Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Catching Up with Old Pals!

 On New Year's Day I met Ram, Subbu and Choudary over lunch. We had been pretty close during our engineering college days - 1984-88. Subbu went to the US first, Ram followed and they both live there still. Choudary went to Australia and returned and he is happily living in Hyderabad now. Was good to catch up and recall some mad moments. A question like 'So who was your first love?' threw up interesting answers from Subbu and Choudary (who were too self-obsessed to ask about us two who didn't really have any loves then anyway - but hey, they should have asked).

Choudary, me, Ram and Subbu - 2023

Let me see if I can find one from our 1984- 88 days.

Ram (right at the bottom in the middle), me (right behind him with my hands on his shoulders), Choudary (right behind me without his shirt) and Subbu (at far right without his shirt) We took this pic after a game of cricket. Others - Anand, Chandu, VK, Ali, Sunil, Raju, Sanjay

Ram was a topper, our gold medalist perhaps. He and I would watch an eclectic collection of movies - from totally mass Telugu movies to old classics like 'Professor' which we watched in Prashant. In his later years at college Ram hit the gym and became a really quick bowler and I wondered why I had not gone to the gym with him. He always looks us up when he visits - always warm and affectionate. A few years ago he brought his daughter Nithya who is Anjali's age. Gave him copies of all my books this time! 

Me (far corner), Raju, Ram (at the back in light blue shirt), Ali, Sanjay
, Vinod, Choudary and Subbu. This was in the canteen.

Subbu was an accomplished cricketer much before I came on the scene having played Under15 and Under 19 and was leading the gang of left arm spinners from our age group before Venkatapathi took over. He was highly competitive, had a tough action that would spin the ball a lot. He could bat well and scored a couple of hundreds for the college. We made all four University tours together (Vizag, Calicut, Bangalore and Madras) and played a lot more cricket together. Never a dull moment when Subbu is around. 

Choudary still remains the one everyone wants to meet with his unpredictable ways, his complete confidence in being himself. He was very good at academics too. Then he became the General Secretary of the College and did a wonderful job of it too organising a bunch of cultural and sporting events successfully. His Bullet, his jeep were popular then. That stint as GS did him a world of good and he finally came into his own - from the 14 year old I met first who had come from Ramagundam to the 21 year old engineering graduate was a long journey.

Always good meeting the gang. Ram is as affectionate and as transparent and loving as ever. Subbu as mischievous. Sanjay could not make it. Vinod is in the US, Raju with the state government and Ali in the Andamans. 

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