By Rishan Danthasinghe
A school van stops in the traffic…. A boy locks his eyes on a gaudy black and blue piece of cloth being swayed outside that van. He creeps towards the van…. In a fraction of a second he flicks that flag and runs flat out in the traffic…. mission accomplished!!!! Yees yees yees, it’s the Roy-Tho… it’s the season of the year all Royalists and Thomians have been anticipating eagerly, also not forgetting our female counterparts….
What comes parallel to the big match season??? ring a bell…??? not yet?? Ever had the experience of seeing girls go WILD over boys jumping in to their schools during Big match season or feeling the adrenaline rush through your body as you run when being chased by a cop who is trying to hammer you with his batten ???
WELCOME to the world of TRUCKING!!!! – A Landmark in a senior student’s school life. They flock around the little heavens down Flower road, Boyd place and maybe few international schools, from the previous Friday to the big match week till the day before that big event hits the town. Most of the time its the person who has had the most experience in trucking leads the pack, strengthens the spirits of newbies and boosts the morale of every student.
I remember my first time in trucking… it was about 10.30 a.m, we were flocking near the inner flower road. We sensed something unuseal from the distance… it was our college van!! As it was nearing us, our principal sir along with bunch of teachers came into visibility. Some of the newbies like myself were shaking like leaves because we knew that we were in deep trouble!!! At that moment our skipper brought us down to our feet by saying “machan don’t panic, just act cool” and just as principal sir opended the door our so called hero screamed “Duwapaaaannnn”!!!!! in a fraction of a second we split like bees!!!!! I will never forget a crazy time like that…. Also there were times when those “walle kollo” come all the way to Colombo hiring a bus for 4000Rs or SOOORs, and went empty handed home when they were caught by the cops. On the other hand, it’s walking distance for us!! Even sometimes it’s us who have to help them to jump in to girls’ schools… They still have a lot to learn regarding this subject. But at the end of the day, nobody is left behind school wise because it’s nothing but pure team work…. Like the old saying goes “There’s no Royal without St. Thomas’ and no St. Thomas’ without Royal…..?
Not only the guys and girls enjoy doing this but also the teachers do!!!!! Girls go wild with the presence of us Noble beings and begin to think “hey it’s not fair!!! Guys wander in our class rooms and school premises and we girls must have the right to do so too”. Some times our own hierarchy students are put in to the girl schools to keep the situation under control, which makes it even easier for us!!!!! Sometimes teachers from those schools seek co-operation of our teachers….that’s where our teachers drop down to those schools to say “ok ok boys… time to leave this place peacefully” and we being the loyal souls to our Alma mater, leave the place peacefully giving a R-0-Y-A-L cheer….
Once we came across this really nice teacher in the little heaven down the flower road, who followed us every where… and one of our fellow student asked her “miss are you guiding us???” with an innocent smile she replied “yes dear, I’m leading you the way out!!!” Or sometimes funny things happen like meeting our own parents who teacher in those schools and saying Hi to them, where all the girls become puzzled!!! Then comes the all important cycle parade, (coma) debate and soforth…
Then the big event starts off… nowadays it has become one of the biggest social events than merely a bigmatch. It’s a place where old boys and whole student population meetup to speak of “their time”. It’s a birth place to the SB’s concept, namely Booze, Birds and Baila. It may be a place where a student tastes his first sip of alcohol, you find here and there guys getting high till the whole world revolves around them. Then suddenly you see pretty ladies in vibrant colours. It’s obvious that they wouldn’t have spend much money for clothes, considering the length of the garment!!! One may also wonder if these angels have mistakenly come here while they were on there way to a fashion show!! It’s nothing but whole theree days of bird watching!!! (of course we DON’T miss the match a single second). Then once you become familiar with the atmosphere you start singing baila one by one non-stop!!!! Even sometimes you are not aware where the words are coming from, as long
as they get along with the tune you sing it. There are times when things get heated and once in a while you find a chair or two flying over your head and one guy beating the other without knowing the reason… Even while concentrateing on all of these you suddenly remember to watch when ever you hear “Ooohs” and “aaahhs”.
At the end of all three days students of both schools sing school anthems putting there heart and soul into it. But still it really does’t matter if your school wins or looses because it’s the spirit that they live for…..
The next Monday you find the graveyard atmosphere in school because either students are wornout or they are sad because the festive season is over…..
Mmmm…. .those sweet memories I will never forget……
long live the world’s longest running cricket encounter, Battle of the Blues…..