Pooja V Shetty
It’s been more than 9 years since I passed out from Navodaya. But memories are so clear that I cannot believe it has been so many years. There are many reasons why my school remains so close to my heart. It is because my best friends are from here. It is because of all the experiences that has made me a better person. Definitely all of us have changed over a period of time. Our lifestyle has changed, our taste has changed, and our opinion about few things has changed. Our sensitivity towards few things has changed for ex: dust, water, food, religion, relationship. But we are still able to share things and laugh about it or get over it.
Chuppi, my bunker mate! We were so lazy and messy that, we would dump all our clothes and books in one bed and sleep together in single bed. She could teach me math and wake me up in the morning (She was forced to get up early after she became leader 😉 )but she could never teach me to dance.
Chaya and me were the best time managers and most resistant and tolerant to scolding’s. We usually were the last to join assembly line. We would sleep for precious 25 minutes after the mass PT. Once after everyone starts to get ready and leave, we would go and take bath. We never unpinned our duppattas from the uniform like everyone did. We did it only once in a week. Sometimes we would go to junior’s house to take bath. They adored us so much that, they would let us take bath without any complaint. Not everyone could do this. After bath we would take our shoes and run outside before main door was closed. Tying 2 plaits was one more pain (not for me though, I had boy cut till 10th). Rashmi would always get it tied in the classroom after assembly was over before the guys entered the classroom.
Once we did jaagarne on shivaraathri. We decided to read ‘tulsi dala’ that night. It was me, wode, mukki and UK. We had collected all snacks for the whole night and finished them on hourly basis. Every half an hour each one of us would read aloud. In between I went to wake up mukta who had slept off in between; I came back running and scared because her face was all BLUE. Who has read the book will know what I mean.
For very very serious reason we have got scoldings. Divya was once instructed by Katte sir to not wear “gejje” as its sound attracts boys. Zubeida ma’m would tell us to wear pant inside frocks so that they don’t fly because of fan in the mess 😉 We were made to run 10 rounds in the ground for joining tea line in between (for being in NCC and still breaking rules so openly). We were thrown out of hindi class for reading a novel (holding them inside the text book).
We did not have iron box to press our uniforms. I would get it ironed after every holiday. And maintain the crease for the next 2-3 months by not wringing shirt and skirt after each wash. Press geometry box over it, fold the clothes neatly and leave it overnight under the bed. Girls were comparatively neater. But I remember cleanest among our class guys was Kumar. From top to bottom. Sometimes his white and white would turn blue and blue 🙂 (ujaala effect)
Birthday celebrations were really unique. Lucky ones were those who had their birthdays soon after parent’s day. We always made creative cakes out of all the snacks our parents had brought. My birthday is on 25th and my cake was usually made of biscuits, ghee and chatni puDi (left overs!!)
I’m closer to my school friends now than ever before. We fight even now. Wode gets irritated when I brush in front of her or when I don’t close the door before leaving the room. I don’t think she has any better reason to not call me the best roomie. Even I have grown used to her usual “I don’t like coriander stem”, “Don’t put so much ginger and garlic” or “I don’t like that vegetable”. How do you know if something is good or bad until you try it? She understands it sometimes and forgets sometimes. I have learnt to add her non favorite ingredients in her absence. I don’t know how she managed to teach me to dance; no one had dared do it before. After learning each step I was like “Shwetha, my body is not made for dancing, every new step gives me back ache”. I’m still amazed how that back which never bends could dance!!
I remember when me and shwetha went on terrace during 10th study hours. We would watch birds and discuss whether ants walk or run. It was common that few of us fought and did not talk to each other for years. After a while no one knew the reason why they had actually stopped talking. Talking indirectly to our enemies or guys was common. Chiddu reminded this to me few days back. He was taunting “Pooja eegalu indirect aagi maataaDOdu biTTilla neenu?” Never spoke to our class guys in school. But they are good friends now.
Mine and Muktha’s parents always sat together during parent’s day. Biryani was my mom’s specialty. I would eat till I was about to puke. Even my brother complains now, it was good when you were in Navodaya. He got to eat biryani every month without a miss. “Ginna” was my favorite. I always got a bite of it whenever veena’s mom or bhavya’s mom got it. My gang of gals were discussing that they hated meeting my parents because my dad’s first question whenever he met any of my friends was “Esthu marks ninge”. And he just dint leave it there, he would ask why so less? You should study well! Its okay, next time do it better! Thats the reason why you are all here. Thats my dad!!
I wrote letters to my parents just because everyone wrote. It always started and ended with the same line. In between I would fill with things that they should get for me. My dad would tease me if I cried. I never cried. I never showed emotions before. I do show now. I have learnt with time that it is important to show them. It’s my friends who taught me to care for others. It’s them who sometimes correct me when I’m wrong.
Finally, dunno if this is relevant now. But want to say no one is born lucky. No one is born with a talent or no one is born without it. Many things can be earned through hard work. Something that you have because of luck is temporary. Thing earned through hard work lasts much longer. Best singer of my class doesn’t sing anymore. We thought she will be a great singer someday. Success does not always depend just on marks. It takes dedication, talent and constant effort.
This is why I say Life is beautiful. Take a moment. Refresh your memory. Feel blessed!
Posted By Pooja V Shetty, 14 Nov 2018