I am sending with this letter a CD of the digitals of some photographs of Sherwood that I had promised that I would be sending you.
I think it was in early 1967 that I was presented with a small Kodak camera by my father. On Sundays we used to go on walks and that’s when I used to have willing models like John Frey, Girish Sharma and others to pose for me to click photographs. I did have many photographs of the days I spent in Sherwood, but have been able locate only a few of them. The cd contains the digitals of the ones which I feel could be of interest to other Old Sherwoodians.
While in Sherwood I had developed a very keen interest in photography and had even joined the Photographic Club run by Mr. Theophilus. It used to be fun learning to develop and print our photographs with Theo’s help in his small darkroom. It was located in the back quad I think. I still remember myself vigorously shaking the specialized container in which we developed the film rolls, while Theo was taking out prints from negatives.
I have named the jpg files in a manner that they are a bit self-explanatory. I, however, give you a list of the files below with names of people in them and the memories associated with them that I could remember. Some of the memories are so vivid that it is as if I am seeing in my mind a movie of the old days and reliving them, some are as if I am leafing through an album of old photographs that revive old memories and others very faint, sketchy and misted by time. I hope you could upload this letter with the photos so that we could have people reading my recollections and reminding me of other things that I may have forgotten of those days. It was 36 years ago and I was very young then. Time and the incessant struggle to keep the home-fires burning have both dimmed from my memory, many names and faces that I cannot now recall. But when somebody now reminds me of a name and when I’m able to place a face to that name, it’s pure ecstasy.
I write these memories of Sherwood as a tribute to a wonderful father, who despite his modest pay as a banker, thought it right to spend a fortune and send his son to this wonderful school in an effort to give him the upbringing that few could then think of. I thank you Dad for sending me to Sherwood and for all that you had done for me, and most of all for the faith that you had in me. It was the sense of not betraying your faith in me that probably made me try even harder. You are no more with me, today, to see what little I have achieved, but I know you will be happy up there in the heavens knowing that your son may not have been one of the great achievers, but at least he tried, because he did not want to fail you.
My father got to know that there was a good boarding school in Nainital. He wrote to Mr. Llewelyn, the Principal of Sherwood then, probably in late February 1965. And out of the blue there came a telegram from the school, accepting me as a student and asking my father to send me to join the school even though I would be late for the session.
We had just about a week to prepare the whole kit. There were different sets of shorts and trousers and shirts and vests and an endless list of other things such as the pullovers, the different pairs of socks, the PT shoes - I was bought a different looking rather feminine pair of PT shoes from Bata (GC still remembers them), the beautiful radiant red coloured woolen bath gown, the only piece of garment that I wore for the hot water baths that we were allowed twice a week. A torch, which I used when we went down during the nights for an emergency drill during the blackouts in 1965 when India was at war with Pakistan. I bought a small umbrella that I have and have been using till just a few months back. I only bought myself a new one just a few days before leaving for the GR2005 - the reunion that was not to be for me - although I would have liked to take along the old umbrella for old times sake had it not been for the numerous holes in it. Then there was an oversized Duck-Back raincoat that flowed down to my ankles. I can still remember myself walking up from town in a heavy downpour and finding it difficult to walk as the raincoat caught in my rather smart gumboots on the slippery road to Sherwood, the cold rain dripping down inside the collar. I used this raincoat till probably 1990 because I didn’t grow very tall and it did fit me well for long. A very good but rather heavy hockey stick was bought (I proved out to be a lousy hockey player – I was proud of the looks of the hockey stick but credited my bad play to the weight of the stick). The football shoes I bought on reaching Sherwood were black and served me well in many a rain soaked game.
Then there was a small black tin trunk that was dear to many like me - The Tuck Box - that had my name and roll no. 161 painted in white and that was lovingly filled by my mother with packets of biscuits - cream and jam biscuits and Cheeselings that came in a tin were my favorites. There were tins of Milkmaid condensed milk, bottles of jam and marmalade that I used to share with friends at the breakfast table and best of all with Cadbury’s chocolates for which I still have a weakness. We set store to these goodies because the food we were served at Sherwood then was not much to talk of, especially during the Pakistan War in ’65 when we were served brown bread that most of us didn’t like and tea with jaggery instead of sugar in it. The biscuits, probably baked in the school bakery, which we were served at tea, were thin, hard and insipid. But some of the dishes like stuffed potatoes in gravy with parathas and the fish curry were delicious.
And I reached Sherwood around the 12th of March ’65 about a week late for my classes to be befriended by some wonderful people. For the first three or four days I was hopelessly homesick and cried at night. But after that I was so engrossed with the friends I made in Sherwood that I remembered about my family only when we were given the inland letter forms to write home.
1. anil bhardwaj in 67.jpg -- That’s a studio shot of me taken in the winter holidays in Feb ‘67 by a photographer friend of my mamaji. People back home those days were very impressed that I studied in Sherwood and so was this photographer who had been taking snaps of me since I was born. He suggested that I pose in the Sherwood blazer for this photograph. I find guys are still sentimental about the blazer. Even I was, as it was the symbol of being a representative of a different elite class and breed of people called Sherwoodians.
2. GROUP OF 66.jpg -- This was a group photo taken when I was is Horsi. I am standing second from right in the front row. To the left to me is R. S. Chauhan. The tall guy at the back with Tibetan features is Dorgi, who had migrated to India from Tibet. He told us how his family walked over the mountains in the snow while fleeing Tibet. He had to be carried by his brave father in the snow on the way. Dorgi was a tall boy, overage for his class. His punch and kick was something that you stayed away from, but he was a person with a very soft heart. He was never a bully even though he was one of the stoutest in our class. I still remember how once while playing football I kicked at a high ball just as Dorgi too was having a go at it and his foot landed under my calf. So strong was his kick that I being short, thin and small was lifted of my feet in the air by the impact and when I fell I literally saw stars in the day. And the guy was so apologetic and sorry, as if he was to blame for it, that it warmed the cockles of my heart. Another face that I can put name to is that of P. K. Gupta from Hoshiarpur who is standing at the back. I remember him as a roly-poly fellow who really made his presence felt on the playing field more with his weight and build and the way he ran or rather rolled as a road roller out of control. I think the surd on the extreme left is Sidhu.
3. summer66.jpg -- Every founder’s while I did PT on the playing field, I would look longingly at the parents hoping to find someone who had come to take me to town for the holidays. But invariably I had to stay back in school with a few unfortunate others. But that, too, had an advantage. The staff pampered us. We had late nights parties when our thundering about the dorms was overlooked. And we were also taken very often to the town and you could ask for extra pocket money from Mr. Beaman ostensibly to buy a book from Modern Book Depot but which we used to see movies in town. We would be taken for walks and picnics. This picture is of one of those picnics to a small glade nearby.
4. prize distribute67.jpg -- I never gave anybody much reason to be called up to be presented any award or prize except perhaps twice. One of the exceptions was the result of not my skills, but the get-up of the character I portrayed in a fancy dress competition on skates.
The multi-faceted Mr. J. B. Singh introduced me to roller-skating. He is one of the greats of Sherwood who is idolized and worshiped by many Old Sherwoodians. I was one of his students and fans. I learnt to skate in the gym from him. Rolling forward was fine but when it came to skating backward, I never could get the proper rhythm. Mr. Singh would hold my hands and guide or rather push me backward. It was fine as long as he held me, but when left to myself my legs would get entangled and I would often be sitting on my aching bum with my legs spread-eagled, sheepishly hiding my embarrassment.
I portrayed a Panditji in the fancy dress. I dressed up in a white shirt and a white bed sheet that severed as a ‘dhoti’. Girish helped me tie the heavy bed sheet around my small waist and I borrowed a brass ‘lota’ from one of the bearers. I tried my best to skate around the gym mumbling some mantras and sprinkling water from the ‘lota’ onto the surprised judges and audience, while the damn dhoti tended to come undone. It was probably the ability to hold on to the dhoti and stay upright or perhaps the prayers of a small underachiever that got me that small cup for the prize. Girish phoned me that he spoke of me with Mr. J. B. Singh when he met him at the GR2005 and that Mr. Singh remembered me as the one who took part as a ‘jogi’.
The modest skating skills that I could garner under Mr. Singh did help me years later in college because I had an excuse to go roller-skating with and try to impress a girl at Shimla. That she was a much better skater did not do wonders for my ego and I doubt that she ever found my skating graceful. And I could never learn for sure that the interest she had in me was, what then I would have liked to believe was love or that she just withstood my company because she did not want to break my heart.
The other award that I received (and the only one ever for academics, perhaps) was a book; that I received for the overall improvement I displayed in my studies in my first year in Sherwood that I joined in the 4th standard. Miss Dyson really must have been impressed by my progress at the end of the year, because I was woefully far behind the class in the beginning. After that I did nothing much to make any of my teachers proud of me.
My other opportunity to get a prize was my being selected to play the part of a fairy in the Nativity Play in Horsi. I was not given any dialogues and alas could not display my dramatic skills. But I had a very fair skin and chubby rosy cheeks (probably from the cold of weather of Nainital in November) and the teacher, Miss Downs (the one who married Mr. Gardner) it was I think, had done such a good job with her make up kit, that I looked pretty in a white dress with wings. The cheeks grew even redder when the All C seniors lovingly tweaked my cheeks after the play.
The stage was not made for me or rather I was not made for the stage. I had an awe full stage fright then, and I am still horrified if asked to speak in public now. One of the rare occasions that I could gather courage to go up on stage was when I took part in a poetry recitation contest. I can’t remember clearly now, but I think it was Mrs. Blake who tried to teach me the nuances of recitation and made me mug up William Wordsworth’s ‘The Daffodils’. When my name was called and I went on stage fear gripped me and I forgot the lines. The whole of Millman was looking at me. My knees knocked and the whole of me trembled. But just as I was about to be called back, I thankfully started to recite. And what a recitation it was. Instead of reciting the poem I just nervously sang through it. Nobody could have called the applause deafening and it dawned on me that I was better off watching others perform and that elocutions, debates, recitals and dramatics were not meant for an ordinary person like me. But I opine that we do make a wonderful audience and wonderful fans.
5. john frey BDattaray vkuriyan in 68.jpg -- Shot on one of those Sunday excursions that B Dattaray , John Frey, I and Vinod Kuryian took. I haven’t heard about Dattaray since I left Sherwood.
Since I stayed at Dwarkridge for one year, I was among the privileged few who used to go on long walks with Mr. Chelvam on Sundays and holidays. He used to take us to Lands End, to the grave-yards near by where we would read the names of those buried and the epitaphs got written on the tomb-stones by their loved ones, to Tiffin Top, past Jim Corbett’s house and to the golf course. Mr. Chelvam taught us how to take fast short-cuts down the hillside sliding down while holding one clump of bamboo shoots and letting it go in time to catch another clump still sliding down and to climb up the stone lined rain water channels using them as steps. This, he said he knew was the route taken by the guys who bunked school, to evade detection. He always carried a small bottle of salt during the rains to be put on the leeches that stuck to our legs (there was no other faster and less painful way of having them off your body).
People have written reams about Mr. Chelvam on the OSS site. He is one such person, who has I think, influenced and inspired a lot of young minds. Those who had the opportunity to live in Dwarki were probably the lucky ones, and I was one of the more lucky ones for I was one of his favorites and learnt a lot from him. He made boomerangs and I too got the opportunity to try to learn from him to throw them from the lawn in front of Dwarki and at the golf course. He took our Carpentry Club classes where he worked wonders with the fret saw and chisel. I still have a table lamp that I made there and on which he carved designs with a chisel. I have a small boat that he dug out of a piece of wood for me. Many younger cousins, nephews, nieces and even my two daughters have sailed this small simple boat in the bathtub. He had a black India rubber ball that did a lot of tricks in his hands. He threw it such a way that it would always come back to him. In the nights we caught glow-worms, which were in abundance at Dwarki, to put into empty jam bottles and learnt about the stars in the sky from him. He taught us of the different species of beetles found in the lawns, which we used to keep in cardboard boxes in which we placed leaves. And the best part was being able to learn English pronunciation and grammar, even when on walks with him.
I had never been a very bright student and usually just averaged in all subjects. But Mr. Chelvam encouraged me into light reading and to brush up my vocabulary - he had an astounding vocabulary and a list of his own words and phrases, which I would call ‘Chilli-isms’. I started off with Enid Blyton, graduating to Earl Stanley Gardner, then to Harold Robbins and Alistair MacLean and later to Charles Dickens and Shakespeare.
When I returned from Sherwood to study in schools, the other students there lacked in their command over English diction and composition. My grammar, and my accent in particular, left many (even the teachers) dumb folded. I thus was transformed from somebody just average to the brightest amongst the lot. There’s a saying in Hindi ‘Andho mein kaana raja’ that roughly translates to - the one-eyed king of the kingdom of the blind. I relished my position of the one-eyed king. The adulation and importance that I got made me want to really excel in English and I became interested enough do some serious reading. And in this way, came into my life books like War and Peace, Hamlet, The Tempest, Pride and Prejudice, Gone With the Wind, Scarlet and poets like Milton, Keats, Byron and Robert Frost. So deeply involved was I that I developed the false notion that I could dabble with literature and poetry. I never was able to gather the courage to offer the poems and other stuff that I wrote to a publisher. I thus probably saved the lucky publishers a lot of money, but deprived the critics the pleasure of another author bashing.
But thanks to Mr. Chelvam, I do have one fan - my wife - who still treasures the long letters (some even 21 pages long) that I could write to her because of the fairly adequate knowledge of English that I could acquire because of the encouragement of a wonderful teacher. My wife still believes that the poems I wrote were wonderful. I am sure everybody else who read these thought otherwise.
6. anil bhardwaj in dev anand style pants 69.jpg One of me shot wearing my favorite hand knit pullover (my mum used to knit amazing designs into woolens) and a pair of trousers that had grown short and yet I still liked wearing.
My stay at Dwarkridge was one of the best periods I spent at Sherwood because we had more liberty here than what the prefects and matrons in the dorms allowed us. Other than the wonderful Mr. Chelvam another teacher who lived there was Mr. Smith (I think I got the name right). Mr. Smith was a flamboyant, though moody young bachelor whose collection of LP records and the way he dressed was a fascination for us young Sherwoodians. We learnt to dance to the beats of the Beatles on some evenings and Sunday afternoons from him. I can still picture him in his front room on an afternoon with the sun streaming in through the window, lean and sharp-featured and dancing with us in his tight fitting checked trousers and pointed toed shoes. For some he certainly must have been an Adonis personified. It’s that what inspired me (and many others) to buy a pair of those pointed toed shoes and get a tight fitting pair of trousers. I kept wearing the shoes even when they hurt my feet and the trousers, I had at times, found it difficult pulling them on as they had grown too tight and short and the narrow bottom made it difficult for the feet to go through.
7. gcsharma2.jpg -- This I think is of Girish Sharma 72 AD. I mailed him this photo but he was not sure at first that this was of him. Girish and I used to be very pally. We stayed together in a dorm whose windows opened in the front quad. Dorm 3 or 4 it was I think. His bed was in the far corner near the window and mine next to him. It was from that end that we usually were made to run the gantlet. Both of us were very short, probably the shortest in Dixion Wing. That was one reason that probably made us stick together.
Girish is one of those guys who are very, very emotional about Sherwood. He phoned me up from the States before the GR telling me that he was to attend the GR, and then after returning to the US he phoned me up to let me know of the wonderful time he had there. Alas, I missed something really great. It would have been wonderful to see after so many years. He has a wonderful memory and when he phones I can feel his enthusiasm and I am once again transported back in time to the days we spent together in Sherwood.
8. Anil the rock climber in 68.jpg -- Inspired by the exploits of our climbers to Pindari and seeing Mr. Johnson teach rock-climbing to the seniors, I too fancied that I could one day become a rock climber and used to try my hand at it. Girish Sharmas’s father was at the Institute of Mountaineering at Uttarkashi and we both used to talk of going on an expedition one day.
There was a wall near the base of the steps that came down from Horsi to the playing field where the seniors would practice rock climbing. I, one day, tried scaling up this wall trying to emulate Mr. Johnson and our seniors. Going up was fine, but then there was a portion near the top that had very little crevices for one to hold onto and one had to negotiate the corner to the left and then go up to the steps that came down from Dixi to Horsi. Moving left was proving too much an effort for my frail and short arms and legs. I was stuck not knowing how to go left and reach for the toeholds and crevices that were a bit far off. That is when I chickened out and did not know what to do. My legs trembled and I did not know how to go up and felt frightened to come down. That’s when Mr. Johnson who observed my predicament guided me back down from the wall. Though I was doing what I was not supposed to be doing and what only a senior should have been doing; but probably since Mr. Johnson must have earlier noticed my enthusiasm about rock-climbing (for I used to hang around when he taught the seniors) he left me off lightly with an advise to wait till my time came, where as I was fearing that I would get a proper scolding. The way he lovingly told me to bid my time really enamored me to him after that, because before this I used to be in awe of Mr. Johnson for try as he might he could not teach me how to swim. I used to hate the cold water specially when it rained and would seek excuses not to be in the pool, and whenever he found me out of the pool he’d give me a whack on the behind and throw me in lifting me by one arm and one leg. Mr. Thappa was a different person. Always firm but warm and encouraging and goading you to try. He, too, tried to teach me to swim by holding me up by my waist in the pool. Unfortunately for him I was a very poor learner. I never learnt to swim. It’s always the same with all the mediocre people like me; we always will be bad learners.
9. anil bhardwaj the footballer.jpg – I was short, weak and very un-athletic and could never excel in any game no matter how hard I tried. But I grew fond of football and tried my best to impress Mr. Thappa as a gutsy halfback. It was usually everybody else on the field but me who had possession of the ball but whenever I could get hold of the ball, the on rushing opponent just swept aside my small frame; and the ensuing bruises were more on the body than on the spirit. Even a weak right knee, for which I had to use a kneecap, did not deter me from running with the ball on the rare occasions that I could get the possession of it.
10. akjaggi.jpg -- A. K. Jaggi was senior to me and very enthusiastic about football. I remember that he had fractured his arm and could not be included in the house football team, which he really wanted to. There was another guy called Bhist, a senior, who played very good football. He always had a running nose and would constantly wriggle it like Krishnamchari Srikanth, the cricketer. He was my hero, because others like Macfarlane were too senior to bother about a little nobody like me.
11. John Frey1.jpg -- I got to know from the OSS website that he was in Lucknow, located his email id wrote to him and got a reply and a phone call. He was one of the guys I was very close to. John and I were never the very athletic types and we stuck together a lot. He was one of those gems of friends who believed in what you said. He believed in my tall stories of my exploits to the jungles of Africa and my meeting the comic strip character Phantom, which I had him believe was a real person. He wore braces then and had a wonderful toothy smile that ran on his face ear to ear.
12. John Frey2.jpg -- John was always willing to model for my photo sessions. I used to try to take trick shots from odd angles and positions in the hope of coming up with outstanding photographs. I was trying to show someone standing on John’s hand in this photo.
13. John Anil Sanjeev mahajan_in 69.jpg -- That’s one of John Frey, Sanjeev Mahajan and me taken a few days before I left Sherwood for home. I received a mail from Sanjeev. He’s in the US and a member of the OSS. Sanjeev was more of the dandy type of guys, very prim and proper in his dress; probably the best dressed amongst us. While John had long legs and a sort of a loose fidgetiness in his walk, Sanjeev walked with a bit of a twirl of the hips and stood usually askance.
14. john vinod kuriyan sanjeev mahajan_in 69.jpg -- Of Vinod Kuriyan, I’ve heard from Ranjit Ralliaram and John Frey that he lives in Mumbai. I remember Kuriyan to be a very energetic and naughty elfish guy. He was the sort who would play small pranks on you and yet make you laugh.
15. sbhargava john frey rschauhan.jpg -- Does any body remember where Bhargava (I’ve forgotten his first name)is now? We used to play a lot of leapfrog together. I was short and had to make an effort to leap over him. He would naughtily stand up midway when my turn came to leap over him and I would end up head over heels on the bajri
16. anil bhardwaj in 68.jpg -- Taken on a Sunday in ‘68. Girish Sharma, as far as I can remember, shot this picture.
17. anil bhardwaj with raman mishra in 68.jpg – Raman Mishra was probably two years senior to me. He was a distant relative from Mukerian- Punjab. My father and mother once visited me in Sherwood in October and took both us out for two days. We stayed at the Elphinston Hotel.
18. anil bhardwaj Bhisti69.jpg -- It was shot probably outside Bhisti’s? May be somebody could recognize the place and let me know for sure. Bhisti’s is one place with which many would associate memories of omelets and buns eaten sitting on the rickety benches and the wonderful scent of the omelets being cooked as one waited for ones turn.
Sherwoodl had it’s own distinct scents, especially in the rains. The fresh air outside, the musty smell of the corridors of Dwarki and the foul smell of the bonfs (which reminds me of the shortage of toilet paper and the pages of note books used instead), all have their own recollections. But no other hill station that I visited smelled as good as Naini. For years whenever I visited any other hill station I would be reminded of the pine scented air of Nainital and Sherwood and would always long to visit it again.
19. Naini Lake in 69.jpg – Taken on one of the visits to town from the flats of Mallital. Often on the 15th of August we were taken to watch our swimmers swim the length of the lake. Courageous guys, for they ventured into waters that I feared going in a boat. They practiced for weeks under Johnny in the swimming pool. One of my classmates from Bombay – I can’t recollect his name exactly - and his elder brother were both very good long distance swimmers. They started the swim from Tallital. While they swam towards the other end we walked along the Mall cheering them up. They braved the chilling waters of the lake and the cramps while we braved the rain that came down as we waited to receive them at the Mallital end.
I never got the opportunity to ride in a yacht, but they looked very pretty moored in the lake and so I shot this photo.
20. rschauhan.jpg – This is a shot of R. S. Chauhan. He was from my batch. I remember that he once went home during the holidays and burnt his right thigh. He had put some crackers in his pocket. And while he was bursting crackers the ones in his pocket caught fire pocket and he suffered severe burns. And once in the holidays, he fractured his arm riding a bike down a slope. I’ve heard that he is no more. May his soul rest in peace.
21. vpchoudhary.jpg – I don’t remember much about Choudhary except that he was short like me and that we gelled well. I was fond of shooting pictures from odd angles. This is one of those shots.
22. sherwood from above68.jpg – One of the better landscapes that I shot probably in 1968 of the school from the cliffs near Tiffni.
23. Untitled3.jpg – Another face that I could not place a name to. Could somebody enlighten me?
24. etaylor and anil bhardwajs dad.jpg -- Mr. Taylor was the bursar. This shot was taken on the day my father came to take me back mid-session from school in 1969, as I had not been keeping well. I had some problem with my knee and felt some pain and I wrote home and asked to be called back. The problem could not be diagnosed and as the pain subsided after a few days, everyone back home then believed that I had been shamming out of homesickness and that I had wanted just a reason to be home. It was more because of the insistence of my doting grandma that my I stayed back and did not return to school. I too doubted myself, at times with guilt, that perhaps I really had made up the whole story to return home to a grandma who spoiled me with her love.
The knee still hurts now, at times a lot more, as it did 36 years ago and has been diagnosed now to be problem that needs regular exercise and physiotherapy. The pain proves that I did not sham then, and that I was not a liar. But the pain in the knee had a positive story to it. Since I had complained of the pain in the knee I was stopped from playing games. I had been a treble in the choir (I had a very shrill voice that sometimes stood out from the rest and Mr. Thompson would look sternly at me when I, in my exuberance, went a bit too out of tune). So I started to learn to play the piano from Mr. Thompson. I looked forward to the evenings when I would go to play the piano in the music hut. There was a senior, his name was Chopra I think, who played the piano very well and would come to practice there. Mr. Thompson would sit beside me on a stool and try to teach my stiff fingers to move on the piano keys. And just when I was getting the hang of it and had just started to comprehend the way the different notes were written in the music scores, my father came to take me home. That was the end of my brief brush with music.
25. anil bhardwaj leaving sherwood in69.jpg -- This was taken by my father on the fateful day when I was leaving Sherwood never to return till today. I have always regretted that I left Sherwood mid-way when I was in the 8th standard. I missed out on a lot of things by not completing my schooling there, because that was the period of the formative years of my life that could have made a better person out of me than I am today. I seem to be uncomfortable in this photo and I still am uncomfortable when I look at it. I have always longed visit to Sherwood again. It is perhaps because of the wonderful time I spent in Sherwood, that the hills still attract me. Years ago, when I was bitten by a literary bug I had hoped to, one day, make a small house in the hills where I could sit down to reflect upon what life has given me and write my memoirs. And the title that I had then thought out for my memoirs was ‘A House in the Hills’.
Writing about these photographs, my memories, my heroes and my idols has given me immense pleasure. I hope that some of those I idolized remember me too. And it would give me greater pleasure to know that I am, because the fan just keeps waving for but one reward, the acknowledgement from his hero. I’m sorry this letter has turned out to be rather long, but brevity has never been my forte. I may have been boring at times, but I have written as the recollections came. I do have a few more photographs of me but I left them out as it would have meant too much of me. And as and when I am able to find more interesting pictures from my days at Sherwood, I’ll be sending them to you with the more memories that they are sure to revive.