Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Games of Yore

I wrote about Games I Play some time back. That is, games I play with my family and friends, and which I consciously rescued from oblivion called cartons-in-store-ledges. Here, I sit and think back into my childhood. And when I do that, the reel that runs inside my head conjures up images of play-time, and more play-time (unless of course it was report card day and then the story is in a different tone altogether). Why? Since that is what being a child once upon a fun time was about. Playing … in gay abandon. 

Outdoors!

Remember hopscotch? Stapu, as was lovingly called in our house. One chalk one stone, make that a flat-ish stone, and a life-size game board drawn on the street or on the driveway. Even on top of the roofs, kindly lent to us for a few hours. You could practice those jumps-on-one-leg, alone. Better still, call the whole neighbourhood to take turns at hopping, reaching 8, then standing beyond it all and throwing the stone backwards, ‘No looking, please!’ 

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29 comments:

  1. I was literally smiling throughout this post as it took me back a long long way to my childhood days. Back then we used to have a 'gang' (for lack of a better word) of kids who used to play anything and everything that came to our fancy on a given day. Wonder if my little daughter will ever get to have such fun shared experiences with her friends, maybe she will, but it will surely be restricted to school only. More so given the fact that I live in an independent house and my street does not have any other kids of her age.

    Your magic with words this time acted like a time machine which took me back to those good old days when all my worries were around how to retrieve the rubber ball from the terrace of the grumpy old neighborhood uncle. Lovely post Sakshi, really lovely.

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    1. Yes, I had a 'gang' too, and there was always a leader voted in. Those 'gang wars' to decide who plays their cricket where, or their hide-and-seek. I don't think our children can have it exactly as we did - too little space, too little time and too little patience to sweat it in the sun or get wet in the rain. I am at a loss looking for play mates for my child too.

      Well, good to know you got transported. I did too. Thankfully, no grumpy old uncles in my memory. :P Thanks for reading! :)

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  2. Kids these days are so burdened with Studies and other activities , that it has literally stripped them off a natural childhood..And even more because we hardly have good parks and playgrounds left for them to run around...Confined within the walls of the apartment...Your post took me back to our days as kids...Wonderful days those were :)

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    1. I do think paucity of open areas, and safe play areas, is eating into their childhood. However, times will always change, and every generation will feel nostalgic for what they did in their 'Those were the days'.
      Thanks for stopping by, Soham. :)

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  3. Sakshi , you took me down memory lane, a lane where kids of all ages played to participate and contribute and not to compete . Games like dabba Ice-spice , lagori , langadi , vish-amrit , hop-scotch were played till it was evening and the parents forced us to disburse. 'Kaccha limboos 'were generously accommodated . My son doesn't know these games.

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    1. 'Not to compete' - SO true, Kalpana. Yes, my mother always had to pull me away from the fun.
      Hahaha, Kaccha Limboos' :D I did continue to be that for a very long time. Maybe because I was a tiny one around. :P
      My son has no idea either. I'm going to tell him about those for sure. :)
      Thanks a lot for reading!

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  4. Oh yess, I played them too.. :):)

    Sakshi, I have nominated you for Liebster Award from my blog. Hope you would accept it :) :)

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  5. This is such a timeless and nostalgic piece, Sakshi!
    I've nominated you for the Versatile Blogger Award, here - http://stiryoursouls.blogspot.in/2013/12/lights-camera-versatile-blogger-award.html
    Hope to see you around. :)

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  6. Wow! This one took me down the memory lane. Stapu, Chhupam-Chhupai, Vish-Amrit, all those games in the lane in front of our building. It's really sad that our kids will not be able to enjoy such freedom and those simple yet heartwarming games. Another brilliant post from you. I think I have said this before, but still I'll repeat, I love the way you give life to the simple things and day to day incidents. :-)

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    1. Even if our kids will be able to enjoy a fraction of what we did, I don't think there are as many trees left to climb, or as many children left to play with.
      Very happy you liked it, Rekha. :)

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  7. Wow! This one took me down the memory lane. Stapu, Chhupam-Chhupai, Vish-Amrit, all those games in the lane in front of our building. It's really sad that our kids will not be able to enjoy such freedom and those simple yet heartwarming games. Another brilliant post from you. I think I have said this before, but still I'll repeat, I love the way you give life to the simple things and day to day incidents. :-)

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  8. Nicely written, Sakshi! But why must you feel sad. I am sure N will play a lot of outdoor games perhaps not the same ones we did. For eg. my kids play vampire which is a version of hide and seek. They did play kho kho sometimes too. But what they play regularly are cricket and football. Yes, even my Chotu tags along with bada bhaiya and plays football with boys double his height! And did I tell you that I bought a kitchen set when my elder son was 4ish. His pet game was bringing all our utensils on the sofa and putting water in them. His version of cooking :).

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    1. I sure hope he will, Rachna. Yes, games evolve too. I just wish the outdoors did not come with so many 'ifs' attached - safety, security being the most important ones. Gone are the days when the whole neigbourhood was our play-den. They live restricted to the park in front of our houses. Usually. A smaller safer city would be ideal.
      Football sounds great. I hope he makes a 'gang' sooner than later to kick around. :D
      And that pretend cooking was my favourite game too. I used to put flowers inside the plastic pressure cookers and make food from heaven for the dolls. :D
      Thanks for liking this, Rachna.

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  9. Brought back so many memories! Did you play Dog and the Bone? and Lagori?? :) I cringe when I see kids today having what I call an armchair childhood :( Thanks for bringing those moments back. :)

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    1. Yes, I played Dog and the Bone, where a hanky was a bone. :D Lagori I do not recall. Perhaps by another name?
      Happy I jogged your memory, Seeta. :)

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  10. hey i played them too. brought back some wonderful memories. lovely post :)

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  11. Revived some wonderful memories, you did Sakshi! Waiting for the play hour to start in the evening so all of us kids in the mohalla tumbled out of homes, of gili dandas and piththoos... sigh those were the days!

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    1. My mother tried her best to teach us kids 'piththoo', for that was her favourite game from childhood, but I just did not pick it up. :P Those really were the days.
      Thanks for reading, Ilakshee.

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  12. brought back lovely memories of many a hot afternoon spent playing hopscotch and other games!!
    :) :)

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  13. That was a walk down the memory lane... all these games made my evenings awesome... and now kids are glued in-front of PCs and TV.

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    1. Kids probably do not have much choice. Show me a neighbourhood which is safe for kids all sizes to run around, and I will shift there immediately. :)
      Thanks a lot for reading,

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  14. Oh this one, with all those quaint phrases, was such a lovely walk down nostalgia! Wonderful how those days used to be.
    Don't worry, I am sure N will discover some of these when he grows a little older and goes to a formal school. Maybe not Ice Pice, but there may certainly be Kho Kho and Pakdan Pakdai in his future.

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    1. Good to have jogged you down the memory lane, Rickie. How we used to sweat it out back then - and happily so. Now, ask me to move a limb and I think 200 times. :D
      I am sure N will find some of those treasures to enjoy.
      Thanks for stopping by!

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  15. Vish Amrit, Stapu, Tippee-Tippee-Tap..Pitthu! Those were the days! days of, as you rightly put, playing in gay abandon. This very outdoor playing culture is what I feel my daughter misses out on, either because of the region we live in where major part of the year is scorchingly hot and getting out of the house is pure torture or it could be because of the growing dominance of the PS2 Ipad revolution.

    Great post Sakshi. Hopped by from Rekha's page. Looking forward to reading you more often :)

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    1. I think both reasons that you think are valid for the 'gay abandon' vanishing. Add to that safety and security and we have no choice but to buy them a PS2 the moment they learn to spell it right. :)
      Thank you to Rekha for sending a reader my way. And that too one who looks forward to more. :)
      Many thanks, Deep. :)

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