I was just whiling away the time, suddenly something stuck my mind...this is the month of MAY!!! A decade and half ago this would have been the most awaited time in of the year.... the long summer vacation after the sort of feared "annual exams". Lucky for me and my bro though we had very good teachers at school and never really had to fear exams, ofcourse Maths was an exception for me then!!
The preparation for the month long vacation sometimes even more, rushed through at frantic pace with mom having to do all the packing with me and my bro playing around after the exams. The 4-5 hrs of 'Himsadri" a.k.a Simhadri train journey was always filled with, me and my bro fighting it out for the window seat, if we got only one. Our refree, my mom used to time it- say 20 mins each at window ...thinking about that now makes me smile at all the goofiness we used to display...shamelessly!! And yeah, pestering, begging n sometimes even threating (fake) mom to buy the 50ps samosas or those batani packs :) and all this started with a Frooti packet bought by dad & may be a Chandamama or Tinkle or Chacha Chaudhary ....At the end of the journey, we used to be excited at the prospect of taking the rickshaw ride as always back to my ammamma & tata's place going all along the banks of Godavari... just the very thought gives me goose bumps !!
Once home, we used to rush through the neighbourhood, to find who all from our gang of cousins made it there by then. My grandpa's side was a biiiiiig joint family, so in all there used to be close to 25-30 cousins around almost all within the same age group, that was excluding our pinnulu, mamus, babais, attas who are just a bit more elder than us only the number in age was the differentiator, they were hard to be picked out from us once the fun started!! RJY is quite a hot place in summers, and our elders did had quite a hard time restraining us from venturing into the sun--- to play!!
The day started quite late and the mornings were usually confined to the house and indoor games, few of which cannot be named due to embarassment :D ...we were treated to sumptuous breakfasts ranging from pesara punugulu, chapati, poori, dosa etc lunches n loads n loads of summer spls. Escaping on to the terrace along with cousins in the noon when elders were sleeping just to put our feet into the cooler and sometime flying kites, playing cricket before one of our moms used to get the stick (bettam) and everyone used to scurry for cover.... Due to sever heat everyone used to get blisters and in the evenings everyone used to be covered in BORO CALENDULA powder, resembling white scare crows!!
The wonderful time used to be while playing Housie, around 40 or more used to play until late night and yeah the winner had to buy for the rest!! Spending times at our cousins places, the eagerness to buy our new uniforms, shoes.. the Karachi sweets maan the hot hot pakodas, mudda kova, kakinadu Kaja... the rose milk center, Hanuman Temple, the DeviChowk temple, Ajanta Biryani, boat rides in Godavari wish I could get back to those days, with all my cousins!!
To be continued later........