I moved to a school in Pune when I was five years old. I was like any other excited girl in the first standard with my new tiffin box, my new water bottle and my new bag with new books. I came from a smallish school in Vashi, so even the city was new to me. My first day still stands out in my memory.
In my old school, when it was time for us to eat, our teacher used to tell us, “Come now, children, open your tiffin boxes!”
In my new school, when the bell rang, we were supposed to eat. Nobody told five-year-old me. I had not even heard of Pavlov.
I remember clearly how hungry and grumpy I was when school got over at 3:30. I remember how angry I was with my seven-year-old sister for not having told me that I should have eaten. I even remember that my mother laughed when I got home.
What I don’t remember is this: what was five-year-old Varsha doing when fifty one children in her class got up and went out and ate lunch?