Naresh Ramchandani – Having, Losing, Remembering

First, having.

1980. My father buys me the first Sony Walkman, a surprise gift for completing my O-levels. Life changes. I have headphones on my ears, music in my life and the future in my pocket. The joy lasts three or four years before wear takes its toll, mechanisms break and the Walkman is filed away in a bedside drawer.

Then, losing.

2003. Our family is on holiday when we get a call from my mother and another from our neighbour: my father is ill, and our home has been burgled. We return to London in time to be with my father when he dies. At home, the burglars have taken few things of worth. But in my bedside drawer, they have found the old Walkman, and taken it.

Then, remembering.

2015. My family buys me an old Sony Walkman for Christmas. It is large, simplistic and heavy, like a prop from an old sci-fi film. Bearing a similar array of scratches and dinks, it is almost identical to my old one, except it works. Some special memories return: of music introduced by a tape hiss, of cassettes you have to forward and turn, and of the kindness of my father. 

Image Naresh Ramchandani

Naresh is a writer, a music lover, a Co-founder of environmental non-profit Do The Green Thing and a Partner at Pentagram Design. Wherever possible and however possible, he tries not to buy any new things.