A friend in need

I would keep talking about my stories but as this is a place full of stories, I would like to share the one I came across here ….here it goes ..

This was one of the most unforgettable memory of my childhood through which I got a friend who was more like a sister to me. I was around 8 years old.

I was traveling in electric train with my 16 year old cousin. We both played a small game by getting down at each station and getting back aboard when the train starts again. At a particular station we both got down. He got back on but I wasn’t able to because of the crowd. He shouted at me to get on to the next compartment.

Following his command, I got into the next compartment. I was shocked when I found out that it was the ladies compartment. Since, I was a kid nobody seemed to care. Infact there were many kids my age inside the compartment.

This one particular lady came near me and asked where my mom was. I replied that I was alone. She suddenly got serious and said,

How dare you get inside ladies compartment. What would do if the ticket inspector catches you.??

She also added that he’ll hand me over to the police if I get caught. Although she did that for fun, I wasn’t matured enough to understand that. I became nervous and tears started rolling out of my eyes. She then tried consoling me but she only ended up making me crying aloud.

That’s when this friend held my hand. She moved into our neighboring house only a week before. I haven’t seen or talked to her. But she has seen me while sleeping when she came home to speak with my mom . she was returning home from college with her friends. Although she knew it was me, she wasn’t sure since she saw me only for the few seconds and that too while sleeping.

She held my hand and kneeled before me and asked

Thambi nee naveen thana??

Translation : Brother, you are naveen. Right?

I nodded yes.

She wiped the tears off my cheeks and took me to her seat and made me sit next to her. She asked me not to cry. But I was really afraid about getting caught. So, she consoled me by saying that if someone asks she’ll say that I am her younger brother.

That made me feel a little better. But, I was still sobbing. She put her hands around my shoulder and pulled me closer. She gave me some water and starting speaking about my school and friends.

The train stopped at the next station. I got up immediately and starting running towards the door. She came running behind me asking me not to run. I got down and ran back to the original compartment with my cousin. She got back after she made sure I boarded the train.

Later that evening she came to our home. My mom thanked her helping me. She just smiled, pulled both my cheeks with her hands and said He’s like my little brother.

After that, we became close. I always spent my evenings after school at her home. She took me out occasionally and even cooks for me sometimes. We became so close that I sometimes spent my night there. She’ll introduce me as her brother to anyone. I always called her akka (Elder sister).

All that continued for like 3 years until she got married and moved out . Few months later, her family too moved out. I completely lost her contact. I’ve tried many ways to get her phone number. I even asked her friends. But everybody’s reply was that she moved to Australia with her husband and she wasn’t using her Indian phone number anymore.

I always felt like wanting to meet her again but that never happened.

I’ll miss her till the end of my life. ❤️