Tollygaunje Days...

Jaane kya pilaaya tune

Bada maza aaya

Jhoom uthi re main

Mastaani deewaani

I don’t know what you have given me to drink

It was real fun

I started dancing like a man possessed

Yes, this is the song from Jugnu (though at that time I didn’t know that) takes me to that Kalipujo night in Tollygaunje,

where we shifted from Raj Bhavan for a brief period of time, when after dinner all the family members which included

my parents, sister and  two uncles were just strolling around from one pandal to the other and this very song wafted in

my ears and stayed there. From the Palatial house to Government Housing Estates. With its very run of the mill

existence I was soaked into a culture of Bengali Bourgeoisie. The bonding, camaraderie, the subtle pettiness,

competitive mind set and over all the know-it-all attitude. 

I had a vivid memory of how my elder sister used

to lead a band of fifty to sixty boys and girls of

her age and my first stage appearance under my

Didi’s guidance, where for the entire period of my

performance (I was supposed to recite a poem)

kept my eyes shut, almost at the verge of dozing

off. I was extremely shy and was averse to public

speaking…which till date remained with me.

So, though we stayed there for a very brief period of time (year and a half) I had very fond memories attached to

Tollygaunje. Lot of FIRSTS I experienced there…some I can tell, some I have buried within myself. It was really

intoxicating like the song Jaane Kya Pilaaya tune….

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