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Trente-Trois Ans Apres

September 7, 2010
He came from a Tamil medium school,when he joined our school in the 7th Class. Naturally he was an object of ridicule and a butt of many jokes. He came back with a vengeance building up his vocabulary in a very short period of time. There were many words that I learnt from him. On one particularly rainy day when he came late to class and was quizzed by our class teacher the reason for being late, He said “I was delayed by the inclement weather”. I fell in love with the word inclement on that day. That is Annamalai.
He was the pillar of strength. The wall that we could hide behind in times of trouble. A voracious reader, a studious guy but very humble. This is Sampath for you.
He had droopy eyes as if he was dreaming all the time. I remember him whistling popular tunes. A very good badminton player or had pretension of being a good badminton player, I don’t remember which. Here I present ‘the owl’ Ramalingam. Maybe he had the pretensions of being the wise one too, with his bespectacled look.
She was the shy girl who would come to school with double plaited hair. She was one of the three girls in our class of 18. She came from a big joint family and there were about 10 of them, siblings and cousins coming from their house studying in different classes. In fact her cousin Chandrasekar was also in our class. That is Sampath Gowri.
Priya was a year senior to us in school. She is also my cousin.
We all met after 33 years. We belonged to a period where computers had not made a mark and even telephones were considered a luxury. Obviously we didn’t have Face book, Twitter or even e mails to stay connected. So after school when we went different ways we lost touch. All of us were trying to find the whereabouts of our friends in school. Then suddenly we all connected. It was as if we were looking in different directions and one fine day we all turned to face each other.
Annamalai is working in Bahrain as a Sales Manager for a construction Company
Sampath is the GM in BSNL in Chennai
Ramalingam is a free lance Finance Advisor in Chennai.
Sampath Gowri is married and settled in Chennai. Her husband works for ING Vysya Bank as the Vigilance & Fraud Investigation Manager.
Priya also is in Chennai working for a software company.
Last week the 6 of us met for dinner with our families. There were 17 of us. Our children in a stage we were when we last met. We had a great time regaling ourselves with all the pranks we played in school, about the teachers and their idiosyncrasies. It is funny how much we remembered and such minute details. I had with me the class photos right from the 7th class. We couldn’t help wondering how small and vulnerable we looked. We skyped (?) Chandrasekar, who is now a vascular surgeon in the UK. He promised that he will be here for the next year’s meet. We also spoke to our Class Teacher Mr. Daniel Thomas. He was very happy that we are meeting together. The most amazing thing is that he could remember our entire class in the order of the attendance register.
Sampath Gowri has 2 sons. The elder one’s name is Abhishek. So is mine. Her second son’s called Arvind. So is mine. How is that for co-incidences?
When we left that night we promised that the next time we have our annual meet we would have traced some more of our classmates. Ah, what wouldn’t I do to get back the good old days!!!
11 Comments leave one →
  1. September 7, 2010 10:52

    Hey Chinnen we had a great evening going down memory lane and trying to recollect faces, names, incidents…very inspiring too. Thanks to your initiative in putting the evening together. As school friends we shared different views. Today as parents we seem to share a lot of similar views !!! Talking to Mrs Kamala Jagadeesan was another highpoint. Must make it a point to call on her in Madurai. Hoping I can make a trip soon. This has planted a seed in my head now…must try to track my'll be great fun I'm sure…Ciao take care, catch up with you soon

  2. September 7, 2010 13:03

    Excellent!! Reunion with schoolmates is always exciting 🙂

  3. September 7, 2010 14:56

    How wonderful! Can imagine how exciting and memorable the meet-up with schoolmates must have been after so many years! 🙂

  4. September 7, 2010 17:58

    Fantastic! I envy you!! I am in the process of meeting up, at least virtually with a few old classmates, in different parts of India 🙂 Thanks to the blogging that has thrown up one's name on google :)Felt really good reading this. May more of you meet up the next time!

  5. September 7, 2010 17:59

    By the way, what exactly does the title mean? 🙂

  6. September 7, 2010 21:24

    @ Priya, I am sorry I couldn't include your photobut you can see it in FB@Pallu, Looking back it is the est part of one's life.@Deeps,You bet it was exciting.

  7. September 7, 2010 21:29

    @ Usha, I can understand you being envious. It was a top of the world feeling. The problem is very few of that generation is computer savvy.And the title means "33 years after" a take from Vingt Ans Apres (20 years after) Alexander Dumas' sequel to Three Muskeeters I think. Not sure. 🙂

  8. September 7, 2010 22:55

    Ahh WONDERFUL!!!! How lovely it is to meet your old classmates, friends! I echo Usha. I envy you.

  9. September 8, 2010 08:43

    @ Shail, Yes it was wonderful,to say the least. 🙂

  10. September 11, 2010 11:26

    As the uncle of Govind, I may also put in a word or two. I placed my daughter Priya in the school when it was launched, to frame an expression. There were only seven students in all. Govind came in next year, I think. My son Naresh also studied there, one year junior to Govind. Though the school did not have any presumption of being an old venerable institution, the quality of education, especially, for English was excellent. My son Naresh taught me how to speak good English. I am most grateful to the teachers, with whom I was quite friendly.Gaurav

  11. September 15, 2010 18:13

    I know all of you had a wonderful time. Because just last week I was part of a reunion of my Dad's class X batch. the best part is, some of them were in the same city, passing each other in one or the other place but never recognising each other 😛 We had a fun Onam lunch last Sunday, pookalam, onampattu, sadhya… manikkaveenamayan, kadalinakkere ponnore :)PS: Congrats on the tangy tuesday pic… I thought I had left a comment long back… seems to be missing from the list PSS: my blog url has changed!!

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