Remembering Rose Day

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Every house has a whole pile of books, newspaper cuttings, photographs, memorabilia and greeting cards accumulated over the years. Its been the same with Pravin and I. We have collected so much stuff over the years that it takes up a whole cupboard at our parents'. Mom leaves the annual chore of discarding what is not needed, organizing and keeping the space (earmarked for this) clean to us. Very little goes out. It is funny how one gets nostalgic about a lot of things they weren't so crazy about the first time around. We relive those years during these cleaning sessions and decide it is worth keeping and that's how the pile keeps getting bigger and bigger until we finally ran out of space.

So this year, mom took it upon herself to clean the "junk" as she called it. And today she spent a good lot 4 hours doing that. Believe me, most of the stuff went back in like the newspaper cutting that said I stood first in our district in 12th Std exams and so on. And the invitation where mom was felicitated for my performance and so on.

Midway through the cleaning session, she pulled a white envelope from a bunch of similar envelopes and read aloud "Rotary Club, Trichy..something". All of them were dated Dated 17th February, 1999, and on them were written the words "Rose Day" and "PINK" inside a box.

Mom : "Do you know what these white envelopes are?"
I : " written?"
Mom opens the envelope and reads: "Happy Birthday from S..Dated 17th Feb 1999"

All of them are marked PINK on the envelope. There are about 5 of them. Do you need them? I know what they are now..after a moment I replied " you can do away with them now."

If you are a RECTian, it shouldn't take long to guess what those envelopes were. In 1999, Rose Day was celebrated on 17th Feb. "Rose Day" was organised by STEP TREC club every year to celebrate Valentine's Day. They had roses delivered between the students across hostels with personalised messages sealed in envelopes labelled PINK (for friendship), YELLOW, WHITE (for Peace), RED (you know for what) and BLACK (for enemity). The event was fun for some to play pranks, some yearned for it to profess their love, for some 'psychos' it was just another day, for some there was lot to gossip on who exchanged what and for some it mattered who was crowned to have got the maximum no. of roses..I forget the terms..Some long lasting relationships. friendships, some that turned into marriages were made this day as some reading this post might agree.

Well well for me to open those bunch of envelopes this Valentine Day eight years later was going down the memory lane..If this is not coincidence, then what is?

Updated: I got a note from a friend (anonymity maintained) on this post who has seen Rose Days from close is an excerpt of the message

Ah, rose day... getting up early in the morning to go to some god forsaken market in Trichy to buy hundreds of yucky-looking roses. Going to the stadium to sort them into colors, to create the black roses by bundling up thorns ....