Every one of us, who has the opportunity to look back to childhood days will agree that those were the best days of our life. When we were children we mimicked our elders. We played with kitchen items, cooked foods, prepared fake tea and coffee and offered them to all the elderly guests visiting home. I can remember my childhood in many ways. As there was no technology around, the days were very innocent. Playing games and reading books were part of our lives. Whenever I remember my childhood days I become nostalgic about the presence of ‘papers’ in my life. Papers were around me, in plenty. I did not know how to read from a high-end mobile phone or iPad! My dad used to buy lots of books with all kinds of pictures on them. Books were very attractive those days. We learnt names of flowers, animals, creatures, fishes, birds, all kinds of vehicles, foods, fruits, from books. The pictures were so attractive and colourful to win the heart of any child. I used to keep all my books and notebooks very nicely, taking so much care of all of them like they are my own children. The new season in school, the arrival of new books, notebooks and covering brown papers. Who can forget those days of our life! All throughout the year my every textbook, notebook and pencil box was looking new. I set examples for all my other friends and for my sisters too that how to maintain study materials. The secret of over caring was the smell of the new books or new papers. I always have fallen in love with that smell. I still remember opening the new books very slowly and taking them upwards near to my nostrils and a deep breathe…..Ahh!! How I say, how I loved you!!
That smell of a new book!
I was afraid if I reopen the books frequently then I will lose that smell. The innocence of childhood it was! Now whenever I remember, I smile. My favourite books were handwriting books where I used to learn cursive writings and practised writing to improve my handwriting. The drawing book was very attractive as some figures were always drawn on it and We had to draw the same on the other side of the page. So I was always curious to see what are the figures drawn on it. When we grew up the colour papers entered into our life. We made so many materials out of colour papers. Come any festival and we were ready with scissors and colour papers to prepare decorative pieces. The joy of creating designs with all friends together cannot match any luxury. There was a subject called work education where we learnt to make greeting cards and invitation cards using coloured papers. So many story books, cartoon books like Tintin, Phantom, Mandrake, magazines, sports magazines were part of our life. I can remember the paper packets of grocery shops. We never knew plastic bags. Either there were jute, cloth or paper bags to carry things. We were not knowing anything about conservation of forests or save trees. Never had we predicted the environmental pollution in our childhood. So, never anyone pushed forward the concept of the paperless way of life, what we are practising now.
Who could forget the rainfall, water clogging and our excitation of making paper boats!! Lovely paper boats of various sizes and shapes. All children used to come out with paper boats after a round of rainfall, floating them in the water and watching the rainbow up in the sky. Beautiful memories! I don’t see, nowadays children enjoying their childhood in this way. We are losing the nature, the natural beauty, the natural life. Slowly we are moving towards ‘paperless’ days- digital life is taking over. How the life would be without papers? Will we lose the smell of a new book? I can’t guess anything. Within few years I have experienced lots of changes. With time, ‘natural’ is replaced by ‘artificial’. Maybe the days are not far away when we, the older will miss papers but the younger will enjoy a digital life!
Slowly we are moving away from nature, aren’t we??