Kinda like Harry Potter, but not…

I remember my first day at GNFC very well. We arrived at lunchtime, after a grueling train, bus and taxi ride up to Mussoorie. They were serving Rajmah Dal, chapatis and rice in the upstairs, well-lit senior dining hall. The food was good – I made burritos out of the beans and chapatis and thought, if this is school life, it aint so bad. Then we got our school numbers and house assignments – this was all very foreign for me, as I was only familiar with US public schools. There were Nalwa House (gold), Ranjit House (sky blue) and Attari House (maroon). The next year, Ajit House was formed, and was navy blue. I remember being psyched because someone told me I was in Attari – who wouldn’t want to be in the house named after the videogame!

In actuality the houses refer to Sikh heroes/martys: Maharaja Ranjit Singh, Hari Singh Nalwa, Shaam Singh Attari and Sahibzada Ajit Singh… snooooze…  and, well, I did not end up in Attari house. But whatever house you did wind up in, the kids in other houses always seemed to have more fun, be more together, get more food, less beatings, etc.

Here’s how I remember it breaking down: Ranjit house had all the goody-two-shoes, clean kids. Attari House had all the aggro athletes, but not as many smart kids. Nalwa had the brainy kids, but not much athletic clout. And Ajit house usually came 4th in everything, but somehow turned losing into solidarity for one another.

Attari House at PT competition.
For this most ridiculous “sport”, we had to get up early and practice every single day: Dung, tak-tak, Dung, tak-tak, Dung, tak-tak…

One Reply to “Kinda like Harry Potter, but not…”

  1. here’s how I remember my first day.
    for some reason, I didn’t go up to the school until the following day after most of the other kids that I was with went up.
    the first thing I saw was the down field, and it was nothing but dirt. I had been imagining the lush green lawns and horses, just as I had been told the school was like. It wasn’t like that at all.
    I then was told that there was no more room in the dorms for me and so didn’t have a bed or anything. I had to spend my first night there in my older sister’s dorm, sharing her bed. she had been up at the school a day or so before me and already knew all the ropes.
    she didn’t hesitate to tell me promptly as soon as it was dark that the school was haunted.
    so, now I had no dorm and was immediately scared of the ghosts.
    thanks alot!
    then the next day, since there was no more room in any of the dorms, I was put in a small room with a few other girls in the boys dorm. with the worst matron.
    she caned me once simply for wanting to leave the dorm one afternoon–that might have been my first caning, I don’t remember.
    so, needless to say, my dreams of riding horses on the lush lawns were instantly dashed and the harsh realities were set for me on that first day.
    it sucked!

Comments are closed when a post is over 30 days old.