On One Missing Photograph

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I haven’t been one for misplacing things except once when I’d left a bunch of chronologically chosen photographs with a college friend because he could scan them at his home. I then took train. He took flight. There’s a slim chance I could get them back—after all it’s just been a decade since.

One that’s been rather special to me is a black’n’white photograph that my sister had lost. I remember nagging her, every time I visited hometown from work-town, she must hand it over, and she has this habit of ‘misplacing’ things. Here’s my theory as to why it went ‘lost’: She was much fonder of it than I was. It’s gone missing for eight years now.

That one is a picture of my IInd Standard wherein I stand, amid my classmates and teacher, (no one holding anything except me) holding in my hand a fancy ‘geometry’ box that aunt had brought from Kuwait. I remember it had a cushioned lid and a magnetic lid lock. I was so fond of it I wouldn’t part with it come recess, come whatever. It also brings to mind’s eye:

The knee-deep lake we’d walk across en route to tuition, father translating Tintin for me from The Week; real-life tales of the hero cop slain by thugs, the boy who drowned in a municipality tank, another who impaled himself playing with a sword; the fragrance of vibhuti, the slithering river sands under my feet right before I nearly drowned, playtimes that involved making balloons out of Nirodh, my indescribable addiction to notebook labels, and more that was Pattamadai in the early-to-mid nineteen-eighties.

And it was my only photograph from that place.

One brown sock emerged from a dusty rack, so, again, there’s the chance it could pop up anytime from anyplace.

101

(Rameshwaram beach, circa 1987 – Days of DD’s Malgudi Days)

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3 thoughts on “On One Missing Photograph

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