Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Going back to Rourkela

1992 was when we people left Rourkela and after that I never went back. Every time longing to go back and re-live those carefree days. My breath, my life, my existence everything seems to have been left behind in the air of Rourkela.

Being a part of Rkl-mates group, there was a get-together planned of people from across schools. I was truly looking forward to it hoping to meet some of my class mates.At the same time I was prepared to be disappointed with the meet and it truly was. But the point was to be at Rkl and that succeeded.

As I stepped on to the Rkl soil and took a deeeeeeeeeep breath of Rkl-air, I was vibrating with life. The 22nd of December when winter had begun and the breath condensed into smoke circles...As I stepped outside the station, I tried to look back and recall whether the railway station was the same or had it changed? The rickshaws outside were still there. Our hotel was at old Rourkela...imagine coming home and having to stay at a hotel!

As I entered the township, my eyes were greedily lapping up the ring road scene...not sure of where it started...some roads seeming familiar and some we were taken through the Engineering road with which I wasn't too familiar even then..all that I knew very well was the road from sector 20 to Old Rourkela...the road which led to our college and the road from Sector 20 to Carmel school via IGH & Nehru maidan. It seems the Nehru maidan is no longer used for the Dushera celebration when we kids used to gather to watch Ravan getting 'killed' year after year by 'Rama'.

The sad part was seeing the houses which were our first homes in such dilapidated conditions. What were the vast beautiful garden where we played seemed to have shrunk to just a pocket sized piece of land.Had the house and the accompanying space shrunk or is it because I was seeing it after so many years? The gardens which had won so many prizes for being the most beautiful one in the township...

Meeting people from back much has changed and so much has remained the same...but what I came back with is enough memories to last me this life time.