The Nostalgia Conversations

The Nostalgia Conversations

I opened the car door; I had reached home. “So late? Where had you been?” Lulu, my parrot, was perched on the mango tree near my garage.

“We had a big party tonight, Lulu. I am feeling so happy; I met several old colleagues. There were about forty or so of us. Everybody was so excited to meet old colleagues, some of us were meeting after twenty-five years.”

“Wow! That sounds nice.”

“The organizer, he was one of our erstwhile colleagues, asked invitees to send the old photographs. Many of them sent old photographs. Wedding photographs are a good source to capture images of old friends.”

“You mean old images of friends?”

“Ha-ha! That is also true.”

“What changes did you notice?”

“Almost everybody had put on weight, some had good beer bellies”


“The crown on the head was gone. Or it was a remnant of the past.”

“Nothing interesting?”

“Yes, along with the hair on the head, gone were the moustaches. With one exception.”

“I know who you are referring to. He is an army officer’s son. What were they talking? It must have been a big trip of nostalgia.”

“Yes. A big nostalgia trip. They talked about the opening of a sales depot. Or somebody’s marriage. Or a party at somebody’s home. So many unforgettable events.”

“No talk of a few ‘difficult moments’?”

“Well, yes, there was some talk about difficult moments, and the tone was ‘oh, how we overcame those tough times.’”

“Like?” Lulu has this nasty habit of asking for evidence.

“Like when dealers suffered a huge loss in a certain city, for no fault of theirs, but due to mindless communal violence, the manager was asked to reimburse the loss of goods trusting the statement of the dealer. No question asked. No proof asked. Just the word of the dealer was enough.”

“Wow! That’s quite unlike a businessman.”

“True, Lulu.”

“Being with them in their difficult times. Everybody would like to do, but not many actually do.”

“You said it.”

“Why do you think people did not discuss unhappy events, or event which they remember with regret.”

“That’s interesting. Let me think…… Nobody talked about how they helped increased sales or formulate a strategy. Nobody talked about what they did for the company. They talked of happy personal events, they talked about what company did to them. Everybody was so positive.”

“Why does it happen? That’s my question.”

“Research says ‘nostalgia makes people feel more socially connected to others, it boosts positive feelings about themselves.’”

“Stop throwing the HR Gyan at me. It’s okay if you don’t know. Hmmm….. Tell me if you met anybody interesting?”

                                                  [Image intentionally blurred]

“Yes. A colleague underwent bypass surgery to remove six blocks just forty-five days ago and yet he made it to this meeting. Isn’t that amazing?”

“Amazing indeed. Six blocks removed from his arteries! Take that as a metaphor….  Time dissolves blocks of negativity that occupy your mind, you forget them. You look at your life more objectively. And you think of positive events with a sense of gratitude that it happened to you. Not because of you. Wasn’t that the tone of the manager who said he was asked to reimburse the loss of goods trusting the statement of the dealer?”

“So true. You got it right.”

“When good things get done, small or big, whether done to you or done through you, remember that you were ‘chosen’ for that task. You can’t change the past but you can reinterpret it.”

“That’s some food for thought.”

Lulu tapped on the pen in my pocket. “And remember – if you wish to rewrite your past you must write your autobiography! Do you get me?” Lulu winked at me as he flew away.  

Vivek S Patwardhan