‘Did you lose your heart in the gutters,’ read one of the posters of MCC Global Reunion 2013.
The first of its kind in the 175-year-old history of the college saw about a 1000-member alumnus and their spouses from places as far as Canada and Hong Kong to villages in Madurai.
Everyone there was getting back to the college after decades to revisit the campus attractions once again, be it the deep woods of the 365-acre college grounds, the architecture and even its famous gutters.
In fact on Saturday night, one could spot many in the 50-60 age group, wandering alone though the many dark avenues around the college, reading every little poster coming their way, taking a photograph or capturing the entire spectacle of decorated trees and pavements lit specially for the occasion on their video cameras.
But it was not just the woods and the beauty that everyone had to recall about their college life. former Deputy National Security Advisor, Leela K Ponappa, found the love of her life at MCC where she did her post graduation. After her graduation, she remembered, she had a choice between IIM -Calcutta and MCC. Her train ticket was already booked for Kolkata when she talked to one of the professors at the MCC. She immediately cancelled the ticket and joined the college. “It was a decision I will never regret,” she said.
Ponappa, who was at the occasion with her husband, reminisced how at the very room she was standing, the Anderson Hall, she had written one of her last exams. “I was sitting at a corner there,” she pointed out. “Everything else has changed but not Anderson Hall. It is just the same,” she added, with a bright smile.
“MCC would always let you be. Even if you were not among those who gave the best results in the exams, you would learn to grow your own way. There was space for everyone here,” she said.
Jacob Mathew, executive editor of the Malayala Manorama, remembered the long association that his family had with the institution right from the time of Revered Miller who founded the college. He recollected his grandfather’s words about how Reverend Miller had supported him when he had struggled with mathematics.
From how his father had to end his ‘passion’ for songs when in between a choir song when his father was ardently singing away, the choir master turned to him and said “Mathew Stop Talking”, to his and his predecessors night expeditions on the college grounds, the memories were afresh.
But what many remembered with the fondest of memories was, in fact, the ragging sessions. From conversing with statues to serving as butlers to senior students, there were several instances that brought a bout of laughter on many faces, decades after leaving college.
But not many could claim to have had a ragging session as rewarding as that of actor-director- writer Prathap Pothan, whose acting skills were discovered during one such sessions. “I began my acting on this stage,” he said. Thus went the stories, many of which continued way into the night. Some had chosen to stay at the same hostels that they had resided when they were students.