How I Miss Them!!!!

The door bell rang. Lazily I crawled out of my blanket leaving a bookmark between the pages of the book I was reading. I prayed it shouldn’t be the iron man or the DVD picker. To my surprise, it was my school buddy, who is now working in Hyderabad. I was thrilled, it’s after a long time I’m meeting her. We hugged each other and screamed in joy! After scanning her from head to toe, I made the judgment – “You are no more growing horizontal!” I knew that would be the statement that would excite her the most!

Like a refugee from Bangladesh she opened the fridge, pulled out whatever her fingers could reach and started eating (hogging). Simultaneously, she narrated her experience of rushing back home from office to pack her bag to board the evening bus from Hyderabad. The child in me arose from within myself when she was around. We passed comments on each other's hair and skin and what not..!!!??? Now, the whole world belonged to me!

Suddenly I felt I was being dragged somewhere else. I realized the door is closed, Jagjit Singh was still singing a sad song in low volume. Apart from him, it was only the fan on the ceiling that made some noise in the house. Disappointment was at its heights when I realized it was all a dream. How I wish if it could come true! The half read Jeffry Archer lying beside my pillow gave me a sarcastic smile..!!!

I love to remember few instances in my life, which I will cherish forever. Most of the pictures in my memory album are the ones with my friends, painted in shades of brown and white. The school playground, the big mango tree inside the school compound, the stage, canteen, library, staircase, LKG hall, school bus… all of them stands testimony to 14 years of learning – from Humpty Dumpty to Differentiation and Integration! I’m sure; they will also recognize me and bunch of my crazy friends, who once up on a time had spent years together, holding hands.. celebrating childhood. Speak about morning assembly; there is only one picture that would flash across my mind. The same holds true with geography or civics teacher, weekly Gita lessons, school celebrations, punishments, competitions, picnics, etc. Even today, Britannia biscuit reminds me of the coffee breaks I enjoyed till Class IV.

The last bit of innocence left somewhere deep inside me, too drained out when I stepped out of the school gate. Now is when I realize the world is so materialistic!! As life rolls on, I meet not-so-good people, I behave not-so-well; people take me for granted and I too take some for granted. That makes me wonder, "Has 'being GOOD' become a thing of the past?"

Time compels me to play different roles at various stages in life. From a daughter, I was promoted to a sister and now (even) to a wife! However, I feel I'm still a child only when I drag myself to the pages of yesterday, to those days when I was amongst friends, sharing everything under the sun. Good friends are hard to find, harder to leave, and impossible to forget. Proudly I would say, I belong to the elite class of having a bunch of amazing friends.

True friends just happen in life, they share both your joy and sorrows. During one phase of my life, when I felt the tunnel would continue to be dark, it was one such guy who assured me that at the end of it, definitely I would experience light. A valued friend he is - who is always the happiest in my ups and stands by me when I feel low. Even today I remember; a little fellow he was in Class 6, who put his head down one day and cried when he missed a question to answer in a class test!! What a big deal it was then!!!

To the world, two of them who walk together could be such a great mismatch. I remember lot of such friends in school and college. One might be bright in studies and the other would be struggling to score even pass marks in exams. Due to disparity in body language, some of them were even called “Laurel and Hardy”!! This girl, school’s best singer who was above average in studies was also teachers’ pet!! I’m sure at least some in school would have wondered what business she shares with a mischievous girl like me!! I believe its destiny, even after each of our marriage, we have shared time together and we are aware of even the minute things still happening in each of our lives.

Rarely one would get a life long pal, somebody with whom you have spent almost your entire life! This girl is an expected mommy and a doctor today, but to me she is an ever dear friend who has been with me throughout my school days and in my neighborhood while studying further after school. We are now celebrating more than 2 decades of friendship! Yet another dignified doctor, who has been my exam partner for years, can’t be left out. He is popular in the friends circle by the name of a renowned film star in Malayalam. Yes Mammoo.. I’m talking abt you! Out of loads of good friends, lemme tell you abt this guy too, before I put a pause to this post. He has been with me in college as well to make me feel the transition pleasant. Buddy.. you have always been a great companion!

A million thanks to the decision maker above, for being considerate and biased!!!

As I continued my journey, I met lot more people, with whom I became really close. Within a span of 2 – 3 years they could understand me in and out. We have chosen different paths, from preparing for civil service exam to a secure family life in London or else where. After school, the experience was totally different, bringing the whole world into one room inside the hostel. That is where I learnt the importance of money, caring and sharing. Guess it would be appropriate to tell about hostel life later, in some other post.

Sending emails and jotting down some thoughts like this through blogs have become the easiest way to express love and affection. The so called software life has compelled each of us to leave things that we hold close to our heart down the ladder of preference. These days, we talk more about traffic congestion, on going projects at work, tools used to run the program, rising and falling stocks, real estate price, escalating cost of living, etc.. Seldom we get time to open the book of memories and smile at the years that passed by. May be at times, dreams become reminders of childhood, just like she knocked my door…!!!!


Vidya said...

I just hope for your sake that 'S' comes and knocks at your door one of these days... Shud i send her the tickets? Just to make your dream come true? anything for you, my darling!!! a very well written post and just took me down my memory lane of the said Mango tree, the LKG hall, The labs and also the Childrens Week..... Not to Forget,Ms.Roopa and Ms.Vasanthi

Shalini Surendran said...

Thank u so much Vidyechi..!! I know u will do it for me any day!!
Yeah.. chinmayans are always proud to be a CHINMAYAN..!!

A Simple Pendulum said...

I feel so jealous of Chinmayans who studied in CVC right from LKG. I joined there only in my 8th and had tough days while in Chinmaya because I was following state syllabus until then & the shift to CBSE was really difficult for me. I however love the school for how it helped me with this transition. I remember how I felt when I failed in 4 subjects including computer science in the first term of me joining there. But, the teachers were patient enough and there was no judging or comparison as such though I was a poor student then. Remember, I was in the class of one of the most brilliant and smart students Chinmaya ever had - Manju.

Most of the teachers unlike in other schools never used to compare students and they were never partial. The PTA meetings were conducted with good intend and they really helped my parents to identify where I was lacking or struggling. This helped me gained all my confidence back and I somehow managed to come out with good marks in X. I never had to go for tuitions. I also don't remember carrying so much of homework.

Though, the school had charged a higher fees compared to the one where I studied earlier, here it was just not about money & the school never made us feel that it was for pure business that they are running it.

I can never forget those teachers who have influenced my life. Premeela miss for teaching us the importance of dressing according to the occasion, Kaleshan sir for his amazing classes on literature and philosophy, Chandini miss, Usha miss, Nirmala miss, Naina miss & Kausar miss - for instilling scientific temper in us, Anoop sir for his sincerity in teaching Mathematics, Vasanthi miss who taught us what it is to be good citizens. Rasika miss - I was scared for her because of her English classes & I was very bad at English then (& even today). But, I am very grateful to her for not putting me down because I was struggling with the language classes then. That I believe is a very important trait to have in a teacher. Most of the teachers in Chinmaya were trained for this, I guess. Ravindran sir, Bhargavan sir - All helped us to handle the pressure of the entrance examination which were to face. I am sure that I missed out few important names.

I remember the day when I was playing in the rain when I was in XII and how Sugeetha mam called me to her room and how she put it in my mind with so much of love that I am one of the senior students in the schools and how juniors would be looking up to me.

Chinmaya Kannur, is definitely a successful school. They helped us grow up as good human beings. No wonder, when I was looking for a school for my son, I was looking for something which is at least somewhere near Chinmaya in quality & attitude.

One more thing, I have noticed about Chinmaya is the gender neutrality they promoted. I myself cannot believe that one of my good friends in XI standard was a guy. We used to wait for each other in the school after our National Anthem and walk together to the bus stand\railway station. No body raised an issue or concern about this. Again, remember we are talking about the late nineties. How many schools in Kerala would have encouraged this?

Shalini, you are so lucky to have studied there right from your KG. Your friendship with S always reminds me of my days at Chinmaya. :)

A Simple Pendulum said...

The way you put words together, you make us fall in love with you, girl. :)

"Good friends are hard to find, harder to leave, and impossible to forget. Proudly I would say, I belong to the elite class of having a bunch of amazing friends."


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