From age nine, I had this burning desire to have a photographic memory. It would have made life so much easier for us young kids.
Yes, the first thing that would have happened would be NO studying. Just open the leaves of the book and then click, click, and register.
So here I was, praying fervently to God, to give me such a memory. There were daily reminders. Days passed into months and yet nothing happened.
Eventually, the truth had to be accepted. There was no option but to go back to the daily studying drill.
But one still lived in hope. May be God was busy doing other things and would listen to my prayers some day.
Meanwhile, the long hours at school were unfair. After getting up before the sun made its appearance was torture. Then one had to rush to school, half asleep before being woken up by a strong rebuke from a peering teacher.
I would return home at 4pm and after some much needed refreshments, back to the books again.
Whoever devised this damn thing called homework should have been strangled at birth itself. He was to me a horrid, gawky creature who was bent, with small spectacles and a horrid, sadistic grin.
Homework was work aplenty. The teachers were probably related to that evil sadist.
The parents would bark, “Finish in an hour and you can go and play.”
No way, that would never happen. They probably knew it and wanted me to stay at home instead and study to become a doctor or whatever they had chalked out for me.
They also felt that by keeping me at home under their strict guidance would turn me into a spotless gentleman.
I must admit this broke me in no uncertain terms. I hated studies, period. And I wasn’t one of those little chappies with round glasses whose forehead gleamed with intelligence.
I was an ordinary child with average intelligence who needed hard work to get across the line.
Oh, the boredom of it all. The same story kept repeating every day – school-study-homework-study-sleep.
The weekend freedom ended on Sunday afternoon with more homework and early bedtime.
At least the mornings afforded some leisure time with friends, playing cricket or football. Television was considered evil and the occasional glimpses of it was had while the parents were away doing chores.
There was another dilemma – To Mug or not to Mug was the question. The teachers insisted that one must grasp the subject instead of just rutting it out.
That would mean more hours and no leisure at all. God, you were very unkind to us kids. You make us slog when we should be enjoying our life.
That Mr Homework must have prayed harder than us to inflict that horror.
Oh God, please a photographic memory.