Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Fist day at school

Today was Agastya my grandson's first day at school. I mean school in India as he lives in the US and has come home for a couple of months.The past couple of days were spent trying to coax him to go to school, and the little three and half year old did play the game and promised to go. There was of course a shopping spree for bag, bottle, and lunch box all depicting his favourite cartoon character of the day: Chota Bheem!

The dreaded day dawned and there were tears and entreaties that would make any heart melt, most of all Nani's vulnerable one. But I held strong and took him to school scurrying away before the howls. But my brave boy settled down after a few tears and had a great time. After school ended there was of course the promised trip to the toy store.

First day at school brings many memories: the first day of my 2 daughters, Utpal's first day and funnily enough a long forgotten memory of my own first day at school in Paris. My elder daughter's first day at school was handled by her father as he was the one who dropped her at school after dropping me at my place of work. As far as I know she settled down fast setting the tone for an ace academic career. The younger one's first day or should I say days at school were a nightmare. Wails, and cries all handled by grand mom, grandad and the loving nanny who braved all weather and sat under a tree in front of the school.

Utpal's first day at boarding school was heart wrenching. He was just 4 and had lost everything: his mom, his home, his life. For me it was the toughest decision of my life. My heart wanted to keep the little fellow with me and smother him with love but reason told me otherwise. What was needed was to secure his future. I must admit that I took a long time recovering from that first day!

But strangely Agastya's first day at school brought back memories of another first day:mine! I had completely forgotten that episode, episode it was. We had just landed in Paris circa 1956 and I must have been around 4. My mom decided to put me in the public creche on rue Roquepine (I googled for it and realised it still existed). I howled and howled for days and my poor mom had no option but to take me out. Few days later she put me in a private school St Marie de Passy and the spoilt brat that I was took to it like a dream.

As life does come full circle as my younger daughter went to the smae school year slater in 1993!

I have lived a hell of a lot of first days at school.

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