Summer is almost over. The days of sweltering heat are broken up by sudden bursts of rain. Is it the monsoon? Or the winds receding from the north? I don’t know. I never paid much attention in Geography class. In fact, I never liked Geography.
I miss summer vacations. Yes, it is summer now and I am on a vacation (a perpetual one if I so desire). But it is no match for the summer vacations I had in school. Summer meant two months of lying around and doing nothing. When I was in school we never vacationed anywhere fancy for the summer. It was always Tirunelveli for a week every year. The fanciest place I went was Ooty and Kodaikanal. But the rest of the holidays were spent watching an unhealthy amount of television and eating copious amounts of food.
I did attend the ubiquitous ‘summer classes’. I dabbled my hand in painting for a while and never returned to the paint brush after that. I went for swimming classes three summers in a row. Considering that I was in the water most of the time I couldn’t wear my glasses so I did not exactly make a lot of friends. I was more preoccupied with squinting my way through the water and making sure I didn’t bang my head in to somebody else’s.
My mother could never stand the sight of me lazing around the house. So, after swimming it was tennis for the next few years. Tennis involved a lot of wearing short skirts and running around. I loved it. My dad, not so much. And since I got to keep my glasses on, I made a few friends and met one of the weirdest girls I’ve ever seen in my life.
All these semi-exciting summer vacations gradually came to an end thanks to tenth standard and the attack of the Public Exams. And from then on, summer vacations were filled with preparing for the twelfth standard Board Exams. Although I did visit a few countries in between, they were never a match for the summers of my childhood.
During college, summers meant studying for semesters that were scheduled on days when the school kids had their vacations. So I had to study amidst screaming neighbor kids and had to withstand the temptation to watch the ‘summer blockbusters’ on Sun TV.
Although I love summer, I am a winter girl at heart. My mother says this is because I was born during one of the rainiest Octobers. Every summer my body reacts to the heat in disturbing ways. Two years back my face was entirely covered with heat boils. Nothing I did or ate or applied on my face made it go away. But once the heat reduced so did the boils. Thank God they left no scars. This year, the heat boils have spread to my scalp and neck and other weird parts of my body. But this is the effect of eating an obscene amount of mangoes.
And thanks to the daily power cuts, I don’t think I will be missing this summer all that much. As much as I love summer I hate the sweat and the heat and the permanently sticky skin.
I am so glad I don’t have to travel two hours every day in a bus full of heat and dust anymore. Four years of that was more than enough.
If you are stuck in traffic at this time of the year because of ‘Metro Rail/Mono Rail’ work (last year it was bridge work) my condolences to you.