>The childhood home
That favourite corner where I crouched in every game of hide and seek.
The cement and alabaster roof that burnt under our feet as we played hop scotch.
That tiny space under the staircase from where I dug out precious treasures flung away by the family.
The aangan where I squatted to suck a juicy mango as a three-year-old.
Nani’s room with Nana’s perfume and talcum powder on the dressing table.
The store room with the chest of drawers with Nani’s toiletries.
The warm sun of a winter afternoon on the garden where we sullied our hands with wet clay.
The balustrade along the staircase which doubled up as my slide.
The window sill in Baba’s room where I sat pretending to read a book before I could read the English alphabet.
The dining room of discussions.
The school where I spend 12 formative years of my life
That tree in the school with its gnarled roots where we sat in to share lunch with friends.
The cool corridors where we lined up, giggled and fell out of line.
The amla tree whose fruit was forbidden by the school mali.
The teak wood benched – polished smooth – on which we bent and prayed in the chapel.
The pink parlour for four-year-olds with a pink tea set that we fought over.
The rotten smell of fish in the Biology lab, the caustic smell of chemicals in the Chemistry Lab.
The comfortable infirmary bed to rest on, on days of stomach cramps.
The water cooler conversations, back-stage bickering.
The dust on the black school shoes as we shuffled out the school gate.
The classroom opposite the canteen where the smell of fresh aloo tikkis wafted in before break time.
Pachpan khambey, lal deewarein of the college years.
The college café and the penny pinching.
Idling away warm winter afternoons in the lush green front lawns.
The warm smiles shared with the spastic boy at the college PCO.
The photocopier boy – expressionless, indispensable – outside the library.
The auditorium packed for a talk by Rajdeep Sardesai.
The gazebo in which the teacher’s voice drifted away into nothingness.
The TV room in the hostel in which we ooh-ed and aah-ed over Hrithik Roshan.
The bathroom that was used always with the door unbolted!
The balcony in which we spend long evening and longer nights when the power snapped.
The room in which we learnt to sleep with lights on because the roomies wanted to study.
The places where we wrote our love story
The walls that I tempted him to cross to come meet me and which he never did.
The roads on which we went for long drives.
The dinner at Hyatt to which I wore the skirt borrowed from a friend.
The pizza place for heart-shaped pizzas and an instant photograph on Valentine’s Day.
The PCO across the college where I could ask him to call me back.
The cyber café that charged thirty rupees for half an hour as I wrote love letters on Hotmail.
The friend’s place where he would drop me off after each date.
The coffee places which smelt of cocoa beans and love.
The Swatch kiosk at the mall from where he bought me a watch
The topmost closet in my room where I hid his cards and gifts.
What places are special for the memories they bring back to you?
PIMPING THIS: If you have time, hop over to my other blog where I’m going to be featuring my photos every Wednesday as part of the ABC Wednesdays. Go, show me some love!