Down memory lane

Nostalgic occasion

Down memory lane

While they reminisced about the golden days of the past, they also made more precious memories to savour until they meet again.

From young, innocent boys and girls in the classroom and playground to dignified gentlemen and ladies who have made their mark in various spheres, they had indeed come a long way, so much so that some even had difficulty recognising each other. With great enthusiasm, the class of 1966 of Bishop Cotton Boys’ and Girls’ School travelled from across the globe to attend the 50th year reunion that was recently organised in the city.

Brigadier Ashok Kumar from the batch organised a welcome dinner at ASC Centre on Old Airport Road, followed by a dinner hosted by Vijay R Kirloskar at ITC Gardenia on the second day.

The organising committee for the event put their best foot forward in making it a truly memorable one. ‘A walk down memory lane’ was arranged in the boys and girls school along with a visit to some of their favourite haunts like ‘Koshy’s’ and ‘Jewel Box’. The old students had a good time chit-chatting about old Bangalore, ‘boarders’ and ‘day-scholars’ and various other interesting facets of their school life.

A coffee table book, with school photographs and anecdotes, was especially brought out on the occasion and gifted as memorabilia to everyone.

 The colourful cover, designed by a caricature artist, served as the perfect backdrop against which the old Cottonians got photographs clicked. Apart from catching up with each other and cracking jokes, many also shook a leg as saxophone player Raman presented music from the 60s and 70s.

Vijay Kirloskar, chairman of the organising committee, said, “Kiran Bhat helped with locating everyone and we’re happy that most of us were  able to make it to the reunion. We also invited three of our teachers — Mr Shankar, Mr Vaz and Mr Nainan.”

S Shivaram, who had been in the school since kindergarten, expressed, “Cotton’s was like home for us. It taught us many values like honesty, being fair and helping everyone. All of us treasured each other and there was no unnecessary leg-pulling. The school instilled in us a sense of discipline and we also accepted punishments without any arguments, which is a rarity today.”

Parab, who joined the institution in class nine, said that it was totally different from his school in Kolkata. “The focus at Cotton’s was on total development, something that helped us learn to mix with different people. The reunion helped to bring back many old memories, especially ‘settling scores’ behind the chapel and gorging on the ‘chikki’, popcorn and ‘samosa’ at the tuck shop.”

For Chitra, it was a poignant occasion to meet many old batchmates from the girls school and see those from the boys school after ages.

“Our teachers actually imparted to us ‘knowledge’ rather than ‘information’. It was a holistic education. I remember Ms Holder teaching us various lovely crafts, needlework and basketwork and I was also a part of the choir. We were even taught many Western dances by experienced teachers and these skills that I learnt take many by surprise even today!”

Janaki, another old student, remarked that it was pure nostalgia as they entered the portals of the school once again. “Suddenly, we were 50 years younger and there was a gush of memories. We also saw the tree in the middle of the quadrangle where, as kids, we were made to stand for punishment. The school has changed a lot now with more buildings and less open spaces. The reunion has been like a roller coaster ride of emotions and I am glad that all of us have been able to reconnect.”

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