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Friday, December 13, 2013

St.Xaviers Patna - Old Boys Reunion - Day 2

The party at Chanakya on Day One ended pretty close to midnight and by the time most of us got to our homes/hotel rooms it was close to 1.00 am. So it was decided we deserved to sleep till late on Sunday morning have a leisurely break fast and then meet up at St.Xavier's School around 11.00 am. The entry into our school after a gap of 48 long years was nostalgic and my mind was filled with so many fond memories.We old boys were all wearing our blue striped school ties and we felt so proud of this.
We took a tour of the school campus around the old school buildings, to the hand ball courts,  the old auditorium, swimming pool,  basketball & tennis courts. Alas some of the important landmarks like the huge tamarind tree and the shuffle boards had vanished.The aviary which used to house little birds and small pet animals had also been dismantled. The swimming pool was in a state of disuse and the tennis court in a poor state of maintenance. A new additional block has been constructed opposite to the old blocks basically with an idea of expanding and adding more students.The school had over the years also switched syllabus from Senior Cambridge to Matriculation. Also the exclusive boys school had now become co-ed.
Once every one arrived we started the days proceedings with light refreshments - the traditional bun,butter,chops & chips accompanied by soft drinks and beer/vodka/gin etc. The camaraderie,fellowship and the bonhomie continued to overflow.We had a super entertainment session involving both men and ladies. Men were asked to pick up folded slips of paper from a basket and then they had to do what ever was written in the slips - stand one one leg for one minute, bleat, moo, meow, cluck, bark,dance,hum a tune till it was identified,sing a song,jump, skip,propose to a girl at a date.......The list went on. Surprisingly some of the men were a bit shy to perform and the women had a jolly good time.Next we had a musical session of Antakshari, Here the men scored heavily. Majority of the old Bollywood numbers were belted out by Vinay Sinha who is gifted with a wonderful melodious voice. Binny Kocchar too sportingly contributed to many songs.Then it was time for lunch. The Chinese menu of noodles,rice,sweet & sour vegetables,garlic chicken was delicious.The lunch concluded with mouth watering gajar ka halwa and yummy kulfi/ice cream. After lunch we walked through the polished corridors of the school, went into our old classrooms,trekked upstairs to see the dorm, barged in to the Principals Office...........................
Amarendra & G.P.Singh posing in front of the school gate
We enter St.Xaviers. I ( Ramanathan) am entering the portals of the school after 48 years. It was nostalgic and I was flooded with many fond memories.
The main school block was unchanged - the Tamarind tree had disappeared & so were the shuffling boards.
Posing in front of the swimming pool Left to Right: Ramanathan, Abhai Choudhary,G.P.Singh,Vinay Sinha,Chandrasekhar,Prashant Dutt & Rai Shivaji Nath.
Looks like exam time with the invigilators providing extra sheets.


Beans
Buns

Chips

Chops
Relaxed and having a Teta a tete ! The ladies provided the entertainment - the men danced to their tunes.Some stood on one leg, others bleated like lambs and clucked like hens. Some were asked to hum tunes while others danced. In the end there was an entertaining Antakshari - where Vinay Sinha took the strangle hold belting out old tunes in quick succession.
Enjoying the meal of Butter,Bread, Beans,Chops & Chips. There was plenty of Beer & Vodka also going around.
The Stair case leading to the first floor - where the dorm was situated.
The corridor with mirror finish polished marble floor on the ground floor. The classrooms & the furniture were virtually unchanged. This was a trip down the memory lane.
The majestic main entrance doors with stained glass clicked from the inside.

Ramanathan & Rai Shivaji Nath posing with the Vice Principal.
The School Motto - The plaque was in the Principals room.
The water taps and cement trough remained unchanged
This awesome B & W was found hanging outside the Principals Office. The Rev.Father Murphy (our Principal during the 60's) shaking hands with the then Governor of Bihar Dr.Zakir Husain.

44 comments:

  1. must have been something to return after so many years. i love that you kept and wore your ties.

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    1. TWG: No no these were not the old ones - but new ties that were made available to us on Day 1 during registration :)

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  2. Beans, buns, chips, chops... Sounds like it was so much fun already. Always love the feeling of warmth and camaraderie of dear old friends. :)

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  3. And a great time was had by all ! Thanks for sharing this Ram.....it's funny how the school food looks strangely familiar!

    Happy weekend,
    Ruby

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  4. What a nostalgic experience..! Thanks for bringing it to us virtually..!

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  5. What a nice re-union! Nice to meet up with your old school friends. Happy weekend!

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  6. So many beautiful memories Ram :) Glad you all decided to have a reunion and rekindled the nostalgia. Beautiful post .

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  7. Reunions are wonderful and take us back to special times. Once I did not think they were worth bothering with but have since learned they bring back only the good memories.

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  8. Reunions are a great experience. Looks like everyone had a fun time and made even more good memories.

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  9. Superb post. Just loved it.

    http://picsonia.blogspot.com

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  10. Hi...
    Enjoyed reading abt your reunion. that must have been a fantastic meet.

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  11. I can see your enjoyment while writing about your reunion itself! Whenever you come across this post, you will relive this day for many years! When is the next meet?!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Sandhya.These are ever green memories. The next meet is scheduled in 2015 !

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  12. the food sounds delicious and I enjoyed your trip down memory lane. I noticed the plague is in English, and also the sign on the front of the school is in English. I have not attended our 50 year reunion because i was miserable in school and had no desire to remember it...your memories were enjoyable

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    Replies
    1. English is the common unifying language India which has 28 States, 28 languages and hundreds of sub languages. Plus this school was being run by English Missionaries.

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  13. must have been memorable for you RK...happy for u!

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  14. How fun to get together with your friends from school. Looks and sounds like everyone had a wonderful time. :)

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  15. It seems a pleasant and nice reunion!
    Thanks for sharing these lovely moments.

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  16. Thanks, Ram, for stopping by our blog! I've been gone for awhile doing other things but will be posting sporadically in the near future...

    This is a super post. You really captured the essence of the event; the energy and the joy of renewing old acquaintances and "going home" again! It's a lovely school and I can imagine it was great fun to be a student there.

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  17. Such a special reunion - looks like you all had a great time of shared memories! Have a super week too - and a pleasant ending of the year!

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  18. You had a wonderful time with your old friends.

    Have a very Merry Christmas, and I wish you all the best in the New Year, too!

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  19. Almost felt I was going back in time. Can imagine what a wonderful experience it was. Very nice pictures.

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  20. Hello...just somehow stumbled upon this space..and feltnice, seeing these images of a batch gettogether...the school pics..nmade me too really nostagic of our school days...

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  21. This is what Pradeep Mahtha commented by e-mail:
    Dear Ram,& Hello Everyone. Thanks. The school still looks in great shape. For those of us who were in the hostel, the staircase besides it's normal use,were also used for prayers before retiring to the dorms at night. Min Sen and Pedro( Peter Dias) will remember the polished corridor for the peeing spree one night on their way out at 10p.m!!
    Fr. Murphy truly looks unbelievable. The school photos & all you guys remind me of an article which Arun Sharan had shared last year: "Jaane Kahan Gaye Woh Din".
    Thanks once again Ram. You had sent it earlier also. Looking at it again makes the wait for 2015 worth it's while.

    Warm Regards.

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  22. And this what Parimal Dayal had to say: Ram
    We often discuss that if you hadn't come for the re-union, there wouldn't
    be any record of the detailed way in which you recorded the events. We'll ensure that you are also there in 2015, whatever it takes. All the best. Keep intouch.
    Pari & Muku

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  23. Ashok Varma had this to say :Thanks for all your good wishes and the effort put in to record the events with such an absorbing content and for its value as keepsake. Ramnathan is simply super in all he does and look at his humility------proud to be your contemporary-- please accept our greetings and good wishes for the best to you and your loved ones so that you keep going and spreading cheer in 2014 and always---- ashok varma

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  24. Prem Sinha had this to say: Hey Rama,
    Terrific pictures!I have a confession to make. A lot of the faces are vaguely familiar, but I am damned if I can put a name to each of them. Can someone help out? Please? Now I know that I must attend the next reunion.Gentlemen, tell me what I can do to help. I will definitely attend - whatever time or place! Warm regards, Prem

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  25. Jitendra Sahai stated thus: Dear Ram, Fantastic pictures. Thanks a lot. Now, thinking ahead of 2015. Jyoti

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  26. Pradeep Mahtha made this comment earlier by e-mail: Dear Rama,
    I wasn't there in person, but the pictures gave me flavour of what you blessed souls would have felt, many of you meeting after 48 years-- the polished school corridor,the handball court, beaming craggy faces of friends, their wives and a host of memories of days gone by. My wife Poonam and I are eagerly looking forward to 2015.Here is what we look like.
    Warm Regards and thank you Rama babua.

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  27. Naveen Kshatriya: Hi Ram,
    Great job done. I loved the pictures and the video. Its hugely nostalgic and enjoyable , more so for those of us who missed the event.Look fwd to 2015..we should make it earlier in the year than later ,in my view Rgds

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  28. Pradeep Gogte said this: Hi, Guys,
    I'm sure all of you had a truly memorable weekend and I really missed being there. In fact, my wife and I were all set to travel but something came up quite suddenly and we had to drop the plan. It must have been a treat to reconnect after 48 long years (in most cases) and I can imagine what I have missed. l shall certainly not miss the 2015 event, whenever and wherever it happens! Ram has done a wonderful job of capturing the fun, food and frolic of the reunion! Congrats!
    Now that this event has passed into history, there's a new one happening just about 48 hours from now, here in Aamchi Mumbai!
    On Nov 28, Thursday, evening, Bhupati, Jyoti and I are meeting at about 7pm at a club in Shivaji Park, Dadar, over drinks and dinner. Just in case any of you are in Mumbai that evening, please let me know (call me on 9920930275, or by e-mail), so that we will also expect you.

    With best regards,

    Pradeep Gogte

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  29. Bhupati Pandey stated thus: He Rama.
    Kitte sundar photos!!!
    Hum nahi the aapke saath par un dinon man se wahan ki taswiren le rahe the baithe baithe.
    Really missed the grand fare but Inshaallah, 2015 isse bhi gaaraad hoga.
    Hats off.Brig.Shivaji & co.for re kindeling the innocent lights at this stage of life. Hum to phir wahin pahuch gaye.
    Regards & best wishes.
    Bpp

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  30. Santu Rohatgi had this to say: Hello Rama:

    It is great to get connected. I saw the pictures but unfortunately I could not recognize any one. I guess we have all grown older. Once a date has been finalized, please let me know so that I can fit it in my schedule. We Bania business people. Old habits are hard to break.
    Look forward to hearing from you.I am in Tampa, Florida, USA
    My Cell number is 813-340-4423
    My email: Santu.Rohatgi@Rissol.com
    Send me your Mobile Number. I called Abahy Choudhary today.
    Regards and all the best,

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  31. Dear Rama:
    Thank you so much. Later during the day, I would look at the photographs. I was surprised that 20 of us are no more. Just curious, could you tell me who they are. So sorry to hear that.
    Yes, I remember you. Seems like you must be the tallest person in the picture. Where do you live now and what do you do.I will plan to send you a picture later this week.
    I talked to Dr Abhay yesterday. If you could, I would love to get your cell number , and then I will call you.
    Take care and all the best.Did you know that no one in India knows me by Swatantra. They all know me by Santu. So here in USA, I decided to keep that name.

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  32. Shoeb Ahmed: Hi Ram,
    Your photographic skills hv taken everybody by storm.Bravo.
    Keep it up.
    Regards
    Shoeb

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  33. Amarendra Singh: Hi Friends
    Every good thing comes to an end & so did our mini REUNION 56 – 65. We had a good gathering of 25 batch mates with about 8 to 10 ladies joining us for various functions. Every one thoroughly enjoyed the get together & there was loud clamour for making this an yearly event !!
    People have been taking photographs of various occasions, esp Ram, & I request them to circulate a few.
    Homage was also paid to 20 batch mates who have left for their Heavenly Abode. During GOLDEN JUBLEE REUNION we plan to invite their spouses. People who are in contact with them can circulate their mail IDs / tele Nos.
    Finally, special thanks to those who helped in organizing & making this a memorable event --- Rai Shivaji Nath, Brajeshwar Sharma, Indra Jeet Singh & Binny Kochhar.
    I would also like to mention some names who had / have volunteerly taken various responsibilities towards success of this mission --- Dr Eqbal Hussain, Dr Akhouri Sinha & Dr Abhai Choudhary.
    Few who were very active on the internet during planning stage but could not make it, also deserve our thanks, as it was their initial positive response which helped to crystelise this Reunion --- Naveen Kshatriya , Naveen Kaul, Pradeep Gogte, Arun Sharan & Pradeep Mahtha. Thank you every body.

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  34. Hi Ram,
    What a grand reunion! You are so lucky to attend this grand event!!
    Some of my classmates from college recently got together, which I couldn't unfortunately join, but I am hoping to, if there is an opportunity in the future.

    I love the water tap setup. I am reminded of Thayir Saadham and Elumichangaa Oorugai for lunch, washing the tiffin container in such a sink, filling the container with the water and drinking it. Good ole days, indeed!

    Thoroughly enjoyed this post!

    Have a Beautiful day!!
    Peace :)

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  35. You must have enjoyed a lot meeting your frineds after 48 years.. Why the ladies are sitting separately? :-)

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  36. great Sir! awesome post! made a bit nostalgic as the corridor pic reminded me of my own school tym! :D

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  37. blessings
    namaste
    glad you have good memories.
    i don't see the roti on the menu, where is the roti?

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  38. Hello Ram,

    Fabulous reunion. A wonderful chance to meet old friends and share the good old days. The school looks fantastic. You must be very proud to be an alumni of this this premier institution.

    I think this school is name after St.Francis Xavier, who is the patron Saint of Goa and whose mortal remains are kept in a silver casket in Bom Jesus Basilica in Goa.

    Best wishes

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