When I came across this laudable initiative by blogadda.com ,asking the bloggers to blog about the men who have stood up for women so that they can be honoured, I went into a rewind mode.
The incident I am about to narrate happened nearly 20 years back but it will forever remain in my heart and memory because I was a first hand witness of boys turning to men. The year was 1993 or 1994 , I am not sure.The city was Chennai. I was in the eighth standard. We were a class of 42, around 20 girls and 22 boys. It was a usual class having the standard boys vs girls fight at the same time experienceing first crushes.
It was somehere during the second term, that 7 girls and around 10 biys from our class were selected to attend a programme where a speech was to be delivered by a prominent person. We had one teacher accompanying us. It was decided that we will use the public transport to go the auditorium. At that time our school did not have school buses on its own and arranging a van or a mini-bus was also not viable.
Since the start-point of the bus was near our school, we had no problems in reaching the venue comfortably. The programme lasted for about 2 hours and was so boring that all of us were getting restless. Heaving a big sigh of relief when it was over, we rushed to the bus stop in a hurry to reach home.
The bus was crowded with the office-going crowd waiting to return home. We had left a couple of buses because they all 18 of us could not get in together. After waiting for about half an hour, we got a relatively empty bus and all of us got in.
After a couple of stops, a boisterous gang of about 10 college going boys got in the bus. They were talking loud, telling not-so-decent jokes and even started singing. They were even passing comments on us girls. We were sitting quietly and were looking out of the window and didnt dare to even look at their side. Suddenly, all of them crowded to a seat next to where all of us girls were sitting and started singing.
A couple of minutes later, one of our boys came next to us and started making small talk. He then called his friend as if to support him in an argument he was having with us girls. They then called another for clarification. In that way within matter of minutes , all the 10 of our classmates surrounded us girls, By then the other gang had also gone silent. Our classmates stood next to us forming a protective ring till we reached our stop.
At that moment, I felt the boys turning to men, protecting their classmates. I felt a huge swell of pride for them. They had decided to act smart instead of sitting back and being a spectator. At that time, they were our soldiers.
I lost touch with all my classmates after i shifted cities in the next academic year but thanks to social networking sites, I got in touch with a few of them. None of my classmates remember this incident now, but this had remained in my memory and will continue to be.
I take this opportunity to honour those brave boys who stood by us. Thank you, boys and thank you blogadda for this initiative.