Recall those days when you rushed back home, got into your playing shoes and ran off to play. Screen time was only episodes of Tom and Jerry or Ramayana. Childhood days were interactive and playful.
Today children hardly get down and dirty playing outdoor games. Leisure for them is watching cartoons or YouTube videos. Advent of online classes has increased their inclination towards gadgets exponentially. The race to succeed and becoming the best has somehow taken away their childhood.
I believe kids need to play, run, bask in the sun, be injured, fight over who gets to bat first and not just be gadget heads. After all, you do not get to be a child for all your life. Now with kids being home schooled, one can introduce them to this joy and have some family time by engaging in the 90s fun games.
Some of my favorites are:
Pakdam Pakdai as we call in Hindi.
One person was chosen the denner who had to catch hold of the other players and tag them. The first one to be tagged was the new denner.
I still remember running frantically in the neighborhood being scolded by the uncles and aunties. Slyly teasing the denner to come catch us from the corners had its own charm.
The denner when catches the other player, they had to hold hands to make a chain and catch the remaining players. Longer the chain, the more fun it was. Matching each other’s steps and energy level.
The most played game during a school picnic for sure. Tumbling and tripping in the dirty ground to ruin our white uniforms and going home fearing how furious our mom would be looking at it.
- Gully Cricket
“Jiska bat uski batting” was the most used phrase. The bruising of knees, getting the ball out of drainpipes, shattering glasses and then making puppy faces to get the ball back. The nostalgia hits me like a truck.
Asking your mother to draw with chalk was the most dreaded part! Throwing stones and bunny hopping until you step on to a crack wasn’t as easy as it sounds.
- Seven Stones
Stacking the stones back into place was a major task. We ran to save ourselves from being hit by the ball as if our life depended on it. I must say it has taught a lot us team effort and friendly banter among rival teams.
Other games being Kanche (Glass Marbles), 4 Corners, Ankh Micholi (Blind Man’s Bluff), Dog and the Bone, Statue, Musical chairs and many more. Everyone had their personalized names and rules for these games, but playtime was fun for all.
Everyone found happiness in little moments in that era. There was innocence and purity. Having the best gadgets was not a priority. Raising our children with the same innocence is necessary. In my opinion, with so much going on today, kids lose their pristinity. They grow up so fast. We as parents, must make extra effort in order to let the kids be themselves and have a childhood they can recall and reminisce just as we do.
Take advantage of the holidays and have an old school day just to introduce the children to our childhood. You can organize these games in your backyard with desi snacks savored in those days. Bring on the 90s jam and dance the night away.