Dates, margins and maps: Memories of my father : (2)
It was an incident when I was in class III. That time we were in Namrup. I was studying in an Assamese medium primary school in Namrup Tharmel. The school was almost 1KM from our home. We used to walk down to the school between the many houses of the colonies. Almost all the families used to know each other as it was a small township. The colonies were made according to the designations and different departments. I used to be very much unhappy to study in that school as my first education was in an English medium school in Digboi but then I was shifted to Namrup. There also I was first admitted in an English Medium School. The name of the school was Model School, in Namrup Fertilizer Limited areas which was far away from our Thermal Township. I do remember that once I cried like mad and dragged my mother along with me in her kitchen attire in the school bus to the school and kept on crying on the whole day, reason quite unknown to me. My small brother, two years younger than me was left alone with servant at home. After that fate full day my English medium schooling took a complete u-turn and as a result I had been admitted very next day in the Assamese Medium nearby school.
Nevertheless, time was running fast and very reluctantly I was trying to get adjusted in that school. With time and very caring teachers and friends I got along with the study though little resentment was always there. To be honest it was a kind of inferiority complex I used to suffer from very young age because I wanted to study in the best school of that locality but the reason of my Assamese medium schooling was none other than me only. I used to always argue with my father that he should have pulled me to the English School instead of taking the alternate easy way. My father tried to reason me that medium of schooling is immaterial and main thing is to be the topper in class always. The Board Exam in class X was to decide the intelligence of a student. Thus no matter where and in which medium I am studying but aim should be to top the board exam. Slowly I got busy with my study schedule and in the co-curricular activities. I was very much active in all the activities related with sports and music etc all my school life which was the result of the extra care taken then in Namrup Thermal Primary School.
Then, in class III we were to learn to draw the maps of Assam and India. My father used to draw and paint and me and my brother could also draw and paint nicely. It was an inborn talent we inherited from our father. But when I was trying to draw the maps of Assam and India it came out to be real bad. I used to be studious and always studied myself from the very early childhood days. Never parents used to look after what I was studying as I used to even top the class. But I had to go to my father to learn the map. It was a Sunday and after breakfast he got settled with me to accompany me in my little tryst with Geography.
He then, very simple way tried to teach me the two maps but in vain. I could not cope up to his speed and accuracy after several tries. He did not even use the eraser and in one stroke used to draw the maps. Then hell broke loose. He suddenly saw one of my other school copies. He got real angry as I was careless to put the margins alongside the borders and even did not write the dates. He took to check all my copies. He silently took my whole school bag and carried to the road. Then he threw the bag into the front drain. I did not even realised when he got angry. There was no sign of anger on his face and in his eyes. As it was a Sunday, all the children were outside along with their parents in our colony. Then my father made an official announcement of the ongoing events and my failures to my utmost surprise as he formerly never had done anything as such. I started crying on the road in front of all. Then he dragged me inside and asked me to draw the maps again instead of weeping on road. To my utter surprise, I drew it in one stroke without once using the erasers. Then he gave me big bear hug and took me outside and the second announcement for the day followed. That was about my achievement. He brought the school bag from the drain, to my good luck that was a dry drain because of winter season.
I learnt from that incidence, the lesson to put margins always with dates alongside. Now even all instances I write something, I never miss the margins and dates. Not to ever forget the accurate maps of India and Assam without ever using the eraser and particularly in one stroke always. Actual lesson of that particular winter Sunday was the importance of total focus and to be systematic in life whatever we do in all aspect.
Thank you father, for your innovative way to teach me a lot about life in one stroke on a winter Sunday!