What’s the earliest memory you have of your childhood? Most of your firsts’ will be remembered only when you look at the photographs and your mom would be saying “That’s from the day you took your first step” or “That’s on your first day of school”. We don’t vividly remember all these moments. But without a shred of doubt, I can say that what we all do remember is our playtime!!
Let me tell you what mine is, I remember being surrounded by my friends and cousins. We were on the terrace of our building playing hide and seek. These evening hours were the most cherished for me, because I got to play! School over, tuition done, homework completed and then it was time to go out and play with friends!! Though I do not remember each day, I do remember being the most content during this time. It’s the feeling associated with that play hour that stays even now.
Trust me, this is the favorite part of the day for any child. Even in the school timetable the “games” period is the one they all look forward to. What was your favorite game while growing up? Hide and seek? Gully cricket? Snakes and ladders? Ludo? There are so many that even thinking about them is making me grin from ear to ear. I see the children in my colony still play most of these games. There are some kids games that will never run out of fashion. They were very much a part of my childhood and I am positive even my parents grew up playing these. Today let’s look at 4 such kids games which have been in existence since time immemorial and will be a part of every child’s play time.
1. Hide and seek- “Luka chhupi”:
“Ready or not, here I come…” How is it that those words still leave us with an almost involuntary habit to dive underneath the nearest desk in fear and delight? A king among childhood games and will remain so for many years.
2. Solo tag/ Chain tag- “Pakdam pakdi”:
Who doesn’t like this simplest of all games? We inadvertently opt for this when we can’t think of any other game. There are two versions of this though. Solo tag is a one man game where the danner chases and manages to catch one of the players and then there’s chain tag which is like solo tag, but without the isolation anxiety. Once you get tagged by someone who’s “it” you’re part of the chain – and get to chase everyone else around until there’s one left in the corner. Tell me that doesn’t excite you and I’ll say you’ve not had a memorable childhood.
3. Board games– Snakes and Ladders, Ludo, Monopoly, Scrabble:
The thrill of Snakes and Ladders lies in the potential of being swallowed by snakes at every turn. Success was also marked by the ability to climb ladders if you did well (see the non-to-subtle analogy to life there?) Then there’s Monopoly where we used to feel like kings and queens ruling the city and bartering for its portions in exchange of various things. I don’t think these board games will ever run out of fashion just for the reason that they are fun and even provide some learning.
4. Blind man’s buff:
The idea of tying a blindfold on someone then instructing them to walk around and not bump into unforgiving walls/shelves/trees sounds a tad suicidal. Nevertheless this scary-sounding game has provided kids with decades- full of hilarity and bruises, in almost equal proportions.
I am sure most of you are sniffing your noses by now, thinking about these games. We loved to play these and without realizing it back then, created a lifetime worth of memories.
On that note, wish you all a very Happy Children’s Day!!
Hope these helped you relive some of your best childhood memories.
*as published on The Champa Tree