That's a room scene some 16-17 years back. A 40 odd students, blue-white dresses, no faces but asynchronous pony tails surrounding on your left n right, and a plain faced teacher dictating. I thought I could recall her face, but no! not with out looking inside the almirah with the hope of finding few odd group pictures of those early days.
the period is almost over, and we got this 5 minutes break before another teacher gets in. kids get busy playing with chocks, drawing lines on the large blackboard, some of them writing their names in all possible handwritings, those resembling latests model walks, while some are out to drink water. few are on their benches itself, just trying to take their notebooks off the bag, Some are ready for the class-work and the rest of them are on their last few pages , filled with half finished drawings, noughts and crosses, and dots. I am first on the second bench, from the right corner. my latest "best" friend is sittin next to me and there are two other girls next to her. lower db whispers are on. and i have' been invited for a new class game.
what is it? you aint playing dots today?
nopes. this is a new one. you gotto tick one of these?
I see, what does this LM means?
thats the game na! you first tick one of these three, and we'll tell you.
I'am a second bencher due to two reasons. first, the first one doesnt have much of a privacy, second the girls with me dont want to sit on the first one. besides they dont want to sit on the second one even, but from the last. I dont like being second or third. I think M is same in all three abbreaviations. but I dont understand whats L, A, or C stands for. I' follow my mind. I tick the first one. the game for me is over.
The teacher seems, is almost in. some of the kids outside have just bumped in. the other two girls have ticked the second one. may be because they are sitting on the second bench right now. nice way of calculating haan! cant' blame anyone's mind ya?
OK! so what' does this mean?
the first one stands for "Love Marriage" second is "Arranged" and third is
you checked the first one, so you'll be having a love marriage.
what? I can't believe this.
NO NO! this is true, one of my didi's friend you know? she chose the the last one. she had a court marriage.
achcha! theek hai.
love marriage! so like the Mithun Chakraborty's movie recently i have seen, in which both hero and heroine had ran off, and then heroine's father had killed them both? thats the love and the marriage? I dont understand whats happening around me anymore. its all blurred. Oh Lord, I'm m so scared...back from school, I get fever, no one knows the reason. fever lasts a week. for the next 30 days, I am silent in the class. no one knows if I am in or out. I am lost in my world. love marriage, running, papa would kill me. My future isn't bright. how would I study if I'll run away? how'll I become a doctor? I don't want to die...
I am exploring yahoo messenger after a long long time today. I see that falling heart IM, reminds me of something. I click doodle then.
hey this is one of those class-room games naa?. lets play. I call my brother.
and look at that, I win, hurray!
Ever been this happy winning a dots game in your life?
when did you played it last? n where?
I am in 7th standard class-room again . Love marriage? hmm!. wow. really. thts great. who's scared? Well. I am not. perhaps my dad is?
July 29th. 2008
P.S. Just thought of adding a few words after reading all the comments i got so far on this particular post. first of all thank you all for visiting and adding your precious thoughts and experiences. It seems the emphasis got stuck only on to the lighter side of the article, like reminding us of our school days, but the other dimensional edge, which I was meaning to pass through, didn't get its much share of attention. Since only One visitor could figure out "how a little child could get traumatized just by the result of a silly class-room games".
Children, as innocent they are, tend to believe all whatever is told to them. what they see, what they hear, consequences of those sometimes, are rather tough to handle for both the elders/parents/and children themselves. Not sure, if anything could help, but to know how sensitive your child is, and how positive you build his/her outlook towards the life, and how nicely he could handle the changes in his life (read belief).
On the lighter side, though we are grown up now, but we still believe it. don't we? just because we want to?
My overnight stint of designing the front-page of my website is over. and I can look forward to the pending assignments, but while i take this little break before getting into thy businesses, another jungle of thoughts, blows from the west. Its gonna be little hard for me to concentrate so let me pour it out and this time well with some character representations just like the characters in my story of ABCDs, american based confused desiies...
So whats this fuzz bout ABCDs? well hard to get until your're really one of 'em. Yes, I to do my titbits of jumping east n west.. but I am yet to be the part of it and dont really come with that parcel. ( I just keep $s thats it ;)) but what really comes is ...
knwledge.. like those who never read the indian constitution would stun you with their baisc knowledge of the californian state policies,
cars.. well why complain you dont have roads in here,
nightlife - whats your favourite pick-up line?,
long drives - 400 miles in all 12 directions,
hobbies - parking lot full on with trucks and boats attached,
extending working hours - u can see green bulbs of sametime at 4'AM in the morning and 100 mails in your inbox, ...communities, walmart, and ...well..well.. this list is long with a ? Yup.. the big question mark.
Hmm.. if you could ever mind you're NRI collegue explaining you the signalling systems on SFO roads and from how many angles it'd click your pictures and send in to you in envelope while you break a signal. or one friend of yours buying an camery or accord and calling your little ALTO an AUTO. I happend to stay with a couple of "friends" of mine for 3-4 weeks, as they landed me a helping hand with my staying problem, well they were too busy to help me find a niche place. while me and another girl who flew from NC could cook, there was this lady, wife of a cisco employee, trained in Taj, Bglre who used to come for cooking some 3-4 dishes with rate like some $45-50 for 2 hours. this was considering, when you had the vegitable arranged, and if you could help her cut the vegis the she might fry some more. this is one weeks food with the readymade rice and cooked chapatis from indian stores.
for her bad luck, I did help her cut the vegitable once and she never showed up again. I was too fast for her :(
Get-togethers are part of singles/married and amongs the co-workers apart from regular dinings and luncheons. afternoon planning, a quick trip to the safeway on the way to walmart, and back home and your party is ready to rore. whats more, if only singles, head away to the pubs, and its just desi's all around messing if not doing anything else. the objective is to scan figures and come back. well no more luck.. did watch that movie "american chai" sometime back? not that weird too.. but alrighty, sunday is not far. and you're back to the little masterhead and in to the machine world...
quick get-aways and trips around and per-say your'e adventurous. you got a lot activities out there. it is costly, so what!, every trip to walmart costs you a minimum 40 bucks... and the proud indian-stores, charge you triple the indian price.
So what so confusing about being a ABCD, is that you live two lives as in one , but is that something exceptional?. well while you switch between the metros in india itself you're life changes. then what makes these ABCDs that specifics. forget the indian attire of NRIs and how the real state treats them, the attitude is the most alluring factor which make them confuse?
there is no two way communications, expect yourself to listen and only listen and not to be heard... well what do you know about america? what do you know about the world? life? politics, cars... another topic.. global warming...never talk about how you drive? the quick round wouldnt match the speed in miles car is moving and the only thing you'd remember at the end of it is you dont know driving. some time you spend in that state ..and you' know the long lasting friendship set in india is ready to expire...
Go to a trip, better being away from the apple i-phone cum gps ones'. some stint with ABCDR thats the restur..since they might not understand the local names of the same indian veges and you might feel you're sitting in an ethiopians' eating the most commons of them all. take it if you're worst in ordering.. and before you arrive and get back to the office mails. the latest flash on the desktop is the xls, taxes included. come to office and it might turn out easier to communicate to your american boss then your desi lead. you dont understand his accent. and besides all this I am thinking I can understand, why am I still labelled confused?