Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Au Revoir..


6 January 1996

It's 5:59 A.M. , Tanu, a five year old girl is sleeping peacefully, snuggled with her favourite blanket. It's a blue and white printed one, with a delicate, dainty deer prancing in the thick foliage. She is contently dreaming of a word, a universe she is the princess of! ( She never wanted to be the queen, as it was..so..umm..BIG people types. As is queens are like MOMS! Naah!) It's so cold, (the Delhi winters are.) that she keeps wading deeper into her blanket. (No, she hates calling it blankie, that's so kiddish.) Thanks to somebody who switched on the tubelight, white blinding light is now flooding her room and she wakes up. Groggily. It's 6:00 A.M. , her dad tells her, (she doesn't know how to see the time.) and it's dark, creepily very dark outside. The cute girl now reluctantly gets off the bed, peeps outside the huge glass window and asks her dad, with her big brown eyes wide open with fear, "Dad..Why have you woken me up in the middle of the night?"

Her dad smiles and says, "Sweety, it's the first day of your NEW school today! You have a new bottle, new bag, new tiffin, new books...." and she is already wondering , "What a weird place, they go to school in the night?!"
She wanders into the kitchen , looks at her new tiffin box, it's a pink one with disney princess' sticker on it. "EEEEEWW, I hate these girly stuff!" she says to herself and walks away.

Tanu's family had shifted from their house , in South Delhi to East Delhi. It was a proud moment for her parents as this was their first OWN house! They'd spent 6 years of their married life crammed in a rented flat in South Delhi and were now happy to finally have different rooms for their daughters and grandma.

So Tanu was uprooted from her cute, flowery nursery school and admitted to a reputed school near her house. What's the big deal you ask? Well, she was in K.G. or U.K.G. , and did not even complete it and was directly admitted to Grade 1, which was DAMN scary.

She dressed up, went to the bus stop with her dad, got introduced to so many bhaiyyas and didis, who had no brains and were just "oohing" and "aahing" over how cute she was! She remembered one particular sweet didi though , who was wearing a pretty frock, as it was her birthday. :)

she got into the bus amidst all the commotion and sat there, shit scared. Not that she had never travelled in a bus, it was just that there was a sea of god knows how many new faces! The bus, after many twists, turns, crossings, stops, finally stopped in front of a huge grey building with kids swarming in and out of it. Everyone started getting out of the bus, so did little Tanu. She was bewildered and astonished by the sheer magnitude of the place. She slowly walks inside and STOPS.
BANG! She does not know where her class is! She searches frantically for the nice, kind didi from the bus stop, and finds her, only to realise that she is miles , miles away. She is then spotted by a helpful bhaiyya who leads her to I-B , her new classroom. She enters , trembling, asks for the class teacher, as her dad had instructed her. She walks a bit more inside and asks a little boy of her age, perhaps, for a certain Mrs. Egbert, and the boy says, there's no Mrs. Egbert, and the class teacher is Shirley Ma'am.

Tanu was devastated! Where will she go now? What will she do!? Fortunately The Class Teacher came, and she was Mrs. Egbert and Tanu was relieved. She introduced herself, by saying that she is Mrs. Shirley Egbert. So, it was all clear.

After the initial introduction of the class, as she was a new girl, the studies started. It was the maths class, and these kids were doing 2 digit addition! She had only been taught single digit! What was this? The teacher wasn't explaining anything, as she did not know that Tanu was promoted from a lower class to Class 1. But, she did not lose hope, she went to the teacher, asked her how to do all that addition, and did not understand of course. She came back to her seat, sat there silently crying and prayed hard for the day to end so that she could go back to her mom and dad. The day gradually ended, with many more sad events, as everything written is a higher level than what she studied in her nice school back in South Delhi. She hated the school! She had decided that she will tell her dad to put her back into the nice school and not in this BIG, BAD school. Even when she was wondering, she did not realise that she did not know which bus route was she in! There were so many buses, so many children, so much of everything! She finally found the birthday didi and stuck onto her and reached home in the Bus (route no 13 she finally got to know) tired and heart - broken. This was it. She was changing the school. She had to tell her dad about it.
Her dad comes in the evening, Tanu tells all the mishaps to him and cries again. Her dad pacifies her and tells her that everything will be okay and she will love her new school! They do all the maths problems and clear all her doubts but Tanu still hates the big , grey school. It's 9 by the time all of her homework is done, and soon her mom puts her to sleep and she is again drifting away into her cozy dreams.

30th January, 2008

it's 8:oo A.M. , Class 12th children are streaming out of the school buses, swarming like bees! Chattering to her best friend of 11 years , Tanu also gets down from the Bus route no. 13, her fun place for the past 12 years. She goes inside her school, yes the big grey building and glances around, with misty eyes. Her School. Her second home for the past 12 years. She is so ashamed of herself for hating the place on her first day! She slowly walks inside, painfully aware that this is the last time that she is going inside, as a student of this place, in her school uniform. She goes to the auditorium, where the farewell is being held.. She is given a school mug with the school motto on it, (which is her most prized possession till date), a candle, and her class picture. She stands in her class line, for the last assembly she's ever gonna attend.. The assembly, which she loathed the whole of her school life! She wants it to go on and on, and never end, as that will ensure that she is still a school kid, and not grown up! The school song now starts playing in the background, and Tanu and her friends join in with much enthusiasm (as if it's the last time she's getting to sing in her whole life!) ! The farewell ends, it's time for refreshments, and everyone now starts scrambling out for the McD Burger..and fries! Tanu slowly drags herself, out of the Auditorium, looking longingly at her school, with tears in eyes. She looks at the endless rows of corridors, the place for uncountable mischiefs, the immaculately manicured gardens, from where she used to steal the dog flowers when she was a kid, the library, her temple, her refuge, the huge playground, where she had to run like a maniac , if she was punished.., the basketball courts, without which she would still be a "thiggu"..the swings..the teachers..who scolded her for god knows what all..and bursts out. She cannot take the pain of leaving the School..Her home..
She does not eat the burger, as she is still choking with tears..and slowly, very slowly, with baby steps, steps put of her protective shield, her school to face the big, damn world outside..

She glances back, for the last time, bids goodbye, Au Revoir School, My Alma Mater. My Surrogate Mother.


Tanu is me, it's my pet name which is never used. :P
And the School here is My school, Somerville School , Noida, which made me everything I am today. I don't know how to repay the debt, this is my small way of expressing what I never did, never realised , in my 12 years in the prestigious, wonderful, amazing school. I can go on and on, about everything, but I am gonna stop..I love you School! Thank You for everything you did for me, a stupid girl, who hated you on her first day!








12 comments:

Ms.R. said...

aww sweeth thang! :D

CrAzY fReAk! said...

welcome :D

neeraj_only said...

oh!!! finally done reading.....

(Aaj ka din kharab .....today i will keep thinking about my past...lol )
i stopped many times thinking about my days....So many schools i had to change. Guess what , my "tribute" will go to many schools, eight in total (nursery+lkg+ukg+1-to-12th)

thanks to my dads transferable job , i kept on changing schools (quite painful experience most of the times).But got chance to know many new faces quite regularly.

#Side-effect : No childhood friend of mine :(

I this nostalgia is playing big time right now in my mind , can't control my emotions , i have to leave my college in one month.

from the day 1 in college i wanted to get college-days over, obviously i was quite unaware of the "interesting-times-ahead".

But many things we can't control. Before closing , one of my favourite dialogues.All good things have to end and and become "Yaadein".

cheers!!

mysterious gal said...

awww ....wow made me remember my school days....gosh i know how i hated getting up to go to school and yet how we all cried when left....those r most amazing moments one can ever have....we girls still wish we can go back and be carefree in school......loved ur post....thanks for making me remember my memories [:D]

CrAzY fReAk! said...

@ Neeraj

aww, m so sorry..! thnku so much,..i know , i have started liking college just now..but i miss school like crazy!
:|

@ Nabs
thnku :P :D i knowwwwwww...! <3 i miss skul! thnku :D

Riddhika said...

oo lala!! :P

CrAzY fReAk! said...

lol

Pretty Me!! said...

dnt bother dear.. we all hate going school :) it was eally a sweet write !! wat to say abt memories !!!

CrAzY fReAk! said...

nooo..i love skul! :P and THNX :D

IcE MaiDeN said...

awwwww..... tht was jus so awww grl!!.. made me think of my school, which was my fav hang out all 10 years!!. :) lovely lovely writeup. u inspired me to write abt my school!! :)

Lotsa Luv,
Annie. :)

IcE MaiDeN said...

n btw, i didnt cry at my farewell, half cz my school is jus across d street , i STILL visit my teachers sometimes, and half cz we all hada HUGE crying session on d last day we wore uniform to school. which was a day before farewell.. itna phoot phoot ke roi ki our teachers ahd to come console us.. :) :)

hehe.
Annie.

CrAzY fReAk! said...

@ Annie
our farewell is held in the uniforms only. Smart and Classy. :)
I visit skul too, but not that frequently, cuz it's a bit far. Miss skul so bloody badly, never had I ever thought! College is fun, but it can NEVER replace what skul was!!
*sob sob*