Royal People

A dedication to those wonderful people who served Royal Primary School & Royal College, in Sri Lanka, since 1835, and, who will be remembered for their committment, sincerety and unselfishness.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The Soda's of Royal

Emma Fernando's Class

Sometimes when masters-in-charge were absent, one of the boys was asked to "look after the class".

Once it so happend,1/4 Soda volunteered. (Who listens to 1/4 Soda, anyways?). We were having a merry time, playing football, some shouting, some chatting.

Art Master, Mr. Emma Fernando (who died in Canada), walked in, "Who is in charge?" 1/4 Soda put his hand up. "Get up on the form" was the order. This happend in the West Wing 3rd. floor 2B Ruperty's class.

Next small class was 1/2 Soda's. By some misfortune, 1/2S had gone to the WW lobby canteen under the stair-well, to get his cuppa. He was walking very carefully not to spill any tea. Telepathy must have awakened his alfa rays, he glanced sideways to the left and carried on deftly.

I can still picture how 1/4 S shivered like a chic that was to be slaughtered. Back came 1/2 S., Upturned left palm and crooked index finger was giving the order. One good ‘Kaney’ on the cheek, one good kick on the running offspring. 10:30 interval. 15 mts. rest.

Hapu - Apr 5 2006

RSR & 1/4 Soda

There are so many stories on the exploits of 1/4 Soda. I remember RSR telling me one day that he was on duty at Katunayaka Airport when SL refugees who went to Germany were deported back to Sri Lanka.

Apparently R S R was the senior officer there with instructions to bring everyone back and remand them. When the refugees came in escorted by German police officers he heard someone shout "Hullo R S R", yeah you are right it was 1/4 Soda who was one of the refugees.

Needless to say RSR, in his own peerless style saw to it that all, except for one refugee who somehow was smuggled out of another doorway, were remanded. And 1/4 Soda escaped to perhaps even have another attempt at crashing into the 3rd Reich all over again.

That was the way the '59 groupers helped each other. Great days, huh?

Half Soda Kick

I remember hearing the story about 1/4 S getting a kick from the father, I was in 2C, Soda's class and I remember how scared he was of the father. One thing is that 1/2 S was very consistent . . . every one got the same kick irrespective of whether they were offspring or otherwise.

Wasn't Emma Fernando, the Vespa scooter master, WW Art Room, who had a rather unusual Musto, the one who was rather cuddly with Malani Saranapala from the Canteen?

Wonderful days Hapu, our children do not have time for fun, its very sad.

Nihal - Apr 5 2006

Rasavath Mems: From Prasanna in OZ:

Machang oo quarter soda neda? Ugey pappa the master ne half?

Also still mystery who changed Bella's clock. Niki Cum thama suspect...

Jayasinghe was the older of the two peons. The younger, darker chap?

Then the ground boys: David & Noor no? During a speech, I mistakenly ref'd to Deen here.

Your rasavath memories can go on. I enjoy them as they are short & sweet - and you write like a short story writer rather than Martin Wicks or WA Silva ! Very funny spirit - glad to see the boy has kept up his school spirit. Most people don't respond to any email, so just ignre their silence and keep until your mind's empty. Upto them to tell you. Your em's are not a nuisance ....... donta wurry U.

Prasanna Mendis
Apr 5 2006


In those days of glass bottles for areted water, soda came in two sizes, full and half.Considering the similarity in hight and shape, some far thinking Royalist named Mr.Sabaratnam - HALF SODA. Nihal, you are right. If father was half, son has to be quarter, that is simple logic. Thank you once again. If I remember right there was a third Sabaratnam, younger brother of our mad bugger. Wonder if he was known as 1/8 Soda?

According to what I heard, about changing Bella's clock, many of people suspect Niki Kum. Opinion is divided whether Niki did the job solo. In my view, Niki must have had a team of dare devil 59ers such as UCJ, NC, MHS Anil K, together with some seniors. But Niki must have gone in to bell the cat. Lets give full credit to Niki.

Jayasinghe was the old cad. Dovan Singho was the squint eyed darkie. Curly haired peon without a portfolio was Piyadasa.

Principal's peon was Kulatunga. Lab boys were Dabare and a darkie clad in National suit. I forget the lab asst. name. I owe a beaker.

RCH had head boy (50 or older) William, Piyasena, Sugathadasa.etc.etc. Matron, Ms Ratnayaka, ayahs - Podinona, Roslind, Kamalawathie (dark beauty) etc.etc.(lots of stories)

Ground Boys- David and Noor (both bastads) story later.

Hapu - Apr 4 2006

Comments from Nihal

I can fully understand your remembering ayah Kamalawathie . . . . but to remember all the others so lucidly is truly great. Can I ask you what your diet is?? A lot of us can do with a few more memory cells.

Half Soda sure had a lot of oomph resulting in "the urge to merge", often. If I remember right there were a lot more bottles in the family, and I think someone did mention that either 1/8th or 1/16th died tragically after being run over by a car. In fairness to the car driver it may not have been his fault as all Soda's were prone to bouts of absolute madness!!

I fully endorse Prasanna's line about most people not responding to mail, normally I would not have either. I responded so fast because I enjoyed it thoroughly and did not want it to stop.

Great stuff machan, keep the press rolling. I am sure we are in for some good episodes in the future. Hope Faz can cope with all this . . websites, writings on Kollupitiya, Bamba, keeping his full complement of 4 wives content . . grandchildren etc. etc.

Nihal - Apr 5 2006


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