Couple of days back I had gone with my colleague to conduct a training session at a particular institute, and I met there a gentleman, whom I recognised as the person who had allotted my first ship as a junior engineer in the shipping corporation of india. There was no way that he might have recognised me, since I had only two interactions with him, and there were always hundreds like myself meeting him daily. After finishing the training session, I enlightened him about this casually, and he had a smile, and then said to himself, “It always comes back to you, you can’t get away from it”.
Yes, you can’t just shake off your past. It has happened with me many times. Some people on my ships became close friends of mine. There was one cook, and a second officer with whom I had sailed on a ship, and became good enough friends with each other to exchange phone numbers and home addresses. With promises of keeping in touch, I signed off from the ship. And during my six months leave, I never ever called any of them, leave alone visit. But on may next ship, both these people were present and it was an awkward moment for us.
A similar thing happened at the beginning of this new year. A chief engineer, with whom I was in touch, but had not called for a long time after taking up a job on land, called for new year wishes from ship. I felt ashamed, since he was quite a senior chief engineer, and I hadn’t called him since a long time, but he remembered me on the new year day, and that too from ship.
After meeting this gentleman at the training centre, I remembered all this, and I realised that there is no way we can ge away from your past, and the people in it. We are bound to cross paths one day. Its ok if the acquaintance was only casual, but if the relationship was deep, its better to stay in touch.
I have started to rake up old phone diaries, and call up people who had meant somthing to me at some point of my life.