Here's another picture that Daya found -- on a friend and former schoolmate's Facebook account, as the case may be -- and I'm posting it because it has quite a collection of old friends in it. I say quite a collection because although I remember there being some amount of preference when it came to who we hung out with in high school, the people in our class were very flexible and often these lines were blurred by the simple fact that we all got along swimmingly.
Alright, let me identify myself to serve as a point of reference, and to eliminate the painful need to have to describe myself again. I'm the guy with the stupid toothy grin/smile, sitting second in order if you go from left to right. There.
Sitting in position number one, is Yasser Mirza. The cousin of a famous Mirza, and himself a noteworthy tennis player -- actually all of these guys are -- Yasser was a bit of a maverick with brains. A triple threat, that's it. He dated some of the hottest girls in school, had brains and really good grades therefore, and was one helluva sports personality. He was on the "super senior" basket ball team with my man Moses. We did hang out on and off, but I remember Yasser for being one of the guys I could share my dumb jokes with and just goof off with together. He didn't goof off very often, mind you, but it's this quality that makes this time so memorable.
Moving on to the guy on my left, or right if you're looking at the picture...number 3 going from left to right, to make it easier for you, we come to Haresh Nagarajan. I've spent a lot of time with this guy, and we've had some fun times with him and his family, but Haresh continues to be a guy I've looked up to. Well, it's been a little over, what, 5 or 6 years since we were in touch at all, but I hear he's doing very well for himself. If there's one thing about this guy, it was that he'd make me laugh when I was feeling down, and he had a really insane sense of humor. This humor was both verbal and physical, but it was a treat nonetheless. For en example of verbal humor, he spent an entire evening scandalizing people as they walked into the high school building going, "Hey! Your epidermis is showing!" The looks on the faces of the almost 95% of the clueless, hapless school victims? Priceless! Some of them even started checking to see if they'd forgotten to zip up their pants!!! A sportsman par excellence, Haresh played every game there was to play with above average skill. He's what I would call a natural leader, and that's one of the reasons that I looked up to him then. I don't imagine things are very different now, but it would be nice to catch up with him again.
Last, but certainly not least -- to overuse this cliched segue -- we come to Udit Kapoor. He was a fun guy, always smiling and making others smile, and a very hard worker. Udit always had this intense, unending amount of energy about him, a real live wire. And this energy was infectious. Also, another guy with a great sense of humor, we enjoyed some silly jokes, and some of the Hindi ones he had to translate for me. Crazy guy man. As it turns out, I did manage to run into him a couple of years ago at a New Years party that I happened to crash. Alright, so I was invited, but I knew like 3% of the people there...and there were only like 15 people. Still hadn't lost that sense of humor, and what's more, it turns out he's a successful banker in London. How about that! I also have to thank him for the wonderful host that he was when I was in Bombay -- like it was back in the day before they started with the Mumbai nonsense -- immediately after our high school graduation. Those were some good times bro.
Wow...these trips down memory lane are getting me all choked up. You wouldn't say that from looking at this picture though, eh? ;-)
Oh man! I almost forgot!!! This picture was taken when we were on our "Senior Sneak"; a little escape, heavily chaperoned though it was, that we and the seniors before us got in our second semester of 12th grade, a couple of months before we graduated. This was at some hotel in Mahabalipuram and my most lingering memory of this trip was the fact that I had a really high fever throughout, all except for the last day. It was still lots of fun though. Come on. Am I not smiling? ;-)