Thursday, 12 July 2007

A Graduate's Essay on "My School"

My School - This mosaic image is made from a collection of 338 pictures. All the tiles used in this mosaic are pics from my 13 years of school life. Click and zoom into the mosaic and each individual tile will be decipherable; revealing a page of my life.

Jon Stock in his fortnightly column in The WEEK magazine wrote thus, "Never before has society had the means to travel back in time like this and try again. The internet may have made the world seem a smaller place, but it's also managing to concertina our private lives, allowing us to revisit parts of our past that should, perhaps, remain undisturbed. After all, if you're really happy, is there really a need to go back?"

Stock was concluding his article on the opportunity internet provided to make contact with our long lost crush(es). I too had one.. my school - Loyola School, Thiruvananthapuram. Never have had enough of it; and so still remains one.

This seems to be the season of blogging about Loyola. I have lost count on the number of blogs I came across on Loyola in the past few months. So why one more? The answer - each Loyolite saw a different Loyola. And before my memory falls to Alzheimer or some other such disease, let me put down my memories.

I wish to follow a different style here. The sentences or incidents will never be complete. This is more like a jig-saw puzzle. I'll describe a little, some pieces of the puzzle. Each piece will be complete in itself if you can colour it with visuals and sounds. Strain a bit more, exercise your memory cells a tad more, and you can be in it. Each piece also forms part of a bigger picture. Arrange them the way you want and see it the way you saw.

<||>"O God, our Lord and Creator; Help us to be good and to learn our lessons well; Teach us to know you and ourselves rightly".. twice a day - before morn and noon sessions

<||>A couple of steps and a small concrete platform in the middle of old junior school for making assembly speeches .. and in senior school had to give then addressing packed steps.. one of those moments for which I thank my parents for naming me with 'S' - rarely had I to give them as the list never reached 'S'

<||>The horse shoe shaped old junior school building.. old junior school staff room... Rajappan uncle's room.. Fr M.M. Thomas' Vice Principal office.. the two-door IVth standard class rooms.. running into them from the football ground after games periods.. <||>Sprinting to buses the moment the bell rings for end of day.. seats were scarce and the winner-takes-it-all only made the sprint faster.. cleaning the classroom after classes.. never really liked it coz my end-seat would have been usurped by the time I finish.. hurried through them fearing the buses might leave without me.. never bothered to do them in the senior school as no teacher kept tab

<||>12th std lunch break football games in the PT shed with a half-football size bladder

<||>Special assemblies.. readings from the Bible, Gita.. "Your response is, Lord hear our prayers".. Diwali crackers - the long chain of crackers tied between two trees.. blessing of the buses and classrooms at the start of each year

<||>Adrenaline pumping slogans during basketball matches.. "Are you ready for the magic.. YESSS... Then let the match begin".. "V-I-C-T-O-R-Y.. that's Loyola's battle cry".. Loyola-St Joseph matches.. "whisky brandy soda cup, we will win the BB cup"

<||>Fr Tayil, Fr. Mani Manimala, Fr. Kuruvilla Cherian, dear former Rector and his unique style of speaking

<||>"You are the worst batch I have come across in my 25 yrs of teaching"-Ponnama Ma'm in 7th standard

<||>Old UKG park where I played.. the concrete tubes acting as tunnels.. the merry-go-round, swings, slides, see-saws... white sand.. each day I used to come home with a load full of that sand in my shoes..

<||>Graduating to junior school park.. now swinging by standing on them.. the see-saws aren’t that smooth now.. but who cares

<||>"Is your father a carpenter?"..Titus sir used to ask us whenever we drummed our fingers on the old wooden desks

<||>UKG class rooms.. by the side of school day stage.. shifted to junior school and now back here again

<||>Science Exhibitions in the (undivided) Berchmans hall

This collage contains pics from my own collection plus a few unacknowledged pics from other Loyolites's Orkut albums. The center pic is taken from this year's school magazine - The Loyolite 2007. Click on collage to view in full size and quality

<||>All the excursions.. especially the 11th trip to Bangalore, Mysore, Ooty and Black Thunder.. and the 12th trip to Goa with Edassery father and Prabhu sir.. none in my batch can forget the train reservation fiasco and the platforms of Madgaon Rly. Station.. the bus breakdown during the 10th trip gave me my first Harry Potter book..

<||>TCS Quizzes.. shouting down other schools.. largest contingent always

<||>The old forest.. Dracula house.. interpreting and mystifying the writings and pictures on the walls inside it

<||>College hostel corridors and terrace.. has spent a few assembly periods there.. and got caught too, once

<||>The rare football/cricket matches in the hockey ground (where none have ever played hockey) when exams/classes happen for the remaining students

<||>Cardboard & paper-ball cricket matches in the tennis court (another misnomer ground) before terminal exams.. the very short boundaries and its own set of rules

<||>Shouts of "Happy Holidays" while leaving by bus on the last day of exams each term

<||>The python.. never knew its name was "Kaa" until Krishnachandran B wrote it in an obituary in the school mag (saw it again at then the love birds.. rabbits later.. (sources say there were monkeys in our school, once upon a time.. after reading the article on Abdul Uncle in this year’s school mag I think it must be true after all!!!)

<||>St Ignatius Day.. one of those days when our school alone gets a holiday..

<||>School Days.. hustle and bustle before the start.. students running around in make up.. tensed looking teachers checking whether everything is in place.. the school day drama.. "our" drama - "Silence of the Dead"

<||>Youth festivals.. 3 days of absolute fun and enjoyment.. really had enjoyed the competition and programmes.. still remember the recitations "O Captain, My Captain...".. "... into the valley of death, rode the six hundred..". and declamations. ".. I know not what bothers me.."..".. Friends, Romans, countrymen.." ..and house dances.. earlier there was a dance master who used to choreograph for all the houses.. the set of songs remained the same year after year.. only the house dancing to it changed

<||>The old sack-thick sleeveless house banyans.. they used to last pretty long..

<||>Numerous sip-ups while in my first years at school and the countless Fun-Oranges in my last years

<||>Sports day.. march pasts.. "this is the last and final call for the 100 metre dash.." PT, acrobatics and karate display.. tug-of-wars..

<||>"Demonstration for you, Command for me".. do i need to say who said this?

<||>Christmas celebrations.. decorating school buses and classrooms with balloons, colour papers and cards.. lucky dips and gift exchanges.. christmas party - initially they were in classrooms itself; later shifted to the open grounds and steps

<||>Farewell ceremony.. the whole class in "mundu".. group song by the class.. handing over of flags.. candle light ceremony.. in the evening playing the "last" football match only to come back few days later and play another one

<||>"Games" periods each week.. was the first thing I used to check when a new timetable is given each year.. loved the days that had these periods

<||>LaFest.. our LaFest- LaFest 2k2 with the tag line "just when you thought you had seen it all"..

Our LaFest budget - Rs 19, 990/-

15 schools, 1000+ students and 1 full day of fun - Priceless

<||>LaFest, School day, Sports Day, excursions, Youth Festivals - all these need pages of their own.. this post will just remind you that there was one.. fill it the way you saw

<||>School buses were notorious for their "noise".. many have told me, "You can say when a Loyola bus is coming, even from 1km away".. such was (and I hope it still is) the chatter we used to have.. always jam-packed.. when I joined there were 4 and when I left 6.. anyone remembers the colour-style of our old buses? white with a wavy stroke of sky-blue through the middle.. was really disappointed to see the buses painted in mute dark yellows one sudden morning

<||>The Chapel.. beautiful... the enchanting silence there, I really enjoy it.. our chapel is famous outside the school too, especially in CET (Coll of Engg, Tvm).. the First Friday Holy Masses... loved them simply because you get a period free if "sufficient" number of Catholics went

<||>Senior School Library.. hasn't really taken any books from there.. but can never forget the long chat sessions we had there.. Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys rarely stayed on the shelves.. towards my final years it was Tintin and Asterix..

The picture is too large for me to complete alone. I have left out many of the obvious pieces and have tried to describe some of the obscure ones. Complete the jig-saw with your comments.

The Last Ink-Drop : As for Jon Stock's question, if I was really happy about my present situ, would I have gone back? I am not and no Loyolite will ever be. This post is a testimony to that.

Cheer Loyola Sons


Syam said...

Aha glad i am to be the first to reply.
Absolutly marvellous collage up there chetta.

Sorry , but i did not like this new style, THAT MUCH
But here is something i could help noticing.....

To quote you...
||>All the excursions.. especially the 11th trip to Bangalore, Mysore, Ooty and Black Thunder.. and the 12th trip to Goa with Edassery father and Prabhu sir.. none in my batch can forget the train reservation fiasco and the platforms of Madgaon Rly. Station.. the bus breakdown during the 10th trip gave me my first Harry Potter book..

Our batch also went to Goa with prabhu sir(his last to goa)..and joseph uncle.. and guess what. the train was 12.5 hours late :D

Just couldt help noticing the similarities

And ive read ur blog before. heh its on the ARChieves:) i keep checking
nice writting.. keep it up
cheer loyola sons indded
im writing again . SOON :D

sreejith said...


knew there wud be takers for tht collage and mosaic

abt the style - well I was fed up with putting it the "nice and straight" way.. all the blogs on Loyola were full of adjectives and emotions.. and had the oft repeated incidents.. since all that has been covered well enough in other blogs I thought of mentioning some lesser remembered ones.. and that too without glam :-)

Anonymous said...

speechless.....choked by a thousand words....
luvd de style...a real beauty

sreejith said...


well.... :)

Thomas Sebastian said...

i like this style--random flashes of memories.....
"one of those moments for which I thank my parents for naming me with 'S' - rarely had I to give them as the list never reached 'S'"-- loved this one very much (i can empathize)

"Graduating to junior school park.. now swinging by standing on them" -- never saw that one in any other blog, good to see tht u cud put it in urs.(amazed by ur memory of these things)

All in all, nice post.

sreejith said...

thnx thomas.. it's the "small things" too tht make the whole experience a wonderful one.. and often least acknowledged

Jai said...

Too good daa too good . I would like to say that nothing that u jotted down seemed to have happened more than a day ago . Fresh an murderously nostalgic .. I miss all the action dude !

sreejith said...


thakku.. ethra naalaayaalum.. ethra dooreyayaalum.. ithokke orikallum marakaan okoola namukku..

the best days of my life...

BiBinhio said...

heh...i jst came across this post...a long time since it was written i c...

but i 4 1 absolutely loved this style... it brings back richer memories than wen everything is nice and orderly....

been thinking of writing a few things 4 a long time...nt getting sufficient time 2 put em down...
will do so soon...

and as syam said...the goa trip...2 reminiscent to ours.....

the collage and esp the mosaic were brilliant...

sreejith said...

@ vineeth..

thnx for the compliment..

it is always nice to record such things.. to go back again and again .. to relive those wonderful days.. so do find some time to record ur memories.. u'll love it :-)

Nitin SJ said...



I miss school already!!!

that's all!!

PS: pls allow comments from outside.....

sreejith said...

@ nitin

I am not surprised.. so can I expect a similar post from you :-)

BTW I disabled anonymous comments as I received a couple of them for some of my earlier posts. When I don't hide behind the curtains, I don't want anyone else to do it when voicing their opinions.
All have some sort of account with Google. So I don't see any problem for anyone who wishes to post a comment.

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