Year 1986, one of the most special year in our family. It was that year when Solidaire entered our lives. Yes! You are right!! Solidaire T.V.
The ad goes like this,
“Solidaire for sport, Solidaire for Sunday movies,
We want we want good colour, we want we want clear sound,
We know what we want, We want Solidaire. Solidaire…….”
Solidaire evokes quite a few nostalgic moments in me. My parents took the advertisement religiously. It was a revelation to us how much dad was mad for cricket. His curiosity to watch cricket spiked radically that he got TV, to watch 1987 cricket world cup match, a year ahead. Mom was very excited that she could tune into those regional movies every Sunday evenings and Rangoli on Sunday early mornings.
I was very thrilled on that day when Solidaire arrived from the showroom. The package contained a built-in voltage stabilizer with a twin antenna concept including an accessory of 60W stereo. It took 1 full day to setup those and finally Solidaire came to life. Our neighbors were glancing as if it’s a bride entry in her sasural…
It was a 16 inch color TV with an option to tune into 8 channels! From the very next day our home turned out to be a celebration. Neighbors thronged to get a glimpse of it, some enquiring for specifications; few to check on the picture quality; few fascination on the TV cover. Mom did aarthi, distributed sweets, invited her colleagues and lot more. Nonetheless we had tad on our “owner’s pride” because we were the first to possess television in our locality. It was one of a kind of excitement Solidaire created. It posed in many of our family photos. Despite our names people used to address or tag us as “TV amma veedu”.
Those days were good. Really, really good. It was fun when the whole family sat together to watch interesting serials or shows by Pranob Roy/Siddhartha Basu. We had very less options either to watch our favorite show one in a day or to switch it off. On Saturdays it will be on outage mode so Sunday it could run for hours. Even my most favorite day was Sunday.
The memories are still fresh where we would be eagerly expecting our neighbor’s (a group of 5 families) marching to our home on Sunday evenings to watch movies. Actually it was much more than watching movies. Our kitchenette would be busy in preparation of snacks and tea. The aunties would bring on their own share of refreshments. After a mini getgo, the ladies would assemble in front of TV to watch movies plus their own world of gossips. The gents occupy the verandah discussing politics and nation current affairs. We children would play variety of games for a non- stop 3 hours.
It was fun. It was good. It was cherishing. I feel there was a true bonding; sharing; togetherness among us. The taste of delicacies prepared with their essence of love could never match to these days INOX popcorns. People now are insulated in their own undefined individual happiness. Even now I long for those Sundays which was a real entertainment and am sad that my fidget spinner generation will never experience such bonding.