Suddenly my eyes opened, it was 5:00 in the evening. My eyes sparkled with my beaming face, which was as dull as dishwater just before a couple of hours. Nobody woke me up, not the alarm not even mumma but madness did. Mumma was still in her dreams so was I, but with my open eyes that were glaring mumma constantly just to fool myself that she was still in her dreams. Making efforts to subtly escape the bed so that mumma didn’t notice me, I stepped out of the room. But I always wonder how this superwoman could notice me even in her deep sleep( this was easily reflected in her conversations with papa over the evening chai). I drank a glass of water, the very first point in the instruction manual penned by mumma. Grabbing my bat under my arms here I stood determined in my closed alley with my friends in front of their gates. Though all used to there on time, sometimes ringing bells and calling friends “ aunty, gaurav ko bhej do” was difficult task…..not everyone used to be warm, sometimes rebuking, criticism, and moral lectures were the price we had to pay to rescue our friends…….
“ beta gaurav, karan bula rha hai, jao khel aoo “ one aunty used to address.
But the other would say “beta, himashu ki tabyat shi nhi hai”, as if I don’t know how Himanshu was.
Another one would instruct “shaam hone se pehla na aya to papa ko bta dungi”, but she was not the only one to tell. This used to be the turning point of everyone’s life every day.
This was usually the way our evening used to get started. I am sure that we all must have become nostalgic till now, so let us dig deeper and look at the problems we used to face after stepping out, with our reactions on it …….
who would bring the ball?
“abe contri kr leta hai”, “mera bat tha mein nhi laonga ball”, “lucky bhaiya aj paisa nhi hai app le ao na pleaseeee”
who would be the captain?
“abe en dono ko bana deta hai vaisa bhi enko koi lena nhi wala apni team mein”
where would be the pitch made?
“yr, mera ghr ka bhar mat banana mummy maregi pechli baar he light fodi the”, “mera papa ghr pr hai yr”, “oye tera ghr last mein hai asani hogi wicket banane mein aur fir ane jane ki dikkat bhi nhi”
who will bring the ball?
“yr tu jaa na vo aunty bahut datti hai”, “nhi bhai vo uncle bahut khadoos hai”, “yr vo aunty ball nhi deti”, “yr vo aunty sedha mummy ko btati hai”
Apart from all this, always there used to be a rebellious boy in the group who had the power to argue with martinet aunt or uncle. His crankiness sometimes helped us to bring the ball back but landed us in trouble many times.
Our deadly rules that were so implicit that sometimes we used to think why international matches do not hold them….
first ball would be the try ball
one tip out(ek tappa out)
direct shot to somebody’s house would be out
whoever would loose the ball would bring the ball
if it would cross this line four runs would be awarded and direct shot to this point would be a six
Sometimes if the umpire is in your favour or is your friend then it would be a double jackpot for you because he would never give LBW out and he would also cheat while making run-out decisions, declaring decisions in your favour.
Remember, how you fooled that small kid?
“Bhaiya, mujhe bhi khila lo na, please”
“but tu late ho gya, yash, team pehla s ban chuki hai”
“chal aisa kr tu ball uthana jab kahin bhi jaye too”
But in hope that one day he will get promoted to our team as a player, he used to agree.
But the bash was not always used be to be too smooth. Sometimes, it used to get disturbed by the group of monkeys, storm and rain, and every time by our exams. The number of players used to be the clear indicator of the days left to the exam.
As soon as the clock ticks 7:00 pm, we could easily listen to blaring sounds……..
“ saat baj gaye jaldi aa padhna bhi hai”
“jaldi na aya to papa ko bata dungi” ( we all know the repercussions, right?)
“tution wale sir a gaye, jaldi aja”
“homework nhi krna kya”
“garmi bahut hai bemar padh jayega”
But our reactions used to be the same everytime “aya mumma, bas do min”.
Meanwhile, we all know when used to be our 2 mins end and how we would find a way to escape bashing at our homes.That was always our secret so that we can boost about that in our friend’s circle.
In spite of facing myriads problems, the one thing that never dissipated was our love for the sport. Though there were other games also, cricket used to be our first choice from trump cards to video games. Dhoni and Sachin were everybody’s favourite. Despite falling miserably at copying the signature step of our favourite player, we would never get disheartened and try it all-day wholeheartedly. The matches used to be the discussion topics in our classrooms, auto, rickshaws, and even in tuition.
Cricket was just not the sport but was life, emotion and much more…..