“The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.” – Psalm 126:3 (NIV)
“I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” – Psalm 27:13 (NIV)
The Four Horsemen? Wow!
That Metallica song from Kill ‘Em All 1983 album, yeah I knew it!! James Hetfield and Dave Mustain with their guitar romping and stomping the stage? Lars Ulrich on the drums with his fast, aggressive thrash beats, clean and fast double bass and heavy drum fills? Cliff Burton with his ‘Rickenbacker 4001’ bass guitar showcasing his used of wah-wah pedal in that particular song not commonly used by other bass guitarists and by him in other songs? Yes, yes, I knew it!! That remarkable thrash, speed metal and very fast intro with their effects and distortions? Wait wait, my friend.. Step on the brake pedal!
Ric Flair, Arn & Ole Anderson and Tully Blanchard? Those professional wrestlers who usually had most of the titles in the NWA (National Wrestling Alliance), and who often bragged about their success in the ring and with women in their interviews? Not exactly! No!
The four riders in the last book of the New Testament of the Bible called the ‘Book of Revelation of Jesus Christ to Saint John the Evangelist’? Where in most accounts the riders were symbolized as Conquest,War, Famine and Death riding in white, red, black, and pale horses respectively? Those guys who ride out when the “book” or “scroll” in God’s right hand is open, the first four of the seven seals by The Lamp of God, or Lion of Judah (Jesus Christ)? Wait up dude, not about them either, those guys will ride out after the rapture.. Wait for the rapture if you really like to see them :grin:
Hey! I am trying to blog something I shared with three of my good friends: Immanuel, Joseph and Richard. Not exactly like the Pact made by ‘Three Doctors’ Dr. Rameck Hunt, Dr. Sampson Davis and Dr. George Jenkins from Newark, New Jersey, USA who are now a group of African-American motivational speakers, authors, and doctors. During high school, those three guys made a pact to get through high school, college, and medical school successfully. Serving a desirable model. Yes, representing the best of its kind. Exemplary, I must add.
The three of us attended Sielmat Christian Higher Secondary School except for Richard who studied in Shillong and after passing out twelve standard and while staying in the state capital for medical entrance coaching he became one of our friends. We all dropped mathematics after we passed eleven standard because it was too damn hard and we didn’t find the necessity for a doctor wannabe to be a mathematician.
So. mathematics gone all we can do was pumped in as much as our brains could hold biology, physics and chemistry. And, be ready for years of grueling physical and mental readiness for the entrance test and constant failure without knowing/ thinking how difficult it will be to become one of the most *respected citizen of the society (*I am just using the term ‘respected’ here because it is the way this ‘vai-people’ called themselves if they are a doctor, in no way we consider ourselves respectable. We are just the same local guy, playing guitar, roaming around, eating paan and laughing over silly stuff around us). Eventually, we all did pass the twelve standard examinations and the medical entrance too.
The Rent House & The Stay:
I can clearly remember that day I went to the state capital with Joseph and Immanuel’s mother in search for a rent house so that us boys can have a room to sleep, to study to cook for ourselves, literally a place affordable for our parents to pay the rent and us to call home for the next six months: a place for us to squeeze together.
We moved in after we cleared the entrance to one of the best medical coaching centers that time, ‘Sachdeva New P.T. College’ about an hour far by foot from our new rental house. Our rental house is not very big: two rooms of exact size on the third floor of an apartment as I put it now: one for the kitchen and the other our bedroom, sitting room and study room. We had one tube light, one bench, one chair, and our trunk boxes. We all slept together spreading our mattresses on the floor. I still remember Joseph in the middle me on the west end and Immanuel at the east end.
Water was the problem and no proper bathroom and most of all waste disposal system. To this day I would think that woman from whom we rent that room to stay was selfish because she didn’t care about us as long as she gets our monthly rental. But, somehow maybe we don’t care either we stayed there for six months.
Can you imagine what types of food or dish we cooked? Well we all mastered the art of cooking ‘Manta-chawk–hruoi’ (brinjal with fermented fish cook in water with salt) and we all liked it. Whenever we talk to each other on the phone or through video call which is very often we never missed that part of our life with manta-chawk–hruoi. Morning-evening: manta-chawk–hruoi.. manta–chawk–hruoi.. manta–chawk–hruoi.. Manta-chawk–hruoi. Sometimes we cooked meat too then our master chef Joseph will step in, did the cooking and we will wash the plates and the pots. There was routine for who will cook, wash and clean the floor. One thing I will not miss writing about here is our ‘TEAM PAWISA’ (caution money) as we put in that time. With that we ate paan, bought mosquitoes repellent coils, candles and anything needed.
Richard stayed alone about thirty minutes by foot far from us. He would come over to sleep and eat with us during Saturday night or during holidays and bandhs. We would play card games where I will team up with Immanuel and the other two in another team. I still remember some code words we used ‘NEI-KAWP’ in one particular card game which I actually don’t know the name of the game in English.
During all those times we never missed reading our Bibles and pray every time before we study. Never for once did we drink beer/ alcohol during that stay which till today I continue. Some people find it hard to believe, me not drinking even once in my life? But my three other friends know it well.
The mobile phone was something for the future, and our communication with our parents was either we go to them or they come to us. All we had was Joseph’s CD Walkmen and a borrowed speaker blasting in full volume Iron Maiden and Metallica’s song.
Every month all of us or one of us went home to get ration as we called it that time from home. Our parents visited us occasionally and if they did the night they left us we slept early or can’t study because we usually stuffed every empty space in our body with meat.
The card trick Joseph would not shared with us unless we paid him his price of one zarda paan per tricks. The occasional group fighting of our neighbors, the fluctuating electric bill we got every month, the next house guy who studied the whole day every day who we named him ‘LEKHA THIEMPA’ Richard’s fried pork oil, Immanuel (
CHANCE) flirting/romancing with one girl from his class, the fashion show where Immanuel would show off his figure, the teenage girl name Jennifer whom we never talk to, the most irritating ‘He-u Lien’s dog’. The ‘PLACK TRUM’ (guitar pick) our first floor Thadou-pa bragged about the night we watched Mac Pie’s concert CD at his house. The singing of Lalbieklien’s ‘A ruokte in ka hmangai che’ and Hrangneisang’s ‘Maamte ka tawn mangin’ in my guitar after every dinner. The wall poster Joseph wrote, “Our house is small no room for a millionaire but there is room for love and that’s all we care.”
Joseph and I had a real battle trying our best to fight off our pimples, acne scar marks that time, then came ‘No Marks Face-pack’ to the rescue it did help. We used it every day after lunch and it became our daily ritual.
I think honestly that time we all missed our home, friends and parents very much, to add to that Joseph has his this pillowcase print that said,“Home Sweet Home”. Because it was our first stay outside our home for that long period of time especially for me and Immanuel. But it was worth it: The friendship, the memories and the dream we achieved.
The Coaching and The Exams:
Richard and I were in Runner 1, Joseph and Immanuel in Runner 2. Our class starts at 6:00 in the morning Joseph and Immanuel’s class at 1:00 in the evening. It was four hours long one hour for each subject: Physics, Chemistry, Zoology and Botany.
Let me add this so as to bring back some memories lost in time, most of our teachers there were from central India and South India. I hope you can imagine the accent they will have. Some science terms like Stratified as ‘astra–ti-fied’ and Ascomycetes as ‘As-kaw–mi–ci-ties’. We would imitate and laugh out brains out. Oh! There was this teacher (from IIT) who taught us physics boy, how much we hate that guy, we all have our own reasons to hate him though.
The assessment we gave every Sunday and after like a month or two never continued to give, the marks we scored? Very very funny, sometimes looking back, why did our parents believe so much in us? Even when we could not answer correctly most of the questions why they did support us, prayed for us and did the best they could for us? But, we also did or at least tried our best not to be at the bottom of the assessment result.
Somehow after much effort, year lost, never giving-up spirit and endless struggling and the prayer, monetary, physical and mental support from our families, God blessed each of us with a seat in a medical college. Immanuel in Gauhati Medical College & Hospital (GMCH), Joseph and Richard in Silchar Medical College & Hospital (SMCH) and me in Jorhat Medical College & Hospital (JMCH).
Someday if God’s grace continues to shine upon us so that we pass out from medical colleges to have our own pads for prescription we will talk about this in the presence of our wives and children: our lives, our struggling, reflecting back all those fond memories and thank GOD and the sacrifices of our FAMILIES (parents, brothers and sisters) for it.
We are indeed ‘THE FOUR HORSEMEN’ watching each other’s back, never leaving anyone behind but to help the weak and praying for each other until we reach our destination and beyond that be good friends forever.
I really miss you all very much. GOD bless us.
(Jorhat, 18th April, 2013)