My best friend Supriya

I have known her since I was four. But from four until eight, I just knew her as Sunetra’s younger sister. Somehow we ended up in the same class in fifth grade and suddenly I had a new best friend and she was there to stay. I was quite the juggler before that. I had a best friend in nursery, another until third and another one in fourth. But once Supriya walked into my life, we stuck together like, well, like us.

Why I’m writing this post today is because I was at her dance performance today. You see, my best friend is a Bharathanatyam dancer. She is also a designer and an entrepreneur. Let’s just say, there never is a time when her basket is empty. She is so busy all the time. And still magically, she ends up being there when I feel like an orange candy or swimming.

Photography by Jitesh

Her dance performance today – I don’t know how to put it. I’m not an emotional person really. But today when I saw her dance, I was in tears. Her every move is graceful, beautiful, authoritative and majestic all at the same time. She is an angry Shiva, a devotional Draupadi and a playful Krishna, all in a matter of five seconds. How she changes her expressions without so much as a thought, I’ll never understand. When she is on stage, she is in her own world, happily ignorant of everything around her, but she pulls the audience into her world, making them forget everything around them as well. She has this uncanny ability to posses the audience. I don’t know if it just happens to me. I noticed today as she was enacting a piece, my expressions were changing constantly with hers. If she made a surprised face, I’d make one too, if she was disgusted, I was disgusted too. Strangely, after she danced and stood still with joined hands, I found myself heaving tiredly along with her. I could help but laugh to myself.

Before her, I had never known this dance form. Honestly, to me, Bharathanatyam is Supriya. A few years back, during her performances, I’d giggle at some movements, like when Parvathi creates Ganesha and carves the eyes, nose and mouth, I’d imagine her drawing a smiley face in the air and secretly laugh. But today, I was so engrossed, I was smiling with glee and adoring the Ganesha I created with her.

Supriya and I are opposites. We have no similar interests, except perhaps orange candy. We never really do things together, except get together at home and watch Princess Diaries. No other movie. Just Princess Diaries. I don’t remember how many times. I lost count after 36.

She lives one road away from mine and we’d walk back together from school, kicking every pebble we found on the road and talking 45 minutes to walk 200 metres. We were together in our 11th and 12th. Of course, we have had our differences, because I can be a downright snob sometimes. But I don’t think we can ever be angry with each other forever. She always finds ways to make me feel good. If I’m down after Arsenal have lost or something, she – oh wait. She rubs it in and annoys the hell outta me about how she thinks Manchester United are the best. Ugh! For all she cares, Christiano Ronaldo stills plays for them.

But she is such a bold girl. (Of course if someone must talk about Manchester United when I’m pissed, they must be bold!) I admire her. There have been times when I have been jealous of her because of her self confidence and convincing skills and all her artistic talents. But now I’m a bit too mature to feel jealous of things. I’m glad for her super-powers. I know she’ll be famous one day.

She is leaving in a few weeks to UK to study Graphic Design at the University of Birmingham. I have no clue how, but just over the past few weeks, I feel I have grown closer to her. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing because I’m going to miss sitting on the footpath late at night, sitting and talking about – Gosh! What do we talk about? I’m going to miss our late night Mississippi Mudpies. I’m going to miss having someone who shares my sudden urge to go next to Eat Out and (Supriya, you know what follows). I’m going to miss harassing boys during our 6th main walks (kadlekai). I’m going to miss goalgappa.

Also, there won’t be anymore orange candy.

Oh man! We seriously need better pictures of us!

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