Getting drenched in heavy rain

This happened some time back. It was a pretty cloudy day. I was wearing my school uniform. I used to go in a Maruti Omni van to school along with 5 or 6 other of my friends. In any case, after school, we used to get in a line and holding each others' bags slung on our backs(nothing silly, naughty mind) we used to go to the parking slot, led by the driver who acted as the guide cum head of security and excort.

So that day was special for some reason. It rained when we were coming to school in the morning, only lightly as far as I can remember. By the time we entered school, the rains went for a break. While returning to the van, it held its breath. While our van started off, it started raining very heavily. The windows were ordered to be closed. We did not have automatic window controls then, so breaking the rule now and then was easy. The driver was a good young guy, but his primary job was to drive us safely - so after a while he stopped scolding. We would open the windows open half wide(as far as the van allowed) and stuck our (small) heads out, often two at a time. In 10 minutes we were wet to our hearts content.

There was only one problem in the story - I had a nice and clean raincoat. Which meant that getting drenched was a bad idea. I remember seeing my mom, standing at the door by the porch. It was not exactly a porch, more like a outer door enclosing an internal courtyard, but you get the picture. She was wearing a pink overcoat or gown with flowers and a very stern yet concerned look. In any case, I don't remember wearing it properly. Most probably I did not button it up when the car arrived by our door side. I slid the door of the van open and jumped out, my raincoat hanging on my back. I gently walked to the door, my mother stood aside. I looked down, expecting a furious scolding but did not get any. Not that I can remember now anyway. Had my towels readied and washed and bathed and got dried - with all the care a child can get. It was great.

I was then in class II, the second standard. So naturally I don't remember some of the finer details of the day - except that the Omni was white, Joka was much much greener, our school still had a field to play on, we only had Doordarshan, Computers were pretty much alien, my mother was much younger, my grandmother was alive and so on. But hey, I was 7. Now almost two decades later, I still remembered that day - without a single drop of rain, or anything that could possibly make me go back. Or make me want to go back. I think I know why.

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