Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Rajan, Rameshs and Anantha...

In April, B.Rajan was found attending a friend's family function to which I was also invited. The same old Rajan smile! When KoLi Master (our tall PT Master who was often hunting with our Mysore Maharaja was always fond of narrating to the whole school during the drill session that was once involved in a fight with a tiger showing his handicapped left shoulder which he could not use normally) found him not doing the drill in CKC, he used to lift him up holding those ears as a punishment! Everybody remembers that. Look at that ear now! Rajan was also in SVHS later.
In August, following KoLi Ramesh's intimation, I got to contact two chaps who were in Sarada Vilas High School. BN Ramesh and KR Ramesh. BNR (our chemistry teacher B.Narasanga Rao's son, is in Gujarat. He was a good debater in his school days and brought many laurels to our school. When I spoke to him over phone, he still had that clarity in speech!

One Ananthapadmanabha who stumbled upon this blog responded to which I corresponded and within a week we were facing each other in front of his home and later in it! He had come down from busy Bangalore and called. He remembers me from the Tennis-ball-cricket activity in 1975 from his crystal-clear memory and the ease with which he recollected so many things/events from those days on the field and at school was a joy to listen, when we together met KR Ramesh in his home over some fine-flavoured tea. Ananth was in CKC's Kannada medium as well whereas KRR was in another section of SVHS.

KoLi Ramesh is now very passionate in building fuel-effecient hot water boilers and ovens. He was kind enough to build one in my home two years ago. It was his 125th project. Indeed it is saving much fuel while giving hot water. The steel boiler was fabricated by another senior CKC mate Ramaswamy. KoLi is watching the finished job and had just fired to test it.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Some more visits from old mates

This week, there have been a couple of meetings with old class and school mates. First Vasanth Kumar surprised me with a phone call and asked me to identify the voice which I could not. He said he was visiting me that evening. He was in Mysore on vacation. Along with him and doing the same but for some very important duty was Zakir who too joined him in the visit - I must say that he never fails whenever he lands in Mysore. See last photo.

Our classmate Geeta had invited me to attend her father's 80th birthday gathering. There came also, one Vathsala who was not our classmate but an acquaintance with my family in the same locality. She was attending, taking time off from busy Bangalore. Meera also brought her to our house the next evening.

The funniness of Meera's expression is caught in the unintentional timing of this photo!

Geeta enjoys a joke with her old classmate who seemed to be meeting each other after a long while. What's in the box there?

I asked them not to pose for the picture, yet they did!

When I was mid way through this, Srinivas (another old mate) called me from Bangalore to inform the loss of his 85-year old father 3 days ago.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Srinivas does a Zakir

After the "Two Rajas", almost like a hat-trick, it was G.R. Srinivas ~ renown to his later friends as Shandilya prefixed by Srinivas or just plain~ who stood at the doorstep without a hint. Him coming all the way from half way round the earth and then 90 miles from Bangalore, as he does most of the time, is just plain thrill. (Doffing my hat at this sustained affection). As I said earlier, Zakir does this - suddenly coming in at the most unexpected time of the year - also without flashing a clue beforehand - and showing himself in person.

Srinivas has been one of my very earliest friends and classmates. Our contacts had been disconnected as I had lost his whereabouts many years back. His NY Greeting card to my familiar address renewed it after his Delhi days after a gap of many years. E-mails replaced our 'snail mail' correspondence after that and I feel good continuity has been maintained. He will agree that he is a reluctant responder. But that does not matter and I've never minded it, because it is his heart that matters and that is what brings him from thousands of miles away. This time it was a nice surprise! Somehow he seemed to 'know' I'd be at home.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Visits by the two "Rajas"

End of December means vacation time for most of us as that is the right time to laze off using some saved up leave at work. Climate too in Mysore is at its salubrious best during that time with a little bit of that pleasant nip in the cool air. The two Rajas knew that was the best time to return to their old city in which they grew up and studied.

One Raja calls me to inform that he was touring Mysore 'next week' with his family (of four). Sounds as if he was traveling a thousand miles! He has flown or traveled thousands of miles in directions other than Mysore in the few years gone by. It was time for him to show his children the Mysore he had seen. He was returning after many years!

From where? Only from Bangalore! Just 90 miles away. The children were now grown up. Time had flown past and his son was standing taller than him and he had not shown Mysore to them! That is how time has escaped right below the nose of Rajaram. His job responsibility had made Mysore a far off destination! All said and done he made it after probably umpteen cancellations at the n'th moments.

(The clock up there has been stopped deliberately)

The other Raja has visited Mysore on a few occasions in the past. His surprise call when he was already on the outskirts was a real thrill. He was coming from erstwhile Madras. He does not e-mail often or almost 'not at all', but uses the telephone as a rule and preference! He is somewhat like Zakir who comes all the way from a small country called Brunei and stands in front of my door like a bolt from the blue! This Raja came with family (of 3) the old neighbour and school senior Srinivas and nephews too. How I wish Rajagopal had timed his visit with the other Raja! They were only Sundays apart. You can see that CKC-days look still bubbling in Gopi (this is what we call him) as if to remind his classmates his 6th std days when Sr.Prudentia had nicknamed (wrongly) as 'Cunning Fox'. Nobody knows the reason. May be during an English lesson that a fox was featured we do not recollect. Gopi has failed miserably to live up to his nickname.

Srinivas in red and Gopi in spotless white flank me in this picture. White has become Gopi's favourite in recent times (just my observation).

It is mutual visits like these that keep the fire of the old friendship burning. Old classmate-friends are unique and so different than other friendships.