Come winter, and I am reminded of what life was like in winters in Shimla of sixties and seventies. Schools and colleges had long vacations and mostly students were free spirits , as they had nothing to do after being promoted to the next class having passed the annual exam held in December. Only students who had to appear in Matric and Higher Secondary Exams in March felt burdened with studies , quite a few of them also attending extra classes for better results. To the Collegiate, studies posed no such burden, as exams were held towards the end of March or early April. My mother ensured that each one of us siblings had a couple of hand woven sweaters and two pairs each of woolen socks during the winters.
Once during one such winter, as a college going student , I decided not to wear any sweater or socks , much to the annoyance of my mother , who tried hard to cajole me into wearing the woolens, already in place for me. But adamant as I was, I spent the entire winter wearing shirt and pajamas. Surprisingly, I had no cold or cough during the entire season , though I had swollen feet which used to itch badly at night. That shows I had enough resistance as a teenager . Now on the threshold of old age (?), I always have to wear woolen socks and a jacket in addition to the sweater and thermal wear to keep myself warm .