Life, The Universe and Pune

Monday, March 01, 2004

Between the ages 5-7, I did not like going to school at all….all I wanted was an excuse to stay at home…..however I was not the type who could come up with excuses that convinced Ma… started of as a typical weekday, the only difference being I was down with an upset stomach…….in spite of that Ma insisted that I go to school……I remember it was a Thursday because Papa was at home and he came along with Ma in the lunch break with some ‘dahi bhat’.

I kept telling Ma that I was not feeling well and I wanted to go home, but she would not listen…….after the lunch break was over, I wearily walked back to the classroom……I felt so bad that I was not on my way home with Ma and Papa……the moment everyone settled down in class, I put my head down and in a few minutes I was sobbing like I had suffered this big loss…..and so some kid goes, “Teacher, Puneri is crying!!!!”….so she shouts out from her desk, “Puneri, what’s the matter?” and the I blurted out the first ailemt I could think of and shouted back midst tears, “Teacher, my throat is paining!!!!”…..and continued sobbing…..

Before I knew it a call had been made to my folks, my bag was packed and I was dispatched to the school office and was instructed to wait for Ma because she would be on her way…….my joy knew no bounds and this sick kid who, just a while back, looked like he was suffering from some big ailment ,suddenly looked like he had struck gold……Ma and Papa came and kept questioning me on the way back about my throat ache…..all I had to say in reply was “ My whole throat is hurting”…fearing an attack of the flu or laryngitis or tonsils, I am pretty sure Ma must have taken me to Dr. Shirole’s clinic and got my examined head to toe (Paranoid that she, considering I am the only kid)……for the record I loved going to see Dr. Shirole because he had so many cycles for the kids who visited his clinic and to top it off he always had ‘shirkhandachya golya’ for all the kids…….

To be able to pull this off, opened a whole new world for me and in the next couple of years I was able to pull off the ‘ my stomach is hurting’ routine quite often… the extent that this one time my Chacha came to pick me up with medicine, in the hope that I would have it in the school office and feel better and get back to attending classes…..and just a few minutes before he arrived, Matthew Sir walked into the school office and after he found out that I was in the office waiting to be picked up because my stomach was hurting….he looked at me with a smile and said… “I know you are lying. Your stomach does not really hurt. All you want to do is get home”……I guess my million dollar smile gave it away…

One helluva brat, I was (sorry ….am)....lekin....garva se kaho, hum nahi sudhrenge