Monday, February 1, 2010

Losing Chunks.

Last night I dreamt of my kindergarten school. I saw I was walking down 8B more while I ran into this woman who knew me when I was 2, who taught me the difference between red and blue and between a circle and a square, among other things. “Mary Aunty” we used to call her. I saw Mary Aunty in my sleep-in a cotton sari and a big bindi, and she took me to my old school. I saw the dimly lit room which had colourful soft boards on all the walls. I saw the mounds of plasticine that were moulded into being pink elephants and green ducks. I walked around barefeet feeling the coldness of the ground where I learnt how to walk straight and I think I saw the green wooden merry-go-round too.

Having woken up from sleep, I called up my mother to ask her if the school still stands down that road in Jadavpur. She said it shut down a long time back.

It’s funny how we are growing old everyday, not by blowing off candles but by these little losses. The other day J.D. Salinger passed away and I felt I lost a big chunk of my growing up with him. I remembered my school leaving diary and what someone I totally love, had written. She wrote, “I always thought I was the catcher, not realizing that it was you who has been catching me all through.” Holden Caulfield has been a part of my growing up, he opened me up to a magic that only works once. With magic of this sort, the rabbit gets pulled out of the hat only once and you forever remember that ephemeral moment when the white gloved hand of the magician pulls a smiling rabbit out of his red ribbon lined black hat. You try and hold on to that moment of disbelief forever, because you know that, that is going to be the only time you will see anything of that sort ever happen.

“We are losing all our childhoods”, I said.
“It all has to go someday”, you replied.

I believe you. But I’m holding onto my moments of magic.

13 comments:

Karthik Purushothaman said...

Plasticine again. :)

I've never read Salinger. But you did remind me of Miss Christine Fox, my kindergarten teacher. Anglo-Indian, she's supposed to have loved me, as I'm told by my aunt. Reminds me of my aunt who took me to school today, whose calls I don't attend much because she keeps asking how I am, and I guess I'm scared to say I don't know.

Childhood doesn't have to go. Even if it did, it just takes a little bit of resurrection to get it back. A couple of teardrops and a little smile.

storyteller said...

Even though it certainly does have to all go one day, we look back at our childhood as this cocoon we want to escape to.Somehow, the anger, confusion or sorrow of adult life appears to be more 'real' and does not have a quick fix.Holding onto your moment of magic is a wise thing,you'll need it.We all will.

purplesilt said...

You know i realize as i grow old...there is so little of even those things that we take for granted that we ought to get up straight that life's passing by every single moment!
I went back to my old school a year back and it stood exactly as it..only it didn't look towering enough anymore.
I often dream of my old school. That place has a strange presence in the subliminal world for my psyche..only I have no way of contacting it first hand anymore.
It must only live out of my memories.

Rahul Saha said...

I'm sure I've said this before but even though your'e young only once you can be immature forever.

Magically Bored said...

Lovely post. We all grew up with Holden, and while many of us don't identify with him any longer (as in, we've grown out of that teen angst), he was still a major part of our adolescent lives.
RIP Salinger. And thanks to him, we had such a realistic character to identify with, and to turn to.

Neel said...

your prose is magical bedatri. It reminded me of....

" Here, then, is a great mystery. For you who also love the little prince, and for me, nothing in the universe can be the same if somewhere, we do not know where, a sheep that we never saw has--yes or no?--eaten a rose . . .

Look up at the sky. Ask yourselves: is it yes or no? Has the sheep eaten the flower? And you will see how everything changes . . .

And no grown-up will ever understand that this is a matter of so much importance! "

shut up n write! said...

Wow its so full of emos...it brings me tears....:(

n all I'd say....

Oh shall I hav to say you goodbye?
With pieces of memoirs
All settled neatly
Which now seems like a fairytale.

Oh is it easier to say a goodbye?

@ neel ya ya it reminds me of little prince too...luvd it soo mch!!!!

Anindita said...

We all grow up...but there's always the child hidden somewhere in the depths of our adulthood....

Aruni RC said...

truly said. the magic of childhood fades away despite the best of our efforts to retain it. and later in the gathering dusk we're left to brood and clutch futiley at something that has now passed away for good.

Dream Baron said...

nice post! like the idea of parts of us literally fading away and new parts emerging-really distant and quaint..

Shreyasi Ghosh said...

You went to Rainbow School???? We must have fought over the swing/slip at least once then!! I remember Mary Aunty,Pallavi Aunty and Big Aunty(the principal)

little boxes said...

@shreyasi: yes i did,even told arijita about it :)
i remember Mary Aunty and Mitra Aunty.

Shreyasi Ghosh said...

Who was Mitra Aunty? The principal? I am blogrolling you.