Dhitang dhitang bole by Hemant mukherjee.
Now 25 or so years later, I come to know it was a popular song by Hemanta Mukherjee, and not some song that our school teachers had got from divine interventions..
It was in the early 80's...and all I can remember are white and red-striped saree clad girls giggling away, while the man friday from the make up market, sweaty shirt, and oily hair, went about his school duty of slapping on, the same coloured powder, wet with wet sponge, and the same horrendous red lipstick, expertly ignorant ( note that, he would be brought in form the erstwhile Prabhat Kalavidaru )of the varied coloured faces he was pasting it on.
Heard this song, and suddenly went into a trance...Not that latest Goan kind of trance... :) ..That trance of course is different where you remember a host of things very unrelated to this post...The kind i'm talking of, is the one that transports you to a world that had seen better days, or maybe sepia days...We had danced to this song while in school for some inter-school dance competition....
Some songs do that to me. A song can remind me of the day I had danced to it while in kindergarten..( oh yes!!! I remember the 1re cone icecreams too that we would get in the school tuck shops on friday!! ) or maybe even the time where I had stayed put in the bathroom, because I got stuck on one line and for the life of me, couldn't remember the next few lines...it was the non-cellphone days, so couldn't even call up and get the much needed bath- finisher from my trusted friends (don't we all have at least one of them...)
The trippy numbers some takes me to the times when we had performed as a group from our colony for some organisation. I remember , the place "Town Hall" It was very prestigious, then, when we would say I danced there or sang or whatever there...remember the time we put alta on our feet , mandatory for those school dances, those endless hours we sat and made jewels out of think ropes and silver foil. My school had insisted on giving us the much needed art-hobby, timepass inspirations, from our school days itself...all accessories have to be handmade...no renting out stuff or buying...pffftt... so we would sit for hours, ( of course very thrilled on having missed some boring History classes) using glue...the very authentic maida paste...yucks...it would always stink after a while I remember. And our fingers all dirty and pichky....no match for the present day fevicol, and gluesticks....with their varied fragrances.
Then there were those days, where if we girls had to dress up as a boy in some play or a dance, we had to customarily wear a beard and a moustache...poor guys, they would look more sissier than us 'boys' . And to think they were already squirming in their half pants for having been railroaded into performing along with 'girls'...snigger , snigger....the very same guys grew up and followed the girls around later, is a different story.
Those were the days, when we would get that sneak preview into our hallowed teachers dancing to show us those difficult steps...now when I look back I realise they were just as human as we were...so why shouldnt they have danced? But you know how it is the teacher -student equation..
Isn't it strange how we put 'roles' onto different people? And they just cannot step out of line, or else they'll be gossiped all over the campus..
It helped us bond, with our teachers, our friends...yes, even those smarty pants who would refuse to share their 'chole bathures'...in exchange for the very boring chapathi sabji or better still ,curd rice..with the small pickle twinkling on top...(was that vadu manga, that my friend brought every single day???)
I still can go back to those days to the last minute of our school day, we had to sing the prayer song...it went something like this..." At the end of **shift our feet behind with half closed eyes**, just kneel and...**hold onto the chair** pray. Thank you Lord...**lift the chair** for my work and **place it upside down**... play, I'll...**on the table...while bending down without moving our heads down......and moving to the end of the row...so that we are the first to be out of the door...gosh!! ( and dumb as were, we would actually think that the teachers wouldn't know...huh!!!! innocence! )
oh yes!!! those were fun times....
But we grew up and our songs changed from precious Lords, and dance songs- mmm, I think the song "dus gayo paapi bichua...may not have ever wanted to stay that long being danced upon as much as it were in school events ( some outsorced from folk, country, villages) to more filmy numbers, la bollywood ishtyle...then some of those soppy rock songs...
Till date the song 'hungry eyes' from the movie Dirty Dancing only reminds me of the terrace top grooving in the wee hours of a misty morning in a friend's house,while eating bread and butter, and some leftover cheese macaroni, but never the actual song from the film. But i'd like that image to remain..cos "Those were the days ..." and it leaves a smile, like a whisper.
Songs are many...and if I start...I must just get stuck and then chew my own brains up 'cos I'll just have to forget some line, somewhere, and then start haunting the rest of you out here..
Has any song like this transported you back to somewhere, that can just bring on the 'sigh' now??? Let me know...who knows we might just have crossed paths somewhere