St. Anne's High School
The temple where I was moulded between the age of 3 to 16 yrs of age. It was a school which gave me more by way of sanskar than both my parents could have given. It was the best decision my parents made for me. It was an expensive school in those days. Most of the students there were from the bureaucratic and rich families only few were from the middle class like me. Girls only.
The school was different because it was led by Mother Colombiere. She inculcated the habit of regular prayers in us. Though it was Our father in Heaven that was said aloud. She encouraged us Non-christian girls to say our own prayer silently. Completely unlike the missionaries on a converting spree. That made us tolerant to all religions.
M La Colombiere
The teaching methods were different more hands on. No one taught us maths on the blackboard yet we had a Maths teacher with a Doctrate ofcourse in maths guiding us. Its a different story that I did not become PhD too like her and the fault it entirely mine ;). Geography meant making models, preparing skits on different cultures, exhibitions, sharing scrap books of our vacations to various places. We loved Mrs. Radhakrishnan for all her ideas. She taught English too. Her class was always fun. History period was synonymous with Ms. Liz Joseph and the mock battles and wars we acted out with wooden rulers for swords. Sometimes we took a chance to hit the girl we hated in those wars and together smashed her later only to include her in our gang. Guffaw. If it was study visits we just crossed the road and went over to the Prince of Wales Museum, Bombay Natural History Society or Lion Gate during the Navy week.
The first things we learnt in school were cleanliness and human values. I remember the entire school going for a deko when the new potty palace was built for us. Our Aiyah and the other helpers took really good care of us. Simon our watchman knew each kid by the name and even their parents. He was one watchdog. His grand daughter studied in our school too.
All right after all that what are my food memories associated with school you will ask. The list is here:
This from our canteen:
Puff pastries and cakes came from Yankee Doodles I think. Don't remember.
Golspot because it gave an orange tongue and the inside of the cap had my favorite junglebook cartoons. I was some collector. I had the album, flip cards, mini bottles, free tickets for the movie and everything.
Simba is history now. Their wafers were cruchy tomato flavored.
From outside the school
Campion's icecream:My school shared the municipal garden with our neighboring ' Campion' a boys school ;). Some of the girls would flirt so we had luch breaks at separate times. Yet if we met during PT periods we would bribe the boys to get us icecream from their canteen as ours didn't sell any. We would sometimes get formal invitations from them for some exhibitions that said "Dear sisters" we knew that addressed the Nuns in our school! and we would happily join them.
Bhaiya's spiced Raw mango slices, berries/ Bore : This bhaiya amazingly looks the same even now as he looked when we were tiny tots. If we now grown adults pass by his stand and smile at him he knows it has to be an Annite. He slices the Totapuris thinnest I've ever seen outside a biology lab. The bore he gets is the stickiest they are divine pleasure. Bhaiya when was chased by Simon from the front wall found the safest place in the backgarden. We knew all his locations. He would tell us girls don't pick from basket he liked it always well lined up and we liked to mess it.
Imported sweets and chewing gum from the smuggler: Yes he would sell fruitella, toblers, juicy fruit and what not when in India all that was available was Parle and Cadburys hard sweets and chocolates. He was well watched by Simon so he never managed selling drugs to girls. But we knew his activities. The school would many times hand him over to police but we would find him there on the next day again.
The ocassional pizza, mango lassi, creamfilled doughnut from Dad's office: When my ever busy and enterprising Dad stole time with his daughter during lunch hours. His office was on the same road so I was lucky. I loved the doughnuts Monginis supplied to their office cafeteria.
P.S: Many years ago this ad was aired with a song "She's special women she's my wife!". Hope the married hear it today! The single hear a similar version. I used to love it.