“Not again Mumma, I went to school yesterday only…..What? Why do we have to go to school daily…?”
“No Mumma…I don’t want to get wake up now, I don’t want to get ready, and it is too early in the morning…I can eat my lunch box later at home only…!”
This is what I used to think, school is a place to go and eat lunch; that’s all, initially there was no other meaning of the place to me. I guess that is why I skipped my nursery class and join school one year later than other kids. My Bhaiya still teases me for that.
After all the effort that my mother put in, I finally started to go to school, and after a while, I liked it so much that I got upset if I ever had to miss it. This is the first most crystal clear memory that I have when I was a kid.
My Papa used to drop me to school on his way to work (as my brother had an earlier shift). Those half an hour long lunch breaks, that gave us sufficient time to eat and play; those Merry Go ‘Round, See-Saws, Swings and Slides used to be the best amusement park ever.
Even though the day at school was so much fun, the best part of the day was the last bell….Home time!
I used to go home with my Bhaiya on his bicycle (our day end time was same) and I always used to pick my Mumma’s favourite flower on the way back. I never let Bhaiya ring the door bell rather he had to pick me up for me to ring it and then I used to hide that flower behind my back and before giving it to my mom I always asked, “Mumma, guess what I brought for you?” And the best part was Mumma always guessed it wrong! (Though she always knew what it was).
Then it was the lunch time (again!). And any meal at home used to be incomplete without television. And then began the never ending World War III, the war with my brother to keep the remote control (even though we are watching the same channel; I should be the owner of the remote at all times!). After all the shouting, name calling; finally Mumma used to interfere and having the advantage of being a younger child, I somehow got to keep the remote most of the times!
Then came the worst part of the day – Homework time! Though it was too less when I see it now, but at that time it was like climbing Mount Everest every day! I always feared about my image – the impression I created on my teachers specially, so my homework was always complete and I was always on time for submitting my homework, whether it was Hindi (which was the most difficult subject for me that time) or art and craft!
“Ting ting…ting ting…”
The sound of the bells that used to make me rush to the door…wondering what it was this time…
Aahaaa…Cotton candy is here…yummm….
Sometimes it was the golgappas or the ice cream, even balloons. These were the treats that used to come to your doorstep for you to enjoy. And as a kid, these were the gifts that I used to get after completing my homework (that was another reason for me to complete it!).
Then it was evening time. Unlike now at that time I used to play some real games – the infinite skipping competition, hide and seek, lock and key or sometimes marbles or cricket with my Bhaiya. And then there were some seasonal games like kite flying or the home and kitchen game during summer vacations.
The playing time generally ended with Papa returning home on his bike and taking me for a quick ride around the colony. My love for bike rides was there even was I was just 4.
Then when back to home, there came the story time, telling Papa every detail of the day and he boasted me for everything – things like completing my homework, winning the skipping game, etc etc!
Then comes the time of the day which I really miss nowadays – The Family Dinner. All the four members of our small family sat together to have dinner. There was very little conversation, mostly the room was filled with the sound of the evening news that Papa used to watch but still that half an hour really mattered to me the most that time and I still cherish those memories.
Then after a little bit of jumping here and there, Mumma used to make my bag ready for the next day. After that I used to lie in my mother’s lap on the sofa where sometimes Mumma and other times Papa used to tell me stories. With the loving stroking of hair, I fall asleep.
Next morning, miraculously I woke up in my bed and the day begins again.
Those were the days…when I was a kid…when I could find happiness in everything little thing…when I was always content with what I had… and everything was so simple, life was so carefree and filled with joy.
Over the time a lot of things have changed. I am not a kid anymore. No matter how badly I want that time back but now it’s only in my memories to cherish for the lifetime.