A Quest on Overdrive … :)

An eccentric rambler on life's lessons and mercies, found and lost… :)


The Chronicles of a Class

… or how we got our Nine days of Fame, thanks to Deccan Chronicle 😀

I know. Sigh. Trust me to get all cheesy, even about something as wonderful as getting appreciation, state-wide, well actually Nationally and Internationally when you think of the number of readers we reached out to, via shares on Facebook. That’s why I laud the social networking sites, while I still fight the engaging way they never let you go.

Cris, the awesome writer of this article, made such succinct beautiful sense of a rather long and garbled out-of-focus rambling, in answer to some wonderful questions she asked, during our ‘interview’. I must thank her for her patience and for her ability to sift through all of the rambling and come up with the required 250 words. And what do I say of Harish R Varma, the instigator of the interview, and therefore the write? Certainly creating and taking forward the creating of Happy Days for as many people as he could 🙂

(Click on pictures to enlarge and see in full resolution – as full as can be 🙂 )


harishrvarma1 harishrvarma









(The above was written in here, on 11 July, just before the World Cup came to its fantastic close 🙂 – and here I am, on 19 July, catching up with the many things that have happened since )

The Article, published in The Deccan Chronicle, on 3 July, 2014, in their Classroom Page, which is a space for news on/of/ from campuses across the nation featured my class and me! All thanks to Cris and Harish 🙂 A shoutout to both of you wonderful people. You have brought joy and sense of achievement not only to the famous 47+1 but also to their families and the school! God Bless y’all 🙂

You’ll find that the content is self explanatory. And for those who do wonder at my having played the WC anthem of 2010, I have shared a picture, a screenshot, I think, taken by one of those kids who did remember, Vaisakh, where he has highlighted the relevant part 😀 I cannot tell you what joy that brought! The comments that followed are soul food. Thank you to each of you. (Click on the picture to enlarge, and read)

The Article – highlighting done by Vaisakh

The poster competition, referred to, in the article also brought good news for the class. We received the First Prize, a shield, which proudly adorns our wall 🙂



The First Prize for the Poster Competition, on FIFA World Cup 2014, rests proudly in our Class!

So, what brought us this fame? It was these expressions of creativity, mainly, that I had shared, along with my crazy football updates, most regularly on Facebook! When I asked my class, and the other classes I go, if we could update our Black board, or any other space in class with information and pictures, the immediate response was a resounding yes, from X’D’ – MY class. However, the next Monday, when I saw the uninspired writing of JUST the highlights, my face fell, and I certainly did mope 😀 I did sound disappointed too, and told them that it was OK, and we’d stick to whatever they could 😀 By the afternoon, when I was invited back to the class, there was a sea change, a transformation of the wallscape, where collage was taking shape, and the greenboard assumed festive colours. We were in Samba Land 😛 There was no turning back! And since the publication of that charming write up by Cris, the rest as they say, is History 😀

We did Rock the Samba, all the way down in our Class!

We did Rock the Samba, all the way down in our Class!


The Collage slowing taking shape












Completed! The Collage!


sheild The Architects of the Poster  poster1  After the reading of the Article at Assembly!


The 48!                                    The Poster Posers!             The Creativity!                 And the Joy! Oh! The Joy!

But, it does not stop there. No Sireeee! X ‘D’ does not believe in doing things by half-measures, and they certainly measured up in performances in the Cultural Fest which just concluded, but most especially, they are Masters of the Cliffhanger 😀 How? Ah! Therein lies the tale!

Gurupoornima was observed in school, on 11 July, 2014 – to mark the day for oblation to our own Guru; both, teachers and students, paid their respects in whichever way they could to their own Gurus. That day, more than Teachers’ Day was  a revelation! We had ‘paada puja’, led by our own Principal, Dr. Manoranjini, who honoured her Guru, the Chief Guest for the occasion, in the morning session, followed by students’ performances of both dance and music, tastefully done. It must be mentioned here, that this session where the paada puja, the washing of the Guru’s feet, and then paying obeisance with a ‘namaskaram’ at the feet, does not come easy to anyone, these days. Especially in public! So, it was truly inspiring to have the School Principal lead the way for all of us, teachers, and students to do the same, only if one wished to. This was done in full view of the entire gathering in the Auditorium, so that it transferred the sense of humility one felt in the presence of something far greater than ourselves. Respect.  No compulsion there – but we did, to those whom we considered as our Guru! It was a liberating experience too, to have been able to set aside one’s ego, and prostrate at the feet of those we did consider as our Guru.

So, what does this have to do with my class? Ah! The absolutely creative and mischievous lot they are, they did not wish me AT ALL, but looked suitably dumb in the first period when children from other classes came in, wished me, and even shared cards and sweets 😀 ! My class? Not a quiver of emotion. Deadpan. Puzzled I was, but did not say a WORD. Except at the end of the first period when I told them accusingly, that they did not even WISH me 😀 They smiled. Serenely 🙂 🙂 That was clue enough. The cliffhanger. I was there, but did not have time to wonder what exactly they were upto, for much work awaited, in planning duties for the upcoming Cultural Fest, due to start immediately after the weekend 😀

Last period. Lots of work. And two of my students come, terrified expressions, to tell me another girl in class has injured her leg when the desk fell on her leg – possibly a fracture! I dropped whatever I was doing, and rushed, heart in my mouth, directing one of the two to rush and get the PT Teacher. I reached the Class door, which was shut!

The penny dropped. I stopped. Looked at this other girl with me, who, incidentally, was trying hard to maintain the terrified expression. The smile, the mischief had started leaking through the frown 😛

Gingerly, I pushed open the door, and what do I see, hear, but an electric guitar strumming (our own George Mathew, ace guitarist at it 😀 ), along with Vivek on the Triple Drums, belting out, with the class, WE WILL WE WILL ROCK YOU! Oooooh! Ooooh! I did a Susmita Sen expression, (when she received her Miss Universe Title) – the jaw dropped, round eyed, happy, overwhelmed expression! And my heart started beating at normal pace once again 😛 Well as normal as can be, when you’re overjoyed! And then it raced again, my heart 😀 I was sure that the class and its Class Teacher were going to be hauled up for the racket emanating from the class! Shushing them down (duh! What a task! ) I went on to thank them – but no, it was not done yet – the Smart Class was switched on with a lovely message 🙂 Cards awaited 🙂 Shared below 🙂 And a lovely gift too! Sheepishly they said they wanted to surprise me, that is why they stayed mum all day 🙂 And boy oh BOY! did they ever!!!

I promised them a blog, to attempt to capture the sense of gratitude I have for them, for their affection, the sense of conspiracy I feel most times, with them, in all our endeavours 🙂 X “D”, you are the rock, not me 🙂 So, as the cliche goes, Rock ON! 😀

Shared here is their creativity, and that of the students of other classes, particularly Class 8’B’, 7″D” and 6″B”, along with cards from a certain lovely young lady in Class 12, and others from classes I do not go to, this year 🙂 All, all of them very very precious souls 🙂 Thank you, each and everyone of you. Stay Blessed!


The Cover


XD card

Awesomeness from X D



Collections of pure blessings from the kids!

Meanwhile, The Chronicles with this class will most certainly continue, you can bet on that!

Earlier, they have featured here,  🙂
And yet another awesome X D made a farewell memorable, here
Last years’ X D, when they were in Class 8, featured here 😀 (I bet you people did not even know, right? )

Comments are welcome, dear kids 🙂 If you cannot see the comment space below, click on the title of this write up, and it will follow. All you need to sign in with are your name, email id 🙂 The email will NOT be shared.

20 July, 2014
*Phew* Under 1600 words. Just. 😀

Lol! I just learned something. When you write X and D, without a space you get this XD ! Oh my!


Love on the Rocks ~ Ismita Tandon Dhanker

This here is yet another non review 🙂 . I’ve already stated my case for not doing reviews, simply because I do not know how to, and therefore cannot :D! However what I can do is to share my perspective, after reading a book, and that is what I am going to do. Again 🙂

“Murder on the high seas” is the tagline for this racy thriller, called “Love on the Rocks”, a debut novel of a successful MBA graduate working with Thomas Cook, turned full time writer – Ismita Tandon Dhanker.

That, in itself should give one an idea of where the action is going, and does. The entire story is set in a merchant navy vessel, aptly named “Sea Hyena”, and worked into the story are details of life aboard a MNV (merchant navy vessel), the intricacies of relationships that grow, or stunt, on long voyages. Not to mention intrigues and murders!

It would be easy for me quote from the blurb on the back of this paperback, published by Penguin Books India, but let me try and bring a bit of me into it 🙂 The ego you know, cannot be but appeased 😀

Sancha, a newly wed, joins her husband, the Chief Officer, aboard the Sea Hyena, a few months after their marraige, in Japan, where the ship is berthed, before the next voyage. They intend to sail to Miami, with a cargo of new cars. Sancha is a lively, inquisitive, intelligent girl. Very contemporary. And very much in love with her husband Aaron.

She soon comes to know of the death of the previous cook on board the ship, before it came to harbour, at Japan, and starts wondering what could have happened. Later, during a party one evening, almost twenty thousand dollars is found missing from the Captain’s safe. This brings in the Safety and Quality Officer of the Company, who is looked upon with wariness, and respect by the Officers and Crew of the ship. Sancha’s curiosity, and her interest in the investigation also finds respect in Raghav, the investigating officer.

Almost everyone, in her eyes, could have been involved in it. For almost everyone has secrets, and oddities, that slowly reveal themselves in the least expected moments. Whether it is  Captain Kuruvilla (the Master of the ship) and his foul language, Aaron, her husband, the Chief Engineer Kurian, First Engineer Harsh, or even the Engine Cadet, Alex, or Baldy as he is called.

Matters come to a head, when another murder takes place, and the sh** hits the fan, in a manner of speaking :P! What comes of the investigation and how, as the writer puts it, “deceit was the only universal truth” comes to be, is what wraps an eventful voyage for Sancha.

I started reading late  last evening, with plenty of breaks, given that my medication has a tendency to induce sleep regularly, but I did get so absorbed in the story, that  I had it completed by this evening. Given my varied activities, and the sedation, now that is a record :D! So, why am I telling you this? I did enjoy reading it, and it was absorbing.

To the mechanics, now, (for want of a better way to say what I am going to 🙂 ). You’ve got appreciate the life and the excess baggage that a Merchant Navy Officer/ Crew and his family have, to be able to fully understand the nuances here. As a spouse, you may accompany your husband (if he is an officer), on voyages. But it does get lonely, darned lonely for a woman without company. And for men, starved of female company for long stretches of time, this can be either a welcome distraction, or a problem! Ismita brings out the dilemma of both the men and the woman concerned quite effectively.

The entire novel is in the first person, of not just one character. Interestingly, each of the main characters, speaks / writes, in parts, in sections, and helps the story develop not just in a linear manner, but in a sort of web, that , as a reader, you want to connect, and complete. It’s difficult, but, yes, in a sense you can manage to make it work. At least your guess work on the Who Actually Dunnit would work. The end, however, is skillfuly concocted. Concocted. 🙂 You’ll understand, and perhaps enjoy that concoction, as I did!

There are times though, when I found the conversations/ dialogues a bit unnatural, in the sense that I have / I am/ We are seem artificial. These always find a better resonance in its shortened forms, for sheer natural feeling. So it could have been I’ve/ I’m/ We’re. Probably that is the only thing I found to quibble gently about, in the book.

The sub-plot too, is artfully managed, and gels well with the rest of the plot.

Ismita is the wife of a Merchant Navy Officer, and has been on a voyage with her husband. So the story comes, also, from real time experiences, in terms of descriptions and notions and prejudices 🙂 There is always the doubt about the “I” in the novel, as I have mentioned already in previous  non review – whether or not one understands the “I” to be separate from the author. Finally we take what we want from it, anyway, no matter who says what! 🙂 🙂

All in all, this was a book I did enjoy very much! Thank you Ismita, also known as Lesser Known Poet, on Facebook, for the request, and for sending the book across. In fact, dear readers, I must also tell you that she is adept at poetry too, and you can read some wonderful pieces on her blog too!

The pictures have been taken (oops, without permission, but I know she won’t mind :D) from Ismita’s blog. All credit to whoever took those pictures 🙂

This is a book you’d enjoy if you’re into murder mysteries, and enjoy a good sail 🙂 Happy Reading!

17 September, 2012
(Just under 1000 words! yayyyy! )