In the course of life, there are several things (even people) which we go past day in and day out not paying conscious attention to. But without our knowledge they play a very silent but a salient part in our lives!
The banyan tree was one such thing from my high school years. Little did I give any attention or importance to it, but all my precious years revolved around it!
I studied at RSK Higher Secondary School in BHEL, Trichy, Tamil Nadu. We had a massive and a very majestic banyan tree in our school (I hope it’s still there!). It’s branches were so widespread that it could easy shelter 500 kids under it!
Our typical school day started and ended under the banyan tree. We assembled for our morning assembly under it. We ran back to it during lunch break with our lunch boxes. Sat in its shade, eating our lunch while chatting, joking and sometimes literally rolling on the mud laughing at the silliest jokes (and getting stung by the long red fire ants!!!). Soon after school, we ran back to the banyan tree to play. Just imagining it after twenty odd years, I can still picture and hear the noises of kids screaming, laughing and prancing around!
All the major cultural events took place under the banyan tree. We sat in straight lines class-wise. During sports days, we sat under it sipping Rs. 1 pepsi cooling ourselves from the summer heat!
And how can I not forget the sight of kids playing Tarzan swinging on the many areal roots of the banyan tree!
Just being under those outstretched branches gave us a sense of security, belonging and a feeling of home!
On our recent visit to Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu. The girls and I took a stroll around the university my mom’s working in. There I spotted a banyan tree. I was instantly taken back in time to the banyan tree we hand in school. Memories gushed in. The banyan tree I never paid much attention back in the day, suddenly felt so special and precious after all these decades, stirring so many emotions within me!
For a brief moment, I wanted my girls to enjoy the little joys I treasured as a child under the banyan tree. The pictures in this post are moments from that evening!
“Sometimes you never know the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory!”