25th April ’21,Sunday, will always remain a key day in my life. On this day, I lost my life-long friend of 46 years, Deepak Ranjan Gupta (Rana) to COVID-19. We met in Vizag in the 1970s when he used to come on behalf of his company M/s Kusum Products from Kolkata. We met through a common friend, Arun, and then it was mutual chemistry. We became such good friends, that Rana brought his wife, Noton to Vizag on his next trip. Rana and Noton were childhood friends, who fell in love and married and lived 2 buildings away from each other in Lansdowne Terrace, near Deshapriya Park in Kolkata. So, me, Arun, Rana and Noton, became quite a foursome. Arun had his scooter, I had my mobike, and Rana and Noton were pillions in those two vehicles. We saw movies together, went to the beaches together, partied together, and spent a lot of time together after work and on weekends. That friendship lasted till this last Sunday morning, when Noton rang me up and told me, that my friend is gone. Till Saturday evening, we were discussing his health on phone and there was nothing which was alarmig. But this is how Covid attacks.
Today I feel a void in me, which I did not feel before. When someone so close leaves you, the loss is then felt and you come to know what kind of mental space he had occupied within me.
My wife Ranjana is Noton’s niece. And it was both of them, who initiated this discussion to get us married. I have had many friends, acquaintances in my life. But Rana-Noton was very close and the difference between them and anyone else was, they always felt good about me, never asked questions about anything I did and were always with me in whatever I did. Rana was very proud of me and whenever anyone said anything not so nice about me, he used to get offended on that person. They were biased, but proudly so. Today when he is gone, I can only pray for his soul to rest in peace. May God give him all the solace, happiness, peace, as he travels on his next journey.
BYE MY FRIEND! It was great knowing you! I would forever remain YOURS totally.
Stay well, my friend, wherever you are. Love you.
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