The Wonder Years !

So there ! The new year has brought in a reconnection ! Reconnection with long lost classmates from a distant time and a lost memory. Lost in the speed of day to day living and in the name of making a living !

Orkut and Facebook have suddenly occupied centrestage in life and voila, people that i last spoke to when the first dinosaur shed its last milk tooth suddenly came alive.

Well, the chaps from school did sound different ! Of course they would. I am sure they say the same of me, if not worse ! And boy do they look different !! Each with a kid or two. Some going to the same school that we went to. Some looking exactly as they used to. And many others, giving me comfort and company by looking…well, different !

An unintended consequence has been reminiscing the wonder years.

Those years where you played a serious cricket match (during a lunch break of 45 minutes), with a tennis ball and half a branch of a coconut tree. Years when the closest health worry was the quick healing of a twisted ankle, in time for the cricket match !

Those years where you had wind in your hair (and of course, hair in the first place..) and a spirit in your walk, that was tested only by the Maths test ! Years when ‘a house’ did not come with a home loan ! But with a sleeveless florescent vest !

“Houses” ( groups) you used to belong to for the Sports Day ! I think those houses, in our case, went by the name of Kaveri, Ganga, Yamuna, each signified and separated by a colour coded ( Fluorescent Blue, Green, Yellow, Red..) sleeveless vest !

Years when ‘competition’ didn’t mean valuation / contribution etc but simply : drawing, handwriting, essay writing et al !! And of course, those were the years when you got a prize for just showing up ! Yes. I recall winning a prize for two consecutive years years, for attending school without a single day of leave !! I wonder what i was thinking !

Those years of gleam eyed learning in the chemistry labs. In the library. In the Annual day. And the inevitable sinking feeling when the report cards showed up, or when parents were ‘summoned’ !

Years when ‘pedaling’ didn’t mean pedaling a stationary cycle to lose weight. But when you had to pedal all the way to school, and that you did with great fun ! And the jet black BSA SLR that stood gleaming at home, washed clean, many times in a week. My first set of wheels !

Years when you did not understand terrorism. When Soviet Union was ‘friend’, and disdain for anybody who said ‘America was good!’ Years of Span and Readers Digest. Years when you didnt care if your tie matched your shirt. And of course, didn’t care if the tie was in its place !

Years when you used to wear ‘colour dress’ on your birthday, and go from class to class, with a box of chocolates in your hand. Years when amma used to bake those wondrous sponge cakes !

Years when you didn’t understand what sex was ! And when you went up to appa, and asked aloud, (when he was with guests), ‘Appa, what is rape ?’. And tell him that the school has mandated reading of newspapers this question was part of home work !

Years when the only diet that you needed to be concerned of, was what was in the tiffin box, and of course,when calories where non-existent ! Years when holidays meant you play from morning to lunch time, have lunch, and then play from evening to late night and come home to have dinner and catch some sleep.

Years of static TV called Doordarshan. Of no FM radio. And no computers…. But those were years when you grew. Years that shaped you. Years that made you what you are today. Years that stay fresh in the mind. Every memory of it, brings a smile and a yearning for those times.

Today, classmates stay all scattered. Across the globe. Some working for those giant corporations, hospitals and other small companies. Many others, building their own organisations ! Still others married and settled down. And yet others remain untraceable !

But those shared years were the wonder years. Wonder years, when you could question anything and anybody. When the minds limit became clearer only when we graduated from each class to the next ! To me, those still are the defining years !

Defining wonder years !

A special thanks to Bala for the snaps !

15 thoughts on “The Wonder Years !

  1. ….And days when “monitor” didnt have anything to do with LCD, but had everything to do with wearing a badge, and writing down names of those who kept talking in class (and wrote yours when they were monitors..)….and we had punishments like writing(after school), ” I will not talk in class” , say 1000 times, and we shamelessly had these prepared in advance for all eventualities, so as to not miss the school bus…

    Indeed the wonder years. Thanks for a wonder posting !

  2. arun says:

    hi kavi,
    i could see myself peering out of those photos at a older me.mmm…well we shared them dont we?
    nice one! reminds me of madurai,vmj,lakshana,viji seetharaman,seralathan,teppakulam, “mattai” cricket(of course the day i was caught climbing the coconut tree), fetching the football from the “kalvai” and millions of other memories from my beloved madurai.ty fr the blog!

    have all the ol school mags,but jus lazy to get them here.i guess u must scan em individually rather than the collage.

    ready for another round of quizzing?

  3. Mahilchi says:

    yup those were the years when a school annual day meant weeks of doing actually nothing and never feeling tired. When the biggest worry was wondering who would snatch the latest hardy boy case files off the library shelf. I still see myself playing throughout the day or reading in the library during those summer holidays, when I spent more time at school than I did during term time. Days when I was inexhaustable, whereas today even after a 10 hour shift I feel rotten. Figures, Ive grown, and cant say that I love it.

  4. Nachi says:

    …those years!! *sigh


    Happy New Year mate…

  5. Braja says:

    I couldn’t imagine a reunion with my high school classmates!! That would be 30 years later…phew!

  6. manju says:

    ‘Wonder’ful post, Kavi! You made your wonder years come alive for me. 🙂

  7. True.
    I love to keep my child alive within myself always.
    Wishing peace & prosper 2009.
    Amen !

  8. Wondering how you were able to catch almost the same spot in almost all the photos.

    I still remember how dad & I followed you for some distance when you first started taking off to school in the BSA SLR. Then, you never bothered to set the bag positioning right. All you were interested was in swinging the bike like a pro.

  9. Dewdrop says:

    Those were simply the Wonder Years… carefree, innocent, fun and pure joy…

  10. Jeevan says:

    Wow!! That was fantastic kavi. Just morning I watched a news connected to this post where a school mates of 30 years meting somewhere within TN.
    Whatever u wrote are never get back, but exist throughout our lives in memories and gesture. What today’s children enjoy is not complete seeing those years. Very nice pics!!

  11. nsiyer says:

    Your post brought in all that I did or did not do in school.Was in a boys school and you know the rascals. School was opposite a co- ed college and what fun to fight with other boys to catch the seat opposite the window. Watching miniskirts and imagination running wild. Could go on. But decided to write a post soon. Thanks, Kavi for the inspiration.

  12. Kavi says:

    Ugich Konitari ! Imagine, i was called SPL. And that stood for School Pupil Leader ! And every time i went to a restaurant and read the menu card which used to say Spl Dosa…you know what would happen to me !?!

    Arun : quizzing…old for that now buddy. But revisiting the old memories..anytime ! anytime !!

    Maacha : Oh yes. Hardy Boys. 3 investigators. nancy Drew…my God. Dont even take me there !!

    Nachi : Happy new year to you too mate !

    Braja : That woudl be fun ! super fun ! I promise..try !

    Manju : Thank you !

    Hobo : Thank you ! Wishing you the same and more !

    Kamal : I guess it was the height thing..The relative height must have been constant across the class over th eyears. Wonder what it is now..!! And that SLR story…psst..will discuss in person !!

    Dew Drops : yes..werent they !!

    jeevan : Thank you ! Thank you !

  13. Cris says:

    gee you really could make a person nostalgic… way too much!
    Happy New Year Kavi!!
    The years of today will show up in your blog on another new year much much later when you’d jot down about everything including writing blogs and reading comments as nostalgic as you have done today!

  14. Sajan says:

    Even though this article is not about my class, i can relate to it… to the comments made here. it’s bledy nostalgic! 12 years in one place with the same set of friends, vmj was almost our second home.

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