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Yesterday once more

A Gopal, Aug 17 2017, 1:22 IST
(First row, from left) Meiyappan (second), the author (seventh), Sridharan, Manivannan and Joshwa Edward. (Second row, from left) Thamaraikannan, Ashok Kumar, Zainauladin, Venugopal (fifth) and Aaron Jabaraj (seventh).

(First row, from left) Meiyappan (second), the author (seventh), Sridharan, Manivannan and Joshwa Edward. (Second row, from left) Thamaraikannan, Ashok Kumar, Zainauladin, Venugopal (fifth) and Aaron Jabaraj (seventh).

This is a photograph taken in 1982 at Methodist Mission High School, Dharmaraja Koil Street, near Shivajinagar. I was in 9th standard then.

I vividly remember those blissful days. My friends and I would walk home after school as most of us lived nearby. We belonged to the lower middle-class families, so we never owned a bicycle. We all stayed in rented houses.

Bangalore was an excellent city with less pollution and it felt like we were staying in a hill station. We didn‘t really need to visit Ooty or Kodaikanal. I did not even know what is Summer as we never had humidity in the city.

Cricket wasn’t something we particularly liked. We used to play some local games instead. Our teachers too contributed to making school a memorable experience. The discipline and punctuality that was taught to us made a huge impact on our lives. It was always memorable and powerful to listen to the morning prayer, and missing that was considered a sin back then! Since I studied in a mission school, it was a Christian prayer. But many of us were Hindus and Muslims. However, we felt great unity while reciting the morning prayer.

We completed our 10th standard in 1983 and moved to different schools for higher studies. I never had an opportunity to meet all my friends, expect maybe one or two who were in constant touch with me. Thanks to WhatsApp, I got in touch with some people after more than 30 years.

We decided to meet and have a get together at Country Club last year.

I was surprised to see all my friends had grown very old. Most of us are above 50 years and settled in the city with few of them now CEOs of their own companies. I work for the Government of India Ministry in Bengaluru.

During our meet, we decided to organise a small facilitation ceremony for some of our teachers as a mark of respect to them for helping us reach this level. It was their hard work that helped us reach where we are today.

(The author can be contacted at 25585417)

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