Friday, August 11, 2006

The Vancouver Diaries – XI

Last few months!

I relegated the SFU fiasco to the back of my mind. There were other important things going on. I got an admit at University of BC with scholarship. I had my final Provincial Exams coming up. And above all, I had prom peeking around the corner!

MJ and I hadn’t planned on going. When I saw some pictures of prom costumes, I was sure I’d not have the courage to wear such ball gowns nor would my father permit it! Besides, everyone was going with a date and I didn’t really want to have a "date" date. So I didn’t sign up for it.

One day, Mr. W, who was my homeroom teacher, called me into his office. He was also my Physics 12 and Calculus 12 teacher. I liked the genial, smiling guy and he had a soft corner for me always.

“Subha, why haven’t you signed up for prom?”

“I don’t know, Mr. W. I don’t feel like it, I guess.”

“May I ask why?”

“Errr…because I don’t want to have a date.”

“Oh. I see. You don’t necessarily have to ask a guy. You can go with your other girl friends.”


“So? Can I put your name down?”

“Errm…I don’t think I can wear those ball gowns. I am not used to them.”

I blabbered in a burst of confidence. I really have no idea what made me confide to him!

He laughed.

“Oh. I see the trouble. Well, I know a place where my sister used to go to get clothes. It has some pretty conservative dresses. Here’s the name of the place in the mall. Try it.”


“Subha, these things happen just once in life. You may go back to your country but you will have some remembrance of us if you attend this. You will carry it with you for life. Ok? Promise you’ll try? I will put your name down for now and also MJ’s.”

I think I am indebted to that kind soul who coaxed me into an experience of a life time!


Dress hunting!

MJ and I went dress hunting to the mall. We browsed through a hundred shops and we didn’t like any. GK was making her own dress. So she didn’t have this problem.

“MJ, you think we should make own clothes?”

“You know sewing?”


“You know to use a machine?”


“So you mean to say that in one month you are going to learn sewing, get a machine and actually make your dress??”

“Hmm..when you put it that way, it does seem difficult.”

She rolled her eyes. And we continued dress hunting.

Too low necked.

Too high.

Too low backed.

Don’t like zippers.

Don’t like halters.

Too expensive.

Ewww…what a color!

Amazing but then it’d stink on me.

I look fat in this.

It was two weeks before prom night and we still didn’t have dresses. So finally, tired of shopping, we settled into Rainforest Café in Metrotown Mall.


The Dress That Found Me

I read Shopaholic Ties the Knot by Sophie Kinsella sometime back. In that, the wedding planner says,

“You don’t find the dress. The dress finds you.”

I think that might be true. The funny thing is MJ and I found our dresses at the same time.

Mine was a dark blue, satin gown with sequins sewn near the top. Hers was a royal blue, plain gown that suited her creamy complexion perfectly! We both liked it instantly and it was reasonably priced.

Finally, my dress had found me!


Prom Night, Graduation Ceremony etc…

Prom night is a huge cultural statement. Girls spent so many weeks planning what they were going to wear, how they’re going to style their hair, whom they’re going out with etc…It was girlie fun! J We spent endless hours giggling and conspiring.

As for me, I wasn’t going to do my hair or makeup or anything. I’d just wear my gown, add a light choker and I was done. I left my hair loose. 6 of us had rented a limousine together. So we went away in all glory to the Hyatt Regency at the waterfront. There was dinner and dancing. After that, we had a boat ride on the Pacific in the night! It was a magical night!

Graduation ceremony was at the Orpheum Theatre. I wore a red cap and gown and walked across the podium feeling proud and happy!


Goodbye to BNSS!

Thus ended two memorable years. We said our goodbyes to each other, hugged, cried a bit. We signed each others’ yearbooks and hoped we’d see each other somewhere in the future. I took one last look at the Viking mascot in front of our school and walked home in the sunset.


Just one more page and the Diary will end...


Prabhu said...

VD mudiya porathu nu ninachaa me also feel like crying :(

dinesh said...

"everyone was going with a date and I didn’t really want to have a "date" date"

Yaarukkaaga indha vesham ? Onna paarthaa avlo periya "uththami" nu thonalayee..:)

"“Oh. I see. You don’t necessarily have to ask a guy. You can go with your other girl friends.” “Hmmm….errm…”"

Subhashini --- adhukku vera artham subhashini !! Adhu purinjukkaama, no problem, I'll come with my girl friend nu sollittaye subha :)

Anonymous said...

Blog supera poitu iruku ... kalaki podara.

Oru Commentla moonu Subhashiniya?
Vera yaar madhiriyo nee comment adikara madhiri iruku..



RS said...

subha - Liked your Vancouver Diaries, read like a story :)

Interesting to read how life would have been for a desi in US when you don't have other desis around you.

I guess we have it easy with grad life because we are surrounded by so many other Indian students but I have a feeling we end up learning your way...

RT said...

Subha - VD was interesting...
they say, when in rome, be a roman...but we are not able to do that always rite...we have our own tastes, beliefs and a comfortable zone within which we operate!

Subha said...


idhellam remba over! :))



thanks for vaarifying Dinesh for me!:)

Subha said...


Having soo many other desis around me helped during grad school days certainly! :)


Anonymous said...

Hi Subha,

Read your Vancouver Diaries...Interesting read indeed....hard to imagine how you managed under such circumstances...That should have been an experience of a lifetime