This day that year... (14th Feb 2003-07)
It was known as Rose Day in my alma mater for the very reason that roses were exchanged between the boys and girls. Some were genuine and the rest proxies! These proxies later became the seed to kindle romance between them..;) Whaaatttaaa majja!
This coming Valentines day, our first after marriage, also marks our 8-month wedding anniversary, and I am very much reminded of those "Rose Day" celebrations in my college. This was when the whole hostel (both boys and girls) used to be at the height of liveliness. Preparations for this day were mainly taken care by the "STEP TREC" club. They would put stalls inside the hostel selling Valentine's Day cards and roses. The latter included red, pink, yellow, white and black (we had thorns instead) colour roses.
Our versions for these roses were:
Red stood for Romance/Love
Pink stood for "the ship which never sinks" you guessed it right...Friendship
Yellow stood for Sibling-like love
White stood for Peace
Black stood for Hatred
Those who bought roses were given printed cards which had space to write our message. This came with an envelope which had a box on the top right corner to shade the colour of the rose being sent. Since our college had strict rules forbidding boys and girls from entering each others' hostels, these STEP TREC members acted as the pura, "messengers of love". They collected the roses and cards from both the girls' and boys' hostels and delivered them to their respective destinations. Didn't need any tracking number. So trustworthy were the members (DHL, FedEx laam thothudhu!). Moreover, it was their responsibility to pin the appropriate roses to the cards. Hats off to you guys..!!! You toiled those days even without minding the cycle (monthly) tests just around the corner.
Let me make this clear, I am not very aware of the happenings in the boys' hostel during these days (I have mentioned the reason before), but this is how it happened in our girls' hostel, "OPAL".
The sale of cards would begin 2-3 days before 14th Feb. Most of the girls from 1st year to final year, except those who were very paavam and chamathu, would spring into action!!! There were some genuine "committed cases" who would express their pheelings by sending red rose to each other! But others were the so called maanathai kooru pottu vikkara sincere thozhigal! These friends, in groups, would take great enthu in sending proxy roses to the boys (now you got the sincere point..right?), without worrying about the piles of books to be read for the cycle tests. Oh yeah, and not just "any boy" but to that particular special one with whom the girl is most chaatted with! It could be just one guy or several! (I don't think you want to know how many proxies were sent under my name..do you?) The kavidhai aatral of some in the group came in handy here! They would "smith" the words so well that the reader could really think that the girl had some feelings for that boy! This would be done without the knowledge of the girl, but sometimes even with her acceptance (come on ya..can't she have some fun..or WAIT..did she really have feelings for him and not show it???..whatever)! So once the "love letter" was composed, the initial job of sowing the seed of love was complete! The rest would be dealt by that boy and girl! ;)
From early morning, girls would be anxiously waiting to find how many roses they would be receiving, sometimes even more anxiously than the day before the release of exam results! The club members would break the tension by knocking each door in hostel and delivering the card with roses. The gala time begins thereafter.
We would go room-to-room to see who got what kind of rose and from whom. If that was a RED rose, that was the end of the story! Someone would read the letter aloud for everybody to know how much pheelings that guy has for the girl (it could be a proxy from that guy too). We could see the girl blushing even though she knew that the letter was probably just a proxy. They were some unlucky girls too who received thorns for they might have had some "ruff and tuff" time with some boys. Nevertheless this day was fun every year for many other reasons!
Now, I don't want to paint a picture like I was the heart throb of my batch (I got few red roses on all 4 Valentine's Days during college) since I am very sure all of them were proxies..come on ya..mine is an arranged marriage. In addition, many proxies were also sent under my name thanks to the above-mentioned thozhigal. Sorry guys, if this caused any heartbreak to you..;) I still preserve those cards as part of other senti stuff and am eager to see my hubby's reaction when I show them to him sometime...(they are in India) ;)
The club also honoured the girl and the guy who got the maximum number of red roses by arranging a date for both of them (sounds cool right..when someone else takes care of your date's expense)! Apart from this, they also organised a Rose day night in the barn or EEE auditorium. It was a get-together where songs were played as dedications from both the sides, some shows were conducted and there were good food stalls.
The aftermath of this Rose Day was the very next day in class when the students gossiped about the proxies and true roses shared. From then on, new chaatings would also start! It was always better if these things were not taken to heart and just taken as fun.
Look for the next post...This day this year... in next few days
To all those reading my blog, and to every loved one around the world, I wish you A VERY HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!!
P.S: Look below for the translations:
Pura: Dove bird (In olden days this bird was used as a messenger of love)
DHL, FedEx laam thothudhu: It means "Even DHL, FedEx might not do the job so well"
Chamathu: Very obedient
maanathai kooru pottu vikkara sincere thozhigal: it means "Girl friends who make you feel ashamed of something"
kavidhai aatral: Poetic talent