Swadesi band's missing tooth

These days, I see Singapore’s national flag everywhere. In the shops, parks, apartment balcony, along the road side, cabs and even on top of workstations. In the flag, red symbolizes universal brotherhood, white signifies purity. The crescent moon represents a young nation on the ascend. The five stars stands for the nation's ideals of democracy, peace, progress, justice and equality. Singapore celebrates its national day on 9th of august every year. There are theme songs and national unity messages flashed everywhere. This made me miss the Independence Day back home.

I am not very patriotic to say. I love my country for sure. I have profound respect for innumerable things about it. But I don’t understand how a person born few thousand kilometres away becomes my enemy even in cricket. Anyway, coming to the point I actually miss the celebrations I had in school/college days. I remember dressing up in white, a paper flag neatly pinned to my pocket. I was in the band and ever year we sing "Thaayin manikodi” and” Jana gana mana" before and after the flag hoisting. And during my second year in Vivekananda college our band sang ARR’s”Thamizha thamiza" from Roja. That day early morning, I cycled my way from home in sterling to college in Mylapore.

On the way, I noticed the MRF show room (The iconic building which has a rotating MRF logo on the roof) completely blanketed by our national flag. Who said size doesn’t matter? The huge flag with bright crimson, green and white got my entire attention. I kept cycling while my head still glued to the flag. I came to sudden halt with shock. I have actually bumped onto a jeep parked by the side of the road. Not a normal one, but the Police Jeep (yea, with capital P and capital J). I must have woken up the constable behind the news paper. He started scolding in our intricate sundara Chennai slang. He blamed me for not concentrating on my job! He questioned whether I was drunk, and added that I won’t get paid if I were careless. I started cycling faster, scared and confused by the remark. I neither stopped to think nor looked back until I hit the college cycle stand.

While I was locking the cycle, I felt a blow on my shoulder. I screamed aloud and jumped. My voice echoed in the deserted corridor. That was my close friend who came to see me singing (yea people choose their own fate!). "Hey you look like a vannan (dry cleaner)" he smiled tapping the big bag of dhotis which I brought for singers of the band. Like a person who took the first fall of roller coaster my expression changed from fear to laughter in nanoseconds. A bag full of dhotis at the rear end and being dressed in one must have made me look like a worker to the constable!

The event kept playing on my head and I was warned couple of times for giggling during the rehearsals. I bit my tongue and starred at oily head of a singer in the front row. As weird as it seems, it actually helped me from laughing on the stage. We finished the Roja song, and vande mataram with decent applause and a whistle (must be the fate chooser).

A couple of boring speeches and flag hoisting followed. It was then time to sing the final song, National Anthem. I started singing and randomly eyed the audience. I spotted my friend with wicked smile. He winked at me and mimicked "a drycleaner beating the cloth” action. I bent down immediately, with a hand on my mouth like I am going to throw up and start laughing uncontrollably. One down on the second row the group photo then would have looked like mouth with a missing tooth!

p.s: Happy Raksha Bandhan to everyone :)

Comments

Prats said…
Beautifully written....Reminds me I would pin a flag on my shirt this 15th Aug...Just to relive the old days and doing little things which mattered :-)
//I actually miss the celebrations I had in school/college days.//
I've never missed an independence day in my life as I've been in Schools to celebrate the feel of the day always.....Still I feel the same as I felt many years back when I was in school. It's different!
athivas said…
I remember Independence day and republic day celebrations every year. Oru chief guest, oru dance, oru drill(ithula sometimes pyramid vera).....Colorful days those were!!
ohh i totally understand how Singapore must be looking now..
Independence days bring back such fond memories.. very nice write up.. btw my husband is also from Vivekananda Coll
LOL!! I don't know how you managed to stifle your laughter - I for sure as hell would have died laughing on the stage and making a big fool of myself!! Was hilarious to visualize the whole scene you described!
Srivats said…
@ Prats

//Reminds me I would pin a flag on my shirt this 15th Aug...Just to relive the old days and doing little things which mattered :-)//

Very inspiring, :) keep it up!!
Srivats said…
@ Aruna,

//I've never missed an independence day in my life as I've been in Schools to celebrate the feel of the day always.....Still I feel the same as I felt many years back when I was in school. It's different!//

Lucky you :) Once I get to go to the school of my niece on Independence day. It brought back all the memmories, of white canvas show - painted :) and neatly combed hair morning.. sigh :)
Srivats said…
@ Athivas

//I remember Independence day and republic day celebrations every year. Oru chief guest, oru dance, oru drill(ithula sometimes pyramid vera).....Colorful days those were!!//

Oh the drill, dance!! gosh i forgot about it and it would be some patriotic song (duh.. what am i thinkin) from the recent or old film . hehe. I remember this " nalla perai vaanga vendum pillaigaley" or " sangey muzhangu " typical!! every year. hehe yet colorful for sure
Srivats said…
@A Journey called life

//btw my husband is also from Vivekananda Coll
//

oh super.. he also studied in the same school hehe. Its not fair to call it collage u see, we just had a school without uniform.
Srivats said…
@thethoughtfultrain

//LOL!! I don't know how you managed to stifle your laughter - I for sure as hell would have died laughing on the stage and making a big fool of myself!! Was hilarious to visualize the whole scene you described! //

haha the tongue actually swollen from my biting and I had hard time eating lunch that day hehe.. I guess i also fooled myself, thanks to dosing professors none notices me bending down :) except for few students , but thats ok !
@sri- yeah yeah.. he calls it a school too.. so i can safely say he never went to coll.. only attended school all his life
R-ambam said…
Gud Read .. !
I have been taught that the tricolor flag had saffron in it
Too many people color it red instead :)
gils said…
nice writeup..u've a very personalised way of telling things...nice
Srivats said…
@ Journeycalledlife

//@sri- yeah yeah.. he calls it a school too.. so i can safely say he never went to coll.. only attended school all his life//

haha. so people would think u are very generous/good hearted to marry guy who have studied less haha
Srivats said…
@R-ambam

//I have been taught that the tricolor flag had saffron in it
Too many people color it red instead :)//

haha saffron dhaan othukkaren, evlo per kandu pidikaraangannu parpom :)
Srivats said…
@ gils
//nice writeup..u've a very personalised way of telling things...nice
//

Personal vishayam sollum bodhu personalised aa dhaan sollanumnu paavadai saamiyar solli erukkaar ;)
eyomer said…
rotfl this reminds me my days in school. entire school meets for morning prayer. very strict catholic school. and at the end it was national anthem. i assumed myself as bethoven and start waving my fingers like the way the conductors direct the orchestra. it was a wonderful feeling till my class teacher used cane on me. :-)
Srivats said…
@ Eyomer

// it was a wonderful feeling till my class teacher used cane on me. :-)//

Eppo use panna ulla potruvaanga :)
G3 said…
//One down on the second row the group photo then would have looked like mouth with a missing tooth!
//

Nalla comparison dhaan :)))

Ellarum sonna maadiri nice write up :D

Belated rakshabandhan wishes :)))
Srivats said…
Thanks G3

nalla sambaricheengala raksha bandhankkun ?

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