The best thing about Delhi/NCR is the sheer number of parks it offers. Even in a place like Gurgaon where people hardly ever have time to breathe there are beautiful gardens/ parks like the Leisure Valley Park in Sector 29 and Biodiversity park in Sector 56. Since S and me have decided to keep our weight under check walking was the first thing that came to our mind. I am sure we won’t regret this decision because there is nothing like the experience of pleasant breeze brushing against our faces. After many failed attempts we finally went for a morning walk today. To my surprise the parking lot was full and there were so many cars parked along the road. We are probably the last people to realize the pleasures of walking :P.. What amazed me more was amount of kids coming for a walk.. I guess its vacation time already!
If you ask me one thing that I miss most about my childhood days, then it definitely has to be summer holidays. I have often found myself reminiscing those lovely experiences I have had as a child. How I used to look forward to those 2 months of holidays that never seemed enough! Witha banker dad and mum having the luxury of taking 2 months off we never missed a chance to do something exciting during our summer vacations. The annual ritual of going to granny’s house in the village down south was never to be missed. The agenda used to be to go on a short LTC tour and spend the rest of our days in Kuthanoor, where my grandparents still live. All my cousins would gather every year and we used to have lots of fun. So many days, I recall running around the farms, the temple premises and village circuits in pursuit of the next great adventure. We would go to all old temples and research the story behind it:) We used to do pottery, make artifacts with bamboo leaves, baby coconuts and what not! We invented games like Jublice which was played with broken bangle pieces and “Terrorshots’ where we threw bombs made of clay on each other. We built our own mini kitchen, vessels made up of clay and a mud chulha. We would draw big rangolis in front our houses and make the annual quota of papads and Vadams/Karudams. We would fight and take turns to play the brick game in the handheld video game 😛
Every evening we would go to Arasalaru (A river in Kuthanoor) which would during summer and play in the sand. We would dig up small holes till we reached the water bed. We would bury each other knee deep into the sand try to free ourselves from it. We would collect shells and dried pine shoots, colour them up and gift it to each other. We would casually steal cucumbers and lady fingers from farms and eat them fresh and raw, take bath in village bore wells. While at home we would take bath bath in open since there were no bathrooms and used hand pumps or wells to pump water :). Can you believe I even tried to milking a cow once? 😀
Our summer holidays were always spent with our siblings and cousins,playing cricket, the legendary Daya kattam or Ludo (The one that Shakuni mama plays :P), eating matka kulfi/kucchi ice and of course, watching movies in VCR and Chandrakanta and Rangoli in Doordarshan! As if all this was not enough we used listen to the stories that our grandparents had to tell about the bygone days where they did not have TV or radio; why not even electricity. About how a giant snake once came into their house and how our mental sick relative once kidnapped my mother.
The breakfast wused to be pazhaidu or the leftover rice with the traditional Mavadu ( baby mango achar) and raw onions. Patti would sit in the middle hand all of us one morsel each, one by one. Later all girls would pluck flowers and make garlands while boys would try their hands on riding bullock carts or help out in other activities. We would all sit together and do our holiday homework, discuss each other’s curriculum including various topics With so many fun activities our vacations would end. We would bid each other a teary farewell and comeback to respective cities ready to face a fresh start.These memories from my childhood are inked and imprinted in my mind!
Ahh, what a nostalgic start to this week! However when I see kids in my apartment and nearby parks I often ponder how the times have changed! They seek pleasures in expensive toys, are happy staying at home playing computer games. I don’t know if I should pity them or not. As parents we can buy Kinect, Wii’s to our kids but will we be able to take them to a village and give them an opportunity to experience all that we did? It makes me think that our childhood was a lot better than the kids of today. Agreed we did not have all comforts that they enjoy but we had umpteen things to do make us happy. We did not rely on computers and electronic gadgets for our happiness. We had cousins to pay with, stories to tell each other! Who has time to visit relatives these days, for months I mean?
May be I am overreacting! Maybe kids will have fun no matter what! Our parents did and so did our grandparents. Maybe the future generations will also have their own tales to tell! Its just that the definition of enjoyment differs from one generation to another.
So tell me pals, what is your best childhood memory?
Do you also a story to share?
Image Courtsey: Google Images