It is so touching to remember Nalinidi.
1. I was under her guidance for one year in class VI or VII though I never had the misfortune of being punished by Nalinidi for any reason what-so-ever unlike Bisshojitda not because I was an obedient student but more because I was more tactful knowing Nalinidi’s reputation as a strict teacher and always appeared as a goody goody boy at her class! Perhaps Bisshojitda missed that trick of survival in Patha Bhavana of those days! But, even then, her’s was the only class where we had to put brown paper covers to all our books and exercise books; and they were always maintained very nicely.
2. Nalinidi used to live in our vicinity at Ratanpalli. In Puja vacation, we ( the para boys) used to go to the neighbours’ houses at Vijaya Dasami, went for an elaborate ‘Pronam’ -no not actually in reverence but more in anticipation for an exciting sweet dish that was supposed to follow. In other times, we systematically avoided Nalinidi as we always felt a bit afraid to encounter her. But on Bijoya Dasami day, Nalinidi’s house were our favourite (and often the first choice venture) as after the ‘Pronam’ she always treated us fabulously with plenty of sweets. She was a great soul in such times!
3. I personally have a very special memory related to Nalinidi. I was a frequent climber to the ‘Gab’ tree at Bakulbithi when the fruits riped along with folks like Bhup Narayan Singh and others. In addition to this I must proclaim with fair amount of pride that I was quite a master in climbing trees, and I could be visible atop all sort of trees like Bokul, Krishna Chura, Bot, Mango, Tentul, Guava, Narkel and even Kul to name a few with fair amount of confidence and expertise.
In one such venture atop the ‘Gab’ tree, where I was the sole monkey in late morning, suddenly I found Nalinidi calling out “Shubhashis, gach theke neme eso”-looking straight at me from ground. I really went blank, and fell down from the tree from almost 1rst floor roof height instantly! That was the only time I ever fell down from a tree in my life (note:-I still climb trees to photograph flowers at the age of 53!). Luckily all my bones were intact; but that event put Nalinidi into a great embarrassment – which I enjoyed thoroughly. It was the only blemish in my tree climbing venture till date!
Nalinidi was great. My humble respect & Pronam to her.
She would decide who should join next “Sahitya Sobhaa” & as such will direct us accordingly, I was her bate few times in my days.
I remember a funny but very serious matter – in one winter morning from new Patha Bhaban Chatrabas ( Present One) i was walking draped in quilt (LEP) towaeds Sungha Sadan to sound the Rising Bell at 4 am as Ghontial, on my return I found ‘Sroddheyo Nalinidi was with few girls of my class was sitting on bedi on the corner opposite Segun Tree near Old Library (Now Patha Bhaban office), I was rebuked by her & was told to take the Quilt (LEP) off, but I had only Undergarment on !! I did warn her but I had to obey her orders in front of Girls of my class & you could imagine what happened ……….
Such fond memories from you all!
Tapasdar golpota khub mojar 🙂
Nalinidir moto prokito shikhika aj biral er tai hoito biral Bishudar moto chhatro!…….
Srila Chatterjee comments in facebook-
“Sahitya sobha to besh jome utheche!”
This was in 1954. Nalinidi was my first bengali teacher in Santiniketan . I had the good fortune of being taught by her in class VI & VII. Then it was Goshaiji for class VIII. Both teachers laid a very strong foundation for the language. That was academic. She also affected my personal development in many ways. For many years Nalinidi lived in Sri Sadan and became the defacto super of the particular wing that I was assigned to. She was an ardent devotee of Rama Krishna and her way of life was imbued with his teachings and way of life. She did not hesitate to impart that philosophy to us girls. If she asked you to step into her room, you were usually in trouble but what I remember most about that time is fragrance of some incense, an altar for her gods and cleanliness of the room. She taught us to have a strong moral compass, be compassionate and kind to each other
, live simply and not to be egotistic. All this is somewhat personal however it is another aspect of a brilliant, demanding and dedicated teacher.
Just read your “homage” to Nolinidi.
What you’ve written is so honest and powerful that it transcends all the the years and touches the reader.
If I am not mistaken you came from Kolkata with a different educational system. Submersing in the Santiniketani Bangla style must’ve been challenging! I am sure that the combination of Gosaiji and Nolinidi was like a one-two punch that drilled Bangla forever in you.
My mom and Nolini di were good friends. During kinder gentler moments she used to lament to my mom that she was not sure if the kids are growing up right!! I became convinced of her contribution to my life when I began to write in Bangla…and still believe that she was a great teacher in all aspects of life.
With sincerest regards
Nalinidi was my favorite teacher in Patha Bhavan. She made her class very interesting and I always loved attending her class. She was also involved in many Patha Bhavan student activities like picnic, ananda mela and sahitya shabhas. I remember once we went on a trip to Massanjore with our class and Nalinidi and Ajitda were in the trip as guardians. The trip went well until the truck we rode broke down about ten miles from home. We all had to walk home and Nalinidi kept us going with a lot stories as we walked. At later years she was our neighbor at Ratanpalli and I met her at her house a few times.
‘Nalinidi’ ke ami dekhini. Shunechi onar ‘Khnyakani’ onekei kheyechen ebong mone rekhechen. tabey sabar galpo o barnona pore ‘Nalinidi’ rsundar chabi amar mone anka hoye roilo.
Sobaike onek dhonnobad…amar chotto kobita ta porar jonno…. eto loke je comment korechen tar mane hocchey je bhalo hok kharap hok oi chotto manushti amader monke narate paarten….
abar janai onek dhonnobad …bishesh kore Sukul / Bhaiya ar Boltu (Prosit Mukherjee) ke… ei shundor muktodhara ke banchiye rakhar jonno!!!!!
Diyali Lahiri comments in facebook-
Amar khatay eto complain likhediten (Make diye soi korate hoto) je amar theke onar lekhatei khata bhore gelo.
You must be logged in to post a comment.