It is impossible to tell how my journey or your journey was starting from the 1st January 2018. It was an incredible journey of love, happiness, loss and sorrow. And when someone asks you. How was your 2018? We end up saying, “It was good”. We hardly describe the tumultuous ride we had for 365 1/4th days. The long hours we spent sleeping, working, eating, running, laughing and even crying. But we are the same person yet changed in so many ways. Shed are those shells we wore in that old year. And today standing on the threshold, we all are about to do the same. Who would have thought that my year would be like this or like that. And so many hopes and aspirations are seeded on the floor and we wait for their germination. Patience……
I have learnt so many things. Yes so many things. New experiences, new faces, new phases to become history and in my case his-story to her-story, my story.
The experience of teaching was by far the best. For the whole year I mothered myself. I became my mother for the whole year. And I certainly think I passed….
From waking up early in the morning, preparing breakfast and lunch; washing clothes to doing dishes, taking medicines at home to visiting doctors in the clinic; Carrying myself dressed as a teacher, helping myself sometimes with Kohl pencil or with some coloured lipstick to look mature. Getting on the school bus that took a long ride of like 45 mins to reach the school which now was my workplace and second home to the students, learning new things every single day.
The most tough part was when I was given the responsibility of class 8. The first time I entered the class, every one was silent even the wall. I could see few girls and boys all at around the age of 13-14. It was a tough task to be dealing with adolescents, I knew. I then began with my introduction and asked them to follow the same. Everyone looked shy and awkward, except the fact that they smiled looking at my face. Residing in North Bengal, with different features and colours than the majority of people in this region, students even asked me if I was a Chinese. I smiled and said, “I am from Darjeeling” and they understood immediately. It didn’t take much time to adjust their language with mine. They smiled till the class ended, even uttered some Nepali words.
Time passes and it passed, who can held Time’s running hand. Who can chase her everyday, who can meet her everyday. And Time yes it flies changing every constant thing.
With Time we became comfortable in the presence of each other in one single room. Change was constant except the walls that stared at us. I teaching, them listening, I scolding, them laughing, I uttering, them silent yet thinking. Sometimes they created nonsensical jokes, sometimes the same faces looked dull, something untold. I was strict especially with the boys. Still I opened the doors of my ears to listen to their unsung, unheard stories, giving suggestions when necessary.
They learned from me and I learnt from them. I noticed that the world was a galaxy of storytellers. I noticed the world was a little I and a big them. I noticed that I was just a small tiny fish with flesh and net caging around me, with big and large ‘Whale’ of stories swirling and waving around me, many of them decaying under the weight of brown dry mud, pebbles, bushes and trees, departing from the connections they built so far when the breathed. I wish if this snowy winter could freeze the year forever or even the infinite time, but no, it can’t… And surely we do not want the same season to cast it’s magic forever, because our genes are accustomed to the constant change, mutability, mortality, so on and so forth.
“If winter comes, can spring be far behind”. So with stream of memories knitted beautifully, not only me but everyone will be bidding FAREWELL to the year 2018 whose FAIR- WHALE of stories and storytellers somewhat modified and mutated our growth.