1 min read

Fading Memory

Sunder And Sonati

A memory from my schooldays
Four decades ago and more
Faded, but resurrected today

Not content with listening
On a transistor radio
Hiding it under our desks
From the eagle eyes of
Father Netto (Remember him?)
Shankar Jayaram (Remember him anyone?) and I
Decide to go the whole hog

Father Netto used to lock the gates
On Test match days (Remember?)
So during Long Recess (Remember: 10.15?)
We scaled the wall
(Shankar lived next door to school: Remember?)
Went to his house
(What did his parents say?
His mother must have been there)
Changed out of our school uniforms
He was taller and bigger
So the shirt I borrowed
Hung dola bula on me
And made for Brabourne stadium (Remember?)
Sauntering past the gates of School
Confident in our non-uniform disguise

Gavaskar was scintillating
And Derek Parry
(So, did we do this on two days?)
A glorious hook by Parry
Stays in my memory
(Or was it Kallicharan?)
Whoever it was
Dropped his bat while hooking
And the crowd roared
And Shankar Jayaram
And I

At the end of the day's play
We walk out thrilled but
Ravenous, having missed lunch altogether
And head home
(Did I head to his home
To swap shirts?)
From the Wankhede stadium
(The match was played there
I am informed
So why is it
Brabourne in my head?)

And Shankar Jayaram?
Does he have this same memory?
Faded in the same places?
What did he tell his parents?
(What did I tell mine?)
When we returned
That day
Not from School
But from cricket?