Sitting, 1st row: L to R 1) My brother Dr. Lakshminarsu 2) Myself
Sitting, 2nd row: L to R 8) Dr. Rajendra Prasad the first President of India
Standing, 1st row: L to R 3) My mother Smt. Eshwaramma
Standing, 2nd row: L to R 3) My father Sri N. Bhaskarachary
Yellandu Club of Kothagudem was a big source of entertainment to us for 27 years. Every month and all through every year there used to be many celebrations and activities in the Club. Every Sunday night we used to see a Hindi or English movie there. Depending on the season the movies used to be screened indoors or outdoors - close to the Swimming pool or at the Tennis courts. On weekdays we used to have two ‘Club days’ when there was hectic activity at the Tennis courts, Billiards room, Shuttle badminton court, Table tennis room, Swimming pool, at the playing card tables and the Bar. Apart from all these facilities we enjoyed, we also played our own games in childhood like Hide and Seek. We also had a good Reading room with several Indian and International Magazines and a good Library. A variety of snacks used to be served on the ‘Club days’. We used to have Republic day and Independence Day celebrations and grand dinners. For Deepavali and on Christmas Eve we used to have games and prizes for the children followed by dinner. We used to get a variety of crackers as gifts which we used to burst around the swimming pool. On Christmas evening Santa Claus used to appear at the well decorated Xmas tree on stage and give away gifts to us. For Dasara we used to have a daylong outdoor picnic at some scenic place around Kothagudem. On New Year Eve there used to be a Fancy dress competition followed by some entertainment, dinner and celebrations up to midnight. On most of these occasions we used to play Tambola and Whist drive. My brother and sister always won prizes in Fancy dress competitions; it was always a first prize to my brother. Apart from these celebrations there used to be many more parties at the club when the children of members got married or some dignitaries were visiting Kothagudem or Singareni Collieries and then some or the other parties like a Welcome or Farewell party.
The group-photograph at the top of this article is of 4th July 1955 when Dr. Rajendra Prasad the first President of India visited our Club. An enlarged copy of this photograph still adorns the front hall of the Club, even now after 54 years. The color photos show some areas of the Club. The black and white photographs are of my brother – Dr. Lakshminarsu and my sister – Hemalatha in some prize winning Fancy dresses.
It is just not the above events I remember but also those I have enjoyed at the club as a toddler, the See-saws, the Merry-Go-Round, the Swings and Slides and the Train with an Engine and Coach on rails; driven by any elderly boy by pedaling, though these equipment were taken off the club premises may be before I was 10 years old. Good and happy times are never forgotten.
P.S. You may click on the following link to reach several of my photo-articles / blog posts on Kothagudem, Singareni Collieries, Bhadrachalam, Godavari River, Parnashala, Kinnerasani and Papikondalu:http://srisrilara.blogspot.in/2013/08/list-and-links-to-my-blog-posts-on.html