Dear Neel #3
Dearest Neel, what kind of a year is this? Didn’t it simply sail through? Can you believe it is already September which is flying by us while I laze around writing letters to you? Nine months of a year gone by and what have I done? Half the year I have either been ill or looked after someone who is ill, the other half I have been worried sick about being ill. In what little time was left I read Proust. I read about food and literature and going for walks and beach views at Balbec and being jealous of our love interests. Are they honest when they say that one needs to be really sick to pick up Proust, to be infected for a long while to find the courage to pick up the seven volumes? Did I pick it up because I was sick? Or did I plan to read Proust and then I just fell ill? Anyways I am absolutely fine as of now and making speedy progress with Volume 5. At this rate I might as well finish it this year. I would be glad to do so. Finish reading it and to end the year. Won’t you be too? I mean what kind of a year is this after all?
I know neither do you care about Swann and Proust nor about the year. You have always been more pragmatic, sailing peacefully whatever comes your way. I on the other hand am leaning towards a more passionate and an aggressive side this year. Yes, despite everything that has been happening I am angry. Somehow I have the energy to be angry. I am surprising myself with this emotion. Not that I am never angry, but where is the energy anymore? I keep thinking three more months to go but then honestly it is the same cycle all over again. The dates change, nothing else. 2022, is it? I don’t even believe as I write this? Did I even live 2020 and 2021? Two years of life slipped through my fingers. Now you will tell me that everyone is going through the same thing. Everyone has some problem or the other. True.
So true. In fact the more I talk to people the more I think people are just lonely, and are aching to say something to someone, to let out what’s collecting inside. The other day I was talking to a friend and he started talking so fast and so soon, giving me all that was happening with him in his life, as if I was a ghost and would go away just as soon as I had come, as if I won’t listen and he needed someone, anyone to listen. People are not just unhappy, they are lonely. So much for numbers on social media, eh? People are sad. They have their problems. And they have others’ problems too. I can’t stop thinking about him and what he is going through and then just when I try and digress from it someone else comes up and bombards me with some other ugly news. Life has become a series of ugliness. Waaahhhh, don’t I sound ugly? And Am I not doing the same thing with you? Writing and making you miserable? You are so right in not writing back. Each month I am writing you one letter, each month you don’t write back. But I understand, what will you even write to me? The same old drab ugliness of life that falls on the other end? But may be the ugliness combined wouldn’t feel so ugly after all. God! I must stop with the term ugly. Proust has a hinge on me.
Write to me, will you?
PS: I wrote this to you someone around the beginning of the month, but didn’t have the audacity to send it to you. I contemplated, hovered over send, and then retreated, and then completely forgot about it until today. Today, I finally send. Today, I need the empty space where I can scream, again.
Read My Last Letter here: Dear Neel #2