I stayed in Haigbrown.
Haigbrown had its own sub communities. The Senior Dorm, the Junior Dorm and the Tiny-Tots dorm.
This was my school. Barnes school. This wasn't just my school, it was a community! A community where children and teachers came from all around India and many other countries. How I became a part of this community, is the best experience of my life, that I would like to share with you.
It was the 4th of June 2006
4:00 am. I was all ready wid my trunk and the kit bag and my tuck box..!!
I was not really ready for the new phase of life I was about to face.
Everythin' was goin' to be new.
No friends. No one from my family.
I wasn’t excited. I cried in my bed everynight. I would get up and look for my mom. And see my dorm mates and go off to sleep again with a heavy heart. Get up every mornin' with swollen eyes, sure to be ragged again, sure to miss my family.
I wouldn't like to brush, bathe and even wash clothes! I wanted to just sit and think about my family, or sleep, to get over the depression.
Waited under the tree that was right in front of the Main gate.
Waited to see my sister coming,
Waited to see her takin' me away form here.
Thought how beautiful it would be to go away form here and never come back!
Slowly I accepted the truth.
And decided to believe that these are going to be two small years of my huge life!
That are going to end soon.
I was sure someday I would walk out of this school,
Never lookin' back.
7th April 2010.
I was just out of the examination hall.
I just gave my last paper 'Economics'.
4 years have passed.
We had to pack up now.
Pack up forever.
I sat with the same old trunk.
1)Shoving in all the bedsheets and pillow covers (the only ones I was left with, most were robbed, some never came back from the laundry, some got stained so had to throw them away).
2)The only two pairs of uniforms, that now had autographs scribbled from everyone in my community.
3)Many candles that were lit on my friend's and my birthday cakes! (Gosh! One birthday, would mean, ONE weak prior arrangements. Talk to a day-scholar during the school hours, ask him/her to go to the bakery and check with all the flavours and prices of different cakes, he would come the next day, without the info, cause he/she forgot, 2nd day-he/she had important things to do, 3rd day-you get the info, 4th day-you remember you have to ask a day scholar for a birthday card too, 5th day-Ask he/she to get a card, 6th day-he/she went for a movie/wedding/doctor's check-up etc etc.7th day-you BEGG, 8th day-"HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!"
4)My mosquito net, that could now invite anything huge!
5)My bathroom slippers, out of which one was broken, all thanks to Rhea (my friend and an ex-bully, not exactly an ex-bully, but you can say a bully turned friend who still bullied me), who tried to shove her huge legs in my tiny slippers.
I couldn't believe, that just a day back, I was sittin' in the bathroom with my friends studying.
All thanks to the junior girls who asked 4 d lights off!
I had achieved soo much by now. "No regrets" I wouldn't say.
I had sumthin' to be proud of.
I was a house caption now!
But I had many fights. BAD ONES.
For the bucket under the geezer tap, for the cubicle in the bathroom, for the washing machine!
I barely know what I actually didn't fight for!
I remember starting with a new resolution of loosin' weight by excersin' every morning.
The girls smelled of garlic that they chewed every morning to lose weight!
6)Box-in which I stored eggs. I put eggs in my hair.
I trust all the beauticians with thier beauty tips in the magazines.
That didn't change the texture of my hair, but it got on the nerves of every single girl of my dorm!
Infact all the dorms.
7)My swimming costume. I regret I didn't swim in the swimming pool.
I was fat and too embarrassed to step inside the swimming pool!
I sat in 1 corner like an idiot watchin' my friends enjoyin'.
Thats not the only place you would see me sittin' in a corner.
There wer other places.
The athletics field and the Socials.
8)My part wears. Am going to miss the fashion shows in the girl's dorm, a night before the socials.
9)My 'Barnes school cap' that I wore during the march pasts every morning under the sun but upon the cool grass (+ the dragon flies).
10)The love letters I recieved, that were sent from the boy's school to the girl's school, by the help of the head boy and the head girl's help, passed with so much of risk, any teacher catches it, that day would be your 'DAY OF JUDGEMENT' and the dormitory would turn into an abattoir.
The Dinner bell rang while I was packing the stuff. I knew I was going to miss the orange and the pink sunsets, the die-hard punishments like, running towards the flagpost (a mile away from the mess), standing next to the bell, kneeling in the study hall, standing in the mess while eating (this one I hated the most).
Now that my trunk lies in 1 corner of my house.
I am even more scared to open it and take a look at the stuff.
More scared than the 1st day of the school.
And now the fear is because I know i am no longer with my friends.
with the bed, the study table, the old walls of the dormitory, the mud and the grass in the rains, the freezing cold winters, the burning hot summers, the building that would become monuments in the next 20 years!
YES! I belong to Barnes School, Devlali. Established in 1921 with 250 acres of land, situated on a plateau, with the world famous spot for leapord habitation, along with Devlali Air force station and the military camp.
I AM PROUD OF MY SCHOOL, and the community which I have belonged to once in my life, something I will never be able to erase from my brain.