The Wonder Years

Old school and college ties can be very, very strong. After all, why shouldn't they be strong? Schools and colleges are the places where most of us began to discover ourselves with the help of teachers and our place in the world. It's one place that aside from our families at home firmly established our values, our ideas of how life should be lived and our concept of what a good education is.

Schools are also the place where we made the first good friends of our lives, where we indulged in masti and mischief, where we learned how much we are capable of achieving as well as our limitations as individuals. In other words, schools were the places where we grew up in front of our teachers. Since our schools occupy most of our lives before we become responsible, grown up people, it's also the place that made some very strong memories.

Nostalgia is surely a big factor in old school ties, especially at a time when you bump into a classmate and you cannot really recall his/her name as opposed to his/her nickname he/she had all through school. Obviously, there are shared memories. Nostalgia exists in various degrees. For people who haven't, or don't, keep in touch with batchmates beyond their social friends, nostalgia is what keeps the party going when they land up for an occasional reunion. To tell the truth, nostalgia often begins at the school itself, in the final year. There's just one exam left and then it'll dawn upon us that it'll be over. Which, after years of togetherness, can be unnerving. Memory collection becomes really important at this stage. Upto class IX, the full class is generally a divided lot but suddenly in class X, there is this tremendous unity because you realize that it's going to be over. So, the memories have to be maintained at any cost.

Our old school and college ties continue to bind because of our friends. Everyone would acknowledge the fact that the Internet has done much to make old school ties strong. I have no strong feelings for them, either way, though I did get a good education and was very fond of some of my teachers. But if you ask me what was so wonderful about school, I'd say without doubt that it was the friends I made there. One of my friends posted a photograph on Facebook taken before the Deepavali vacations in Class IX when there was a fancy dress competition and a party was organized to recreate that photograph and guess what, a lot of my classmates actually showed up.

Friendships are something that most of us would acknowledge after some thought. It is often difficult to separate the friendships from the school when the friendship happened because of the school. I personally believe that there are certain friendships which just cannot happen elsewhere but school. The school had certain values and ideas about life, people who went there shared those values and ideas of life. The moment someone tells me that he/she is from my school, there are ten questions I don't need to ask. The batch and the institution is also important. The batch is important since we grew up together, which in itself is a big bond. The institution is important because it provides the values you live by--and that's again a big bond that's established.

Shared values is another important value established during school years. They can often be very strong in themselves that age and generation have no meaning. Older people generally tend to have an automatic affection for--or at least a sense of responsibility towards--younger people from their old schools. The same is the case with memories; they come and give us happiness. They go away leaving us with nothing but sadness. When they come, we cherish them like the morning sun's beautiful rays. When they're no more we can do nothing but just miss those old days!! It's because of the old school ties that continue to bind us wherever we go since they are so strong.


Team 1 Dubai said…
Read more to write more. Good work. Let there be a great transition from paragraph to another till end.
You are right..nothing as memorable as those good old school days...
A New Beginning said…
sm said…
nothing is like good old days.
Akshay said…
@ Ramesh Etta: Thank you for giving the suggestion. Will definitely work on honing my writing skills.

@ Veena: Yes, indeed. I was feeling highly nostalgic about my school partially due to my mom was watching Taare Zameen Par on TV. In a way, the movie inspired this post.

@ Sana: Thanks so much for your feedback. Do keep writing in.

@ SM: Yes, certain memories are just too good to be erased.

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