The day of August, 15th – entire nation is brimming with ‘patriotic’ energy. People are celebrating the spirit of freedom fanatically across the length and breadth of the country. The media are full of past, present and future information. A typical enthusiastic Independence day!
Every time I think of this day, I find myself wandering back to my school days, when I, all dressed up in white uniform would head to school, looking forward to a bunch of activities and return home early afternoon.
Though our teachers taught us the importance of this day, but, as a kid, all that I wished for was a chhutti on this ‘festival’, like we get one on other festivals like Holi and Diwali. But my wish never came true during my school days :(. Even though no academic work was done this day, still all the students and staff had to be present at the regular school time to celebrate our independence.
The arrival of Independence day was more fun than the day itself, as it was marked by the start of ‘zero’ period – an extra class every day at the end of normal schedule. Just like the Hogwarts’, We too had the four houses and they were all geared up for the D-day’s celebration. The parade was the crucial activity and majority of students were part of it. Other than the parade, various cultural activities like, folk dances, drama, group singing were the highlights for the day. The participants in these activities were either self-driven to participate or being asked by the respected caretaker teachers of the respective houses. Incidentally, nobody liked to participate in the parade because the practice sessions were conducted in hot afternoon after the school hours. Still, many of them were seen marching due to the reason that either they were too shy to participate in any cultural activity or they were the kind who thought so :P.
The Independence day would start with the usual assembling of students and staff for prayers, which was followed by Flag hoisting by father (Principal). Then there was the parade ; meanwhile, the participants of cultural programs get dressed up with makeup on. After an almost hour-full of parade, the paraders would sit on one side of the ground, taking rest and waiting for colorful performances. Each house would present its set of folk cultural programs, which everyone would cheerfully enjoy and gossip about for days.
Then comes the most awaited time – candy distribution. The students would jump up their place to collect as much candies as they can. After this, there is a prayer gathering again before finally heading to home. So, there we go, munching candies, singing songs, unaware of what is going on in politics, media or anywhere else on earth, just lost in our own wonderland. Sweet Childhood!