I was so freaking excited. I picked it on the first ring.
“Hello… Karthik, is that you? Have you reached the station? Where are you? Where should I pick you up…?” I kept going
“Hello…Wwaait…Will you please let me say something?”
“I am sorry, Who is this?”
“Hi Praveen, This is Varun, a friend of Karthik’s. He couldn’t make it to the reunion due to unavoidable circumstances. However, he asked me to deliver a letter to you. Where should I find you?”
It was sheer disappointment for me “I am standing near the Main Hall entrance.” I sounded rather despondent.
“Okay. I’ll come” He hung up.
I received the letter from Varun. The letter had Karthik’s beautiful handwriting. It read.
I was so delighted to receive your letter. My heart jumped out with joy, Happiness knew no bounds. I knew that you would find me some day or the other no matter how far I stayed way from the world.
I always wanted to pursue a career in teaching. Richard Sir was my role model and my inspiration. You knew that better than anyone else but, the world saw it the the other way round. People thought I had ruined my life by not opting to attend interviews for MNCs which recruited software engineers. I was looked down upon. I just couldn’t convince them that I didn’t want to follow the herd. What hurt me the most was even people who had a strong desire and a passion towards this profession were fast giving up. They were being lured by fat salaries other jobs offered. It was so easy for them to give up their passion for materialistic gains. A career in teaching isn’t a lucrative one, that’s what they had to say. I feared being a victim of circumstances, changing world and changing people. I shut myself down from the world. In the process I lost touch with a true friend.
Anyways I am doing good now. Amidst all the hardships I’ve made it through. The dream has come true. You’d be psyched to know that I work as a lecturer in a college now. I enjoy working here. I have all kinds of students in my classes – Curious, Gifted, The special needs, Notorious, Arrogant, Humorous, Aspiring ones, Bookworms… Each day with them is a learning experience for me. Its a challenge too.
My dear friend, You’ve taken hell a lot of trouble to invite me to this reunion. How could I ever say no I’m very much here. I could have told you all this in person but, there is nothing like a hand written letter. As you finish reading this letter look up.
Was it a dream? Hell, no… He was standing right in front of me. Tears of joy shone my eyes. A few things never change with age one of them was Karthik’s candid smile.
“Richard Sir would be so happy for you.” I said
“Where is he? I am dying to meet him.”
To be continued….