The teacher is continuing with her monotonous singsong (no no… thats not an actual song… thats what she is teaching). All heads in the class are looking either at their watches our outside. Yes they are waiting for something… Something to let them free! Free from the torture of the class (though I am not sure if that is applicable for everyone)!!
And then goes the bell – TANG! TANG! TANG! Oh no no… Its not the electric bell, its the normal bell that hangs near the field!! Whoosh…!! The scene changes, most of the guys run out of the class, (we never cared what the teacher thought, did we?) few go up to her to ask doubts and the rest few just move closer to their friends to finish their “interpersonal exchanges”!
Yeah!!! This was the very familiar scene at my school, St. Xavier’s Collegiate School. It is 12:25 PM our lunch break. Our freedom. From the classes, teachers, fathers. A time to play football (well one can very well imagine how does the game turn out to be when you got more than 15 players on one side and 4 or 5 matches going on haphazardly in the same field). Yes, that is what the scene used to be, not forgetting our spoiled trousers due to the puddle in the field, nor the random footballs or cricket balls that used to speed at you all of a sudden out of nowhere… (even i know from personal experiences, that those balls could leave your head or arm or anything paining for a day or two).
The very spirit of the lunch break was in our school canteen, in Panditji’s samosas. Perhaps even a Rs. 100 samosa could never come close to the taste of the Rs. 3 samosas. These were delicacies without which perhaps every lunch break was incomplete. And you could find guys in classrooms strumming their guitars or to fight boredom a little boring chitchat about a boring topic!!
12:25 PM brought with itself a new vigour in us, a new life something which maybe I have been missing since Januray last year. Now that I am in an IIT, my lunch breaks are no more than just a “lunch” break. And I can be pretty sure that no other college would even come close to encompassing the youthfulness of a school’s lunch break. There are no “lunch break” football matches as such neither the fights behind the tiffins. Yea yea, I know we have all grown mature enough to be gentlemen and be well behaved. But still doesn’t our heart sometimes long to go back to those days…?? ( or atleast the lunch break part of them)
And whenever the time is 12:25 PM, my mind just sways to these memories and maybe that is why 12:25 PM is still so special to me…