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60 Things That Defined Your Childhood In India

Horn OK please.

1. Getting a brand-new geometry box was the only good thing about the end of the summer.

And that's also when Nataraj suddenly became everyone's best friend.

2. This is how you decided whether someone deserved your friendship, love, affection, marriage, enmity, or sisterhood.

Mani Karthik / Via

3. There were a lot of top-notch beverages competing for your attention...

Doordarshan /
Go Bazzar /
Tang Today /

But, after a long day of school, nothing was more refreshing than a chilled glass of this:

Tasty Liquid Treats /
Wikipedia Creative Commons / /

4. You didn't have Halloween, but all the "fancy dress" parties more than made up for it.

NVO News / Via

5. This was the No. 1 use of doorways in your house:

Rashid Lohiya / Via

6. Everyone had one of these metal Godrej almirahs somewhere in their house, and it's where the adults hid their mysterious secrets.

OLX Bangalore / Via

7. This dude was terrifying, and you genuinely had nightmares about him. Thanks, Onida.

Onida / Via

But this girl — so relevant, so witty — was (and is) your role model.

Amul / Wikipedia Creative Commons / Via

8. Lunch =

Milton, Home Shop /
Mother Earth Living /

Carried inside of:

Via Home Review /

9. You could recognize these smells anywhere, anytime.

Viec Buon Ban /
Cargo Collective /

And you'll never forget what the solution to a "kamar dard" is:

Modern Time Shelpline Pharma / Via

10. You became a pro at painting and repainting these stylish Batas every few weeks.

Mani Karthik / Via

11. This is what Sundays looked like:

Rank Logos / Via

12. You caused your middle finger some serious harm trying to get good at this:

Wikipedia Commons / Via

13. And you knew the first line of every song, from all your bus antakshari sessions.

Yash Raj Films / Via

14. When everyone had a badminton phase, the coolest kids had Yonex racquets.

Sporty Habits / Via

15. For most of your childhood, you thought this phrase legitimately meant something.

Wikipedia / Via

Same with this bizarre approach to population control:

Flickr: gggggg / Via Creative Commons

16. This was the secret of your energy.

Star Plus / Boost / Via

Unless, of course, you were one of these people:

Complan / Via

Or into one of these:

EMD Home Products /
Shop Hop /

17. Your birthday = a reason to wear your nicest outfit to school and hand out candy to everyone.

Wikimedia Commons /
Exporters India /

18. This was the most delicious thing that anyone could possibly cook in two minutes:

Kukuchku / Via

Seriously, every time you saw this happen on TV, you needed it to happen for you in real life.

Maggi / Via

19. "Elemenopee" was the longest letter in the alphabet.

Zazzle / Via

20. Power cuts were a glorious time when you were exempt from doing homework and had no choice but to go outside and play in the dark.

Caught At 3rd Man / Via

21. As difficult as these were to get open, they were always worth it:

Indian Gifts Portal / Via

And these > M&M's.

Telugu One / Via

22. At some point, you were chased around the house by your mother trying to put oil in your hair.

Parachute / Via

23. Thanks to your various school uniforms, you know words like "culottes" and "pinafores."

Wikipedia / Via

Unless you had one of these stiff-dupatta uniforms.

World Is Round / Via

Either way, "color dress" or "free dress" days were the best days.

St. Joseph's Indian School / Via

24. You learned patience by waiting for your sparklers to light on Diwali.

David Levantis / Via

(That patience came in handy while reloading this questionable toy.)

90s Childhood Memories / Via

25. And you honed your reflexes by dodging water balloons on Holi.

26. There was one of these somewhere in the city, and you got to go there when you needed special books.

Tourist Link /
Mani Karthik /

27. This godsend, masquerading as a digestive pill, was the most delicious thing you would ever eat.

City Mega Store / Via

And this more serious, legit digestive cure would keep your breath foul for days.

India Abundance / Via

28. "Akar bakar Bombay bo..."

90s Childhood Memories / Via

29. These were the most superior "soft drinks."

Indo-Chinese Market /
Wikipedia /

30. These men were in your living room more often than most of your family was.

Hagen Hopkins / Stringer / Via Getty Images

31. There was nothing in the world as mouth-meltingly soft as a Marie Biscuit dipped in hot chai.

And getting the biscuit to your mouth before it broke off and fell in the chai was the greatest challenge of your childhood.

32. Amar Chitra Katha's Birbal was the smartest person you'd ever heard of.

Amar Chitra Katha / Via

And this guy was the stupidest:

Tinkle Comics / Via

33. Whenever a relative came back from a trip abroad, you invariably were gifted some of these:

Wikipedia / Via

34. You could recognize this kid anywhere:

PTI Foods / Via

35. Everyone became an expert boat-maker during the monsoon.

Pressmaster / Via Shutterstock

36. This.

90s Childhood Memories / Via

37. Every Indian girl secretly tried these on from her mom's stash.

Parammount / Via

38. And every Indian boy regularly "borrowed" some of this from his dad:

Wikipedia / Via

39. One hour of your school week was dedicated to social service or "Socially Useful Productive Work."

GIS News Blog / Via

And several hours of the school week were devoted to "book cricket."

Yahoo! Cricket / Via

40. This was a classic torture device used by moms:

Ad Gully / Via

41. This cigarette-shaped candy, as problematic as it is in hindsight, made you feel cool as hell:

iFood / Via

And the first tattoo you ever got was courtesy of these guys:

90s Childhood Memories / Via

42. Before you knew what the word "ambassador" meant, this is all it was:

And your family's first car was probably one of these:

Wikipedia /

43. After school activities = snacks, tuitions, classes, homework, and then finally playing outside with colony friends.

44. You could finish a box of these in one sitting:

Namaste Plaza / Via

And you would regularly beg your parents to buy you these:

45. When some well-meaning relative bought you a laser pointer, you used it to terrorize your neighbors for weeks.

Laser Pointer Forums / Via

46. The first movie you ever saw in 3D:

47. You will never forget the tune of the "washing powder Nirma" song.

Go Bazzar / Via

And "aaya naya ujala, chaar bundhon vaala."

48. You couldn't wait to lick your fingers clean after eating these...

Stork / Via

To get to the best part:

90s Childhood Memories / Via

49. You learned all your business skills by trading cricket cards...

Sports World /
EBay /

Or, more likely, WWE cards.

Mani Karthik / Via

50. You had these stacks of classic soundtracks somewhere in your house.

Justclk / Via

51. Around sixth grade, everyone's hands were constantly covered in ink from learning how to use these:

52. And in seventh grade, everyone got Slam Books and found out who their true friends were.

53. Managing to squeeze a full-sized cricket game into a gully of any width was everyone's special skill.

Sharad Mani / Via

54. Nobody seemed to ever buy these matchboxes, but there were always some lying around.

Mani Karthik / Via

55. This was the most tedious back-to-school activity:

Mani Karthik / Via

Although the end result was pretty satisfying.

90 Childhood Memories / Via

56. Watching these men's sagas was a weekly family activity.

Indian Express / Via

57. Touching your distant relatives' feet was an investment well worth the returns.

Conversing With The Buddha / Via

58. You felt like a professional acrobat every time you climbed into these top berths.

59. And if you ever overexerted yourself with any physical activity, there was always a white powdery savior:

Apollo Pharmacy / Via

60. Every Independence Day, you proudly pinned the tricolor to your school uniform...

Instablogs / Via

...proud to have had the most chaotic, most beautiful, and most memorable childhood of all.

Instablogs / Via

H/t to Mani Karthik's blogpost and this "Nineties Childhood Memories" Facebook page.