When you send out a query to the universe, you can be certain you will get an answer or things will happen mysteriously by some divine intervention.
I am a regular participant in the yearly alumni gathering at our school, but every time I went I met only a few of my classmates, not more than 3 or 4 at the most. On 26th Jan 2009, I was frankly very doubtful that our batch may not be able to organize the function next year. (I was keeping my fingers crossed and wished the person luck… whoever would be involved… poor guy.)
I neither had the intention nor the time to get involved in organizing the function as I was not even sure that I will be in Delhi… But there was something else in store for me… a beautiful journey and a remarkable experience… no words to thank god for the opportunity given.
My journey to being actively getting involved in the 25th year Silver Jubilee of our 1985 batch started interestingly in Mussoorie on June 13th, 2009. The weather was lovely, cool wind flowing and I was telling my children (both are studying in MIS) about my experience in Nainital during our school trip and how they should learn to identify a plant “Bichhoo Booti” — a shrub found in the lower reaches of the Himalayan mountains. The leaves of this shrub cause an acute burning and Itching sensation when it comes In contact with human skin. I did not tell them what we did in Nainital with this plant!
We sat down for having lunch at the Sona Rupa Restaurant when I saw someone after 25 years… and the words came out of the blue “Sanjeev Maheshwari”… and they asked ‘What papa!! And I told them that I am sure the person sitting on that table is an old classmate, now knowing this my kids were more excited than me and they did not let me finish my food and forced me to get up and accompanied me to this table… I Just said ‘Sanjeev Maheshwari’ and the reply from the other end… Perth… Perth Sharma!! What a feeling! I can’t describe or put It into words – We hugged, met and exchanged phone nos so that we could later catch up in Delhi.
Once back in Delhi, Sanjeev rightly contacted me and invited me to a gathering of our other batch mates who were in touch with him. We met at DLF Gymkhana and played a game of recognizing… I was able to get most of the names but the one name I enjoyed saying was “Sund..Sund Mund Mohanty”. I swear I never knew his name as Mr. Surendra Nath Mohanty – he was always Sund or Sundu to us and for the girls he was Sund Mund…
This meeting triggered some very old and fond memories of our school days. Time flies so fast — we never realize this as we are caught up in our day-to day struggles. The meeting was indeed a great experience in itself. They all were looking like uncles but from their eyes they were still boyish and very easy to recognize. The same jovial and naughty eyes we saw in our school times. It is indeed very surprising that my emotions or their emotions had not changed even after so many years.
Then sometime in mid-July came the letter from Mothers Blossoms that they wanted to meet 3 representatives from our batch to discuss work regarding the Annual Alumni Reunion. We had a meeting amongst ourselves and choose 3 members to represent… Viresh Goel — As he has been coming regularly for the school reunion, he knows a lot of our batchmates and is very close to teachers too as he stayed in school campus, Sanjeev Maheshwari — He has the same face, studied from nursery till 12th in MIS and is loved by everyone (girls included), and me – Perth Sharma — who was active in games while in school, and now active on the computer and thus the core team was constituted.
We started from Initial 5-6 members and then got down to finding our batch mates by using all resources. Thanks to facebook and the popular sites like batchmates.com and classmates.com we managed to find more and more of our long lost friends. With each meeting and each new old classmate joining the group of ‘MIS 85 BATCH’ from to 16 to 26 to 56… the journey was fantastic.
We had several meetings to the run up and made Sanjeev’s office as our meeting point. The meetings would start on a serious note; lack of trust at times, different Ideas, minor fights and tiffs but the best part was that we would invariably end up with much laughter and remembering our school days with much merriment, food and drinks. Whenever in between our long lost friends from overseas (Priya Jaikumar, Simi Khanujo, Rajat Mittel, Rajiv Lalwani, Johny Rajinder Mehra, etc.) came, we organized a mini reunion and the fun and laughter continued.
Now the D day is on our heads and for the first time some signs of nervousness with last minute meetings with the caterer, inviting teachers personally, collection of souvenirs, games for kids, and collection of funds – miles to go before we sleep. We are meeting everyday to ensure smooth co-ordination and to make everyone of us participate in this lifetime opportunity to be the host to our mentors – our treasured teachers.
One thing is for sure… we are confident that at heart we all are good and we have the divine blessings and surely the Alumni gathering and functions organized by the Batch of 85 will be a grand success.
Batch of 1985