Today it’s a shame for anyone to admit that he/she watches doordarshan. But I as a kid had no option. Out of its many useless programs we eagerly awaited the cartoons on Sunday morning. Very few kinds woke up early morning on Saturdays to watch He-Man and Popaye show. Sunday morning started with me waking up listening Rangoli. Then there was a break which telecasted some Marathi programs and at 9 we use to have Mogali. “Jungle Jungle Pata chala hai chaddi pehanke phul khila hai” we all kids became part of that jungle and witnessed the adventured of little kid Mogali. Lot before we heard of global warming and nature conservation we realized in our deepest conscious the ill effects that men can possibly have on the jungle. I did see the entire series again on Sahara channel in 2002 when I was doing my engineering. After Mogali they showed Alice in Wonderland in hindi, then danu, potali wale baba ki kahani and lot more.
For the kids deprived of any quality entertainment or any good sports facility this was the ultimate pleasure on Sunday morning.
Sometimes I wish we had cartoon network or Pogo but then I cant escape the nostalgia that came with these serials. Chandrakanta was another big serial full of cheap entertainment devoid of any value. Mogali or Potali wale baba did not have any special effects but they had immensely powerful stories that made an impression on my young mind. Today I watch harry potter and Lord of the rings and I never feel that Mogali or other serials were of inferior quality compared to them. They had a common purpose and they served it the best possible way during that time.
After Mogali I loved watching Malgudi Days and Amaravati Ke tat pe. Excellent serials that showed on screen some of the finest stories from various authors. Maldugi was R.K. Narayan’s masterpiece opened with R.K. Laxman’s cartoons. Amaravati ke Tat pe was not a popular serial but it showed stories of many eminent authors from India. As I grew up I either the quality of programs reduced or I started finding them idotic.
Untill 1996 world cup I had not realized what is Cricket. I did play cricket with a few kids in neighborhood with limited knowledge of the game. When I saw India loosing to Australia in the first match my father had forcibly made me sit to watch the match as I was causing lot of nuisance. When I saw the men in blue lead by Azaharuddin loosing to aussies I felt an immense pain. My country should not loose was the only feeling. Somewhere I felt that if I take up the game it will be good for India. Soon I and fellow people started playing cricket. India lost in semis to Lanka and sight of Vinod kambli returning to pavilion crying made each one of us cry. It was not about a game. It was a wish of millions of people across the country shattered by mere 11 players of Shri Lanka.
Then for a few years the only aim was to become a Cricketer. I shared the common dream with all my fellow students. From a good for nothing I became an average cricketer with those efforts. It was not totally waste of time as it gave me many new experiences and friends. Like Randy Pauch even though I did not make into the Indian National team I learnt a lot about being in a team.
My fascination with cricket reduced after the match fixing issue and when I became intelligent enough to learn that there are many things in our nation that need my attention before cricket and I am in position to contribute more to those things rather than cricket. I threw away all those cricket poster and stickers I had collected there were over a few thousand. I haven’t played cricket for last 2 years. I have tried my hands now on TT, Badminton, Boxing and basketball.
- Government Village Library – Loliem
My neighborhood had no kids of my age. My father introduced me to the local librarian once and promised me to take there any time I wanted. Looking at a reader whose head merely reached his desk’s height the librarian was very much amused. So were the other people in library most of them I knew as freedom fighters and good for nothing old men. There was a cupboard dedicated to children literature. It had tiny books from RobinHood to Hercules. Robinson Crusoe to Tarzan. I had them read within a few months. While kids bigger than me took a few months to read one fat book, I would start a race against time to finish a 200 page book in 2-3 days.
Lot before others I had read the entire book shelf. I changed my interest to other shelf which had plays and other classic literature in Marathi. I had not read any English book by than and had never seen a comics book. Soon I was reading interesting accounts of World War II, real spy stories and plays. Chintaman Vinayak Joshi was a great humorous author of Marathi Literature. I explored the mediocretic aspects of middleclass life with his protagonist Chimanrav. How this man gets duped everywhere including his own marriage. In the conquest to overcome common problems in life he also balances his family.
Then I moved my attention to hindi literature. Unfortunately It was limited to the Jasoosi Upanyas published by diamond comics and movie scripts. I had read complete dialogs of movies like Don, Aradhana, Gumnaam before I saw them on screen.
- Chandoba aka Chandamama
Chandamama is a monthly that is published in around 14 different languages. This magazine though meant for children was more popular in adults. It had everything that one kids should get in childhood. A dose of culture , traditions and values through a long mythological story series from Krishnavatar to Mahabharat, from Ganesh Puran to Vishnu Puran. The front page would always depict a scene from this series.
Then there use be a magnup opus story mostly fictional and full of fantasy. Something like Three Girls, Helen of troy, etc.
How can I forget the sense of justice showed by Vikram while answering the questions of Vetal after an entertaining story? When I read Chandoba for the first time it use to also contain sections on Indian Literature where I read consisted versions of books like Godan, Yayati and so many more.
Readign chandoba was a ceremony for me. Like how we use to preserve our candies I use to keep some stories unread so that I can read them in future. There were long thirty days before I could get the next issue hence it was necessary that I conserver an article or two from it. The first story I would read use to be compulsorily the Mythological one. Full of difficult words and extreme details each epic ran for 5-6 years. Too small period for a magazine that is in existence for around 66 years now.
I had trunk full of old issues and whenever I felt bore I use to pick a few. Thank to termites my entire collection was utilized as food material by them. I hope they ARE HAPPY L