When you are seventeen and off on Fergusson College’s famous French exchange programme, everything seems special. There is nothing that is not worth noting down.
Now, I chuckle in delight. There is so much to remember.
We begin with what I call the ‘cycling-shorts drama’ in my excited record of each detail.
We had been told to carry cycling shorts because we were going to have a lesson at the circus school in Chambéry. We were fifteen teenagers, bouncing with joy.
We whispered to one another.
“Did you carry a pair?”
“Oh no! I forgot!”
“I didn’t either!”
“Oh my God.”
Not having a pair of cycling shorts was a Big Deal.
We Had Been Told To Carry Them And None Of Us Had Any.
The world would come to an end.
We called friends, cousins, everyone.
At less than half an hour’s notice, we had a cousin and a friend coming all the way to college to give us cycling shorts.
I wonder if I still have friends like that, who would travel 11 km across Pune to give me shorts.
At that time, though, it was not a big deal, or so my diary seems to indicate. (My diary does not mention whether I returned the shorts at all.)
Ah, the joy of college friendship.
And this is just the first story of many …