About the Blog

This is my diary....what I make sense of, around me. You'll find short prose on contemporary topics that interest me. What can you expect - Best adjectives? …. hmm occasionally, tossed around flowery verbs ?…. Nope, haiku-like super-brevity? … I try to. Thanks for dropping by & hope to see you again

March 25, 2018

First Day First Show

The late seventies and mid eighties was the period when my best times stood still in early school memories. It was the time we swung to the music of BoneyM, ABBA,  and to local tunes like ‘Dafali waale Dafali bajaa’, ‘ I am a disco dancer’ and ‘Arre dewano…’in gay abandon as we chewed on the chunky bits of neelam supari and drowned it with Mainu’s lassi in school. Life’s simple pleasures lay outside the school gates but for those who could afford more, the canteen was a better choice. Back then it was at the basement, right at the far end corner of  the main building; a small rectangular cabin was to the left where teachers sipped their tea during break while students ordered their batata wada, tea and other snacks from the rear windows on the other side. An assortment of chocolate jars filled with Peppermints, Parle Kissme, Ravalgons, in an assortment of green, red and orange wrappers never ceased to attract atleast a passing glance as we took the stairs to class.

The Principal’s chamber was awe inspiring, the very thought of entering his room made me shudder with fright and anxiety.  The obvious situation called  for a reprimand or a dressing down in front of teachers or possibly my father for some patently naughty act or poor performance in tests. A brightly lit aquarium led us to his chambers while the science laboratory with its assortment of scientific instruments and displays was at the far end of the hallway that led to his chamber. Watching the dour fishes and the gentle sound of the bubble maker (aerator) only made the butterflies and the churning in the stomach a wee bit more intense as i waited for permission to enter his chamber.

All of us can look back on our school days and recall at least one, sometimes two or three teachers, whose influence on us was strong and permanent.  These were teachers who took interest in wards and encouraged them in their pursuits.  The teaching approach was different too, some like Ms. Pramila Savlekar & Mr. Premratnam  mixed a bit of story telling with studies. When they did, a dull class would spring to life, to hear stories of war, history and drama. No one forgets his school years. Memories of SMHS have only grown stronger over with the years. Each of us treasure our own special memories, but there are many that we have in common. Like that first day at School…………

I remember that day in 1976-77 when my father brought me to the 1st standard classroom, then situated at the old colonial structure in front of the main building. This square tiled house built of stone and mortar had four sections one of which was the PT room.  He drove his fiat into the campus right in front of the building as I sat next to him clutching my aluminum school box with strange anticipation. I later ventured out of the classroom during recess and walked the few steps down to the playground which was just in front of this class.  I recollect watching a small hand operated merry go round parked in one corner of the ground.  It stood eerily silent, probably because the operator was not around. Later that day I also remember a horde of some hundred odd small and big boys making a great deal of noise as they ran and tumbled about during what must have been the lunch break. I did not think I would survive amongst that rather rough-looking lot, and I remember telling my sobbing self; ‘Let me go home!”.

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