Counting on Friends
Writer Opala Haider
Courtesy : Opala Haider
I was a student of Pallabi MI Model High School and I believe I had a very regular life on campus. It was nothing special, especially since most students would study for a few years and then leave. Hence, I had to make new friends all the time! I was never a brilliant student. However, I had secured the first position from the Arts group in Class 9 and had even received a prize for it. Interestingly, the prize I had received was a book published by Student Ways, one of the oldest publishing houses in Bangladesh. Years later, this publishing house published my first book and many more later on!
I did my college (Classes 11 and 12) at the Viqarunnisa Noon College and those were the two most fun years ever. I joined the Department of Anthropology in Dhaka University (DU), afterwards. I made a lot of friends at university as well, who I still meet. To date, my friends are probably the very first few to buy and read my books, every year, after they hit the stores.
These friends of mine have also been major pain in the neck! I remember an incident, where I was walking towards Kalabhaban (Arts Faculty) at DU, when suddenly I got caught between two student political groups carrying out a michil (protests), coming from two different directions. In such cases, usually the protests end up with a lot of fighting, bloody noses and so much more. I was aware of all that, which is why I went blank for a few seconds, thinking for a way out. My friends, who ran for safety to the second floor of the building, were calling out to me from the rooftop to run fast and not just stand there. Some of them had begun to laugh out loud from the rooftop pointing at me and my weird expression!
In my third year of university, my first book, Punorabritty was published and a picture of me and my uncle, Iqbal mama (writer Dr Mohammad Jafar Iqbal) was in the news papers. That day was a day of celebration in my class! My friends bought the book and were reading it out loud and critiquing it as well.
I am glad I have so many friends I can count on when in need -- be it a crisis at work or to reach a deadline for a publication -- my friends are always there for me and I hope they continue being there forever.