Thursday, January 27, 2011

Golconda High School - An Outing With Some Special People

Yesterday I watched Golconda High School at Prasad's Imax with Mrs. Jayanthi Jaisimha, who was my Chief Guest when 'The Mn Within' was first launched, Vivek Jaisimha my captain and friend for many years at MCC and the Ranji Trophy and Mona Jaisimha, Vivek's wife and another of my staunchest supporters especially when it comes to my creative forays. I owe much of my cricketing success to the Jaisimha's, Vidyuth in particular for always backing me and staying with me, Uncle (Mr. M.L. Jaisimha) who in the way he lived his life taught us so many things about the game and about life, Aunty who has always treated all of us as her own children for about 25 years now and Vivek who was always accessible and sympathetic and who made our transition from league cricket to first class cricket easy.

The Jaisimha family has always had a special place in my heart because of the way they took us all into their home and their hearts right from the time we were 15 years old. It was Vidyuth who, as he always has done, backed me fully when we, as South Zone Under 15 players were discussing what we would do after we pass out of school. I remember us both strolling  around the lovely turf ground in what was Calcutta then, waiting for the rain affected match in 1982, and the surprise on his face when I said I might not play any more because I did not have any team after my tenth class at school. Vidyuth quickly fixed me up to play for MCC, then one of the prize sides in the AI league which only had 14 of the best teams - the banks, HBCC, DBCC, SCR, LPG were some of the teams I can recollect. The standard was quite high with about 70% players having played Ranji Trophy in that bunch or on the verge of it. In that standard of cricket, under stalwarts and forceful personalities that the world acknowledged like MLJ, I stepped on the next year to learn cricket "the way it should be played". Much of my learning from MLJ I have recounted earlier in my conribution to his biography (which I will share on my blog as well) but suffice to say my journey from a child to novice really happened there.

We'd fight matches with 9 players, draw against big teams on sheer tactical strength and will power and most of all we'd celebrate whether we won or lost. It was so much fun playing for MCC those days that I remember opposing teams that won the match look at us in envy as if we had won the game. That was the spirit of the game. We enjoyed it, we played hard, we were taught gamesmanship just as we learnt the importance of values, belief and sheer gumption. We upset some of the biggest teams in those three years, caused many skippers to resign, forced our way into the Ranji camp and almost pulled off a coup when, under Vivek, we stumbled at the final hurdle by the thinnest of margins on quotient.

When we beat Syndicate Bank, the star studded topper of the league then, the celebrations started at the MLJ household from the afternoon itself and carried on well into the night, Discussions, beer biryani, about fifty people going in and out of the house, music and Aunty never had anything to say except when things got out of control. She always treated all of us young cricketers as her own and deserves as much recognition for being there for us as any of the players because she had the right word, the right gesture to put us at ease. Venkatpathy, Azhar, Laxman, Noel and an endless list of cricketers have benefited from this family's love and advise just as we all had.

So it was very special for me to take them. Vidyuth and his wife Reetika, another staunch supporter of my creative forays, had already seen the movie (Vidyuth twice before). We watched loaded with popcorn and ice cream etc. I sat next to Vicky who enjoyed the movie just as Mona and Aunty did. I almost thought I'd have one seat vacant for Uncle as well, who would have approved of the movie (I'd give anything to see his expression after the movie), but decided not to do anything so dramatic. We sat down after the movie and had a cup of coffee at Ohri's discussing the movie. Shobhs and Anjali played the perfect hostesses.

Of course we were joined By Sreedhar N, our classmate from Engineering and MBA who came with his family, Shailendra, Seema and their lovely kids Aarushi and Anshuman, Subbi our good old friend from many years who joined us. I bumped into Subramanyam my classmate from OU Electrical who is now with PWC who came with his family, Dr. Rahguveer and his family and also bumped into Raghuveer from our St. Gabriel's days in Warangal at the theatre. All in all a very satisfying evening. And, of, the show was houseful as well which was highly satisfying as well!


Vidyuth Jaisimha said...

Super stuff , dont know how I missed this blog of yrs Harry

Vidyuth Jaisimha said...

Missed this blog---super stuff, brings back so many fond memories--Cheers

Harimohan said...

Yes Viddu, wonderful memories. It was completely crazy those few days when the movie first released and I was exhausted. Probably never mentioned this blog to you. I was quite surprised as reread it now - as much as you are.