Tag Archives: Ronald Goss

Adam Drobot [BCS from 1956-1959]: Found!

Dear All,

I am not sure how many of you remember Adam Drobot. I have just located him on the net (30) Education | Adam Drobot | LinkedIn

I have downloaded a picture of him from the net. He is an accomplished techy !! His biodata mentions the years at BCS from 1956-1959

Dear Adam,

Yesterday, prior to my mails below, I had written to your corporate address which seemed to have a Adam Drobot as a their CEO on their website. It actually turned out, as I subsequently discovered, to be the you I was attempting to locate !

The correspondence, different colours for better readability, is appended further down in this note.

You, were one of the two Polish boys at BCS during our time, the other being W Kubaseweiz (Curzon, class of 1961), who was a strong swimmer and not the kind you tangled with !!

Accompanying this mail, as attachments, are photographs for Rivaz House for the years from 1956-59 and one for the staff members in 1959 which was the year of our Centenary. You may recognise more than a few of your teachers most of them now gone with the exception of Mr & Mrs Goss !!

I have been able to locate you in all the Rivaz house photographs, except for the house picture for 1959.

1956 –Second row from the top,  Seventh from the right,

1957 – Second row from the top,  Ninth from the left,

1958 – Second row, behind the seated, Fifth from the left

1959 – Unable to locate Adam

[click for larger view of each photo]

I recall you being initially shy and unsure but like other new boys you soon found your footing and were friendly, even easy going. The Adam, I recall was a good student, always in the top five, with a strong disposition to mathematics and chemistry. You loved painting.

The School Art Master, Mr Sasim DasGupta, once commented on your method of heavy and flat brush strokes being somewhat similar to the technique used by Van Gogh ! That year he sent one of your paintings to an institution in London along with those of other boys whose art he felt stood out. In return these boys received certificates of merit. I do not know the name of the institution but Mr DasGupta encouraged talent all the time.

Mr DasGupta was also the Warden of the Remove dormitory where you spent your initial years at BCS. Mr DasGupta, who moved to Toronto and passed away a few years ago, would ask you to spell “Polish” and mildly teased you that that was the spelling for the shoe “polish”. You would deliver a weak smile with a degree of obvious embarrassment.

A small idiosyncratic habit. You were not a sports person but had this habit of often chewing the collar of your Rivaz house jersey! You did not like the marathon and boxing was never your forte

I have never forgotten but you once mentioned that snails were a speciality and a great delicacy in Poland. I have never had the temerity to verify that assertion and hold that belief most firmly because Adam was always a credible source of information. I obviously  never felt desire nor the need to check any further.

The reason why I remember you so well has to do with a little incident and the ensuing moral dilemma

Most of  us were limited by the pocket money that we received at the end of the week from the Housemaster. It was 12 annas (75 paise) or Rs 1 & 4 annas (125 paise) depending on the dormitory you belonged to. When we went out of School on town leave, Rs 5 would get you a movie ticket, a plate of finger chips, an ice cream cone, a Coke and a comic or two! That was luxury.

In 1959 in III Form, you and I sat in the last row along the wall that faced the entrance to the class room from the corridor. You sat on the desk in front of me. These were wooden desks, if you recall, with a sloping lid, lifted at the hinge to offer a cavity space for the storage of books with the provision for a lock. The desk was fixed to the seat with a wooden bar at the bottom that connected the desk with the seat. Often the previous occupant had etched his name on the desk with the use of a compass. There was small space on the desk for an ink pot and we all used fountain pens, the ball point had yet to be invented

One day, I observed a piece of paper what seemed like a Rs 10 note, stained with ink, lodged between the wall and the desk. I dragged the paper using my foot ruler since it was  closer to your desk. Sure enough it was 10 bucks. You were rarely short of money and I felt it, perhaps, belonged to you. Relatively, you were at that time more cash rich and solvent than most of us. So I asked you if that note was yours. “No, it is not mine,” was the response  in your strong heavily accented tone, relieving me, temporarily, of any moral obligation. You are the only one I asked about the note because you were the only likely one who could be its owner in that class room.

I promptly went to the Tuck Shop and deposited that heavily ink stained note (no one else would have taken it!) with Chippu indicating that the credit to my account was now, well, brim-full. For the next few days I enjoyed the best the Tuck Shop had to offer from puris, samosas and chips, all that could satiate an always hungry boy. Days of rapture and contentedness.  A few days later, you came up to me and declared that that Rs 10 note did indeed belong to you. I was non plussed and taken aback. Disaster was about to strike. I froze for a few seconds and then sheepishly informed you that the funds stood extinguished. I had fed, pretty well, a soul in great need. To your credit, you said not a word in rebuke nor did you seek a return of the money. Any other twelve year old would have demanded even an ink stained note. I have always recalled your generosity and understanding.  I have not forgotten though, in my defence, that I had been honest in my declaration and the lack of knowledge was honest though I did speculate, maybe even knew, you were the original owner. No one else was that solvent those days !!

Apart from you, the only other Catholics at that time were Mr & Mrs Goss and a boy named Benjamin (Lefroy, he won the Junior Reading Prize that year! ) who would have finished with the Class of 1964. This group did, on occasion, attend the Catholic service in town with you always turned out in a light grey, well-tailored suit. You were always  well dressed on such occasions but otherwise presentation mattered little.

Adam, you may not remember too many boys from your class during those years at BCS but I reckon you may recall the names of Rishi Rana, the Joshi brothersManjit Sibia, all from Rivaz and in your class, and, possibly, Govinder Singh who lived in Delhi at Wellesley Road not far from the Drobot house in Sunder Nagar.

I faintly recall, that you had a sister and your parents on one occasion drove up all the way from Delhi to celebrate his birthday with a lovely cake. A few days prior to that event, the circle of your best friends had increased rather exponentially in anticipation of a party in the making. The School had arranged a special table outside the Dining Hall in the corridor leading up to the Staff Common Room for the occasion. We wished you wished you “Happy Birthday” with a delightful eye on the spread on that table! . We gorged !!

It has been  65 years in all since we last met. So many memories stand revived and I am sure there will be more inputs from those on this mailing list. Adam will have probably more to add !!

Warmly

Vijay

V K Khurana

Incidentally, the large number on this mailing list includes guys from the classes of 1961-63, some from 1964, Mr Goss, a few others who have shown an interest in all things BCS and the Old Cottonian

Adam replied:


VK,

This is a very pleasant surprise. Thank you for reaching out. A lot of the names on the email list and a lot of the faces in the class and staff pictures still look familiar. Your writeup brings back a lot of memories. Life at BCS had its paces and I appreciate your recounting some of the events even though my recollection might be a bit different. If I look at 1956 I find myself in the first row as fifth from left – and definitely not seventh from right in the second row from the back!

When your email reached me, I was frantically preparing talks for a couple of events this coming week. Once I am back from these you should get a much longer reply. Over the years I have managed to visit India on multiple occasions, including a trip to Shimla. On one of the trips I followed Manmohan Singh as a speaker – that was for Telecom India 2009, in New Delhi.

I currently live in Wayne, Pennsylvania, just outside Philadelphia.  The best email address to reach me is: adam.drobot@gmail.com.

With best regards,

Adam Drobot


Hi Adam,

Truly lovely to hear from you. My thanks.

 While, I will check again, the image you sent is certainly not of you. It is one of the Stokes boys. Most of them migrated to the US. Brilliance was in their genes and they went on to do well in different fields including IT, medicine and laser technology!

 Will wait to hear from you and, yes, different interpretations may occur of incidents in each one’s mind. After 65 years, brain cell degradation at different levels and such other aspect change the perception or imagination of events completely !

 Warmly,

 Vijay

Happy birthday, Mr Goss – 94th 

May 3rd 2023

My dear Mr Goss,

Warm and sincere wishes on this your 94th (Ninety Fourth) birthday. My friends, I and our respective families wish you a wonderful day. May the years ahead, and may there be many, many more, continue to bring you good health, great happiness and tons of laughter.

Looking back and from my collection, I am sending as attachments to this mail a few photographs of the way we still remember you. The change, which has surely occurred over these long years, does not register in our mind’s eye. You are still the spritely young man we knew who walked in briskly into the class and went about the assignment without much ado. What was enormously enjoyable was your introducing us to Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes. Those class sessions were inevitably the most enjoyable and certainly the most remembered. It certainly did inculcate the reading habit in so many of us. Sometimes I wish we had started with P G Wodehouse though Conan Doyle is a class apart in an entirely different genre. In those mostly quiet corridors, peals of laughter generated by a Jeeves incident may have had other consequences, I suspect !!

I will not recount your fearful and stern marking record but I think it was all well-meant. No blemishes ever attached to us but it was a good inkling, a warning lesson, perhaps, of how tough life can be. It all began with red ink in the classroom !!

Thank you, Mr Goss.

With great warmth and affectionate wishes from us all, once again

Vijay

Vijay Khurana


My dear Mr Goss,

A very Happy Birthday to you.
I recall our Geography lessons, 39 Steps,  and your being our Housemaster !
Many Happy Returns !
Our best regards to your family.

Govinder Singh
Ibbetson 1952-1963


Hi Mr Goss: I wish you a very happy birthday. May all your wishes come true. Best regards also to your charming wife.
Joe Joshi 1
Rivaz 1954 – 1963
Commercial airline / combat pilot and war correspondent in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam.
Senior editor of print and broadcast news with worldwide experience.

Joe Joshi


Dear Mr. Goss,
Wishing you a most wonderful and a very happy birthday with all my heart.
Respectfully yours,
NP Pawa


Dear Mr.Goss
Wishing you a very Happy Birthday.
May God give you good health and happiness.Warm regards to Mrs Goss.
With lots of love.
K.Vijay Singh
Lefroy.1958-’66.


Update – people we knew. Message from Mr Goss

Dear All,

I received the following message from Mr Ronald Goss

I regret to inform you. that Mr. Das Gupta‘s daughter phoned me several months ago to inform me that he had died.  I was sorry to get the news, although it came as no surprise – he sounded very feeble the last time he spoke to me.  He was my neighbour in Remove my first two years in BCS, and we met a couple of times in Toronto.  He was a gentle man and a gifted artist   We spoke on the phone at least once a year, as was the case with Desmond and Colleen deYoung.  Mrs. Maud Williams informed me that they had both passed away but gave no details

I am forwarding two photographs from RS Sodhi’s collection sent as attachments to this mail which be of interest to those who remember them.

Warmly

Vijay
Vijay Khurana

CHRISTMAS GREETINGS [and the exchange of emails with Mr and Mrs Goss

16th Dec 2022

Dear family and friends.
Ron and I found the isolation over the past three years very tough. Especially Ron who felt that three years of his travelling life was taken away. Ron is 93 and a half, and I turned 83 last month. We did take a short cruise from Vancouver to Alaska on Sep14th, hoping the worst was over.  We welcomed the trip, but found that things were not the same. Almost everyone was dining alone, so one couldn’t meet new friends.  We returned on Sep.26th. The next day Ron went down with Covid, and I followed a few days later. Ron got a mild attack, but I had a high fever for a few days, lost my sense of taste and smell, and was left tired for quite a while. We are both on the mend but unfortunately old age is taking its toll, and Ron has been suffering with spasms in the neck and pains in his thumbs due to calcification and degeneration.
However, isolation also had its blessings: Ron really appreciated the online prayer services conducted by the Rev Tim and his assistants every weekday, a true source of peace and inspiration. Ron was also able to read some excellent books, best of all “The Other Side of Morning” written by Stephen, his first novel which is doing well in the book stores and has garnered some excellent reviews.
We are looking forward to spending Christmas with both our children Stephen and Cheryl, the grandchildren, and great- grandchildren.
We would like to take this opportunity to wish each one of you a very Happy Christmas, and a New year filled with God’s blessings for good health, Peace, and happiness.

Ronald and Yvonne, Mum and Dad, Grandpa and Gammy


21st Dec

My dear Mr & Mrs Goss,

My thanks for your mail and your Christmas Greetings. Warmly reciprocate the sentiments and on behalf of us Old Cottonians, my family and I we wish you a very happy Christmas and all the very best of health and happiness in the Coming Year.

I am truly sorry to learn that the Covid virus interrupted so much of your lives with illness and its attendant side effects.

I recall that you are inveterate and long established cruise travellers. The last figure was over 90 cruises or so which is a certainly a number not many of us have the stamina and / or the funds to undertake. Remarkably active for your respective ages and we now begin to discover what the years do to you as 70 year olds. You are well over that number !! You have kept yourselves in excellent shape and I will not attribute that to the genes alone. A well measured active life makes all the difference as so many of us are now discovering. The frequent complaints you encounter from friends these days is knee aches, arthritis, gastro changes, damaged lungs, cardiac ailments and most don’t even know about memory loss until you realise that he is using the wrong name to address you !!  I have often been called, “Vinay” instead of ‘Vijay” by nameless old friends !!

I had the pleasure of reading Stephen’s book. It was a pleasure and this writer is gifted. My compliments.

May I please request you to send us some of your latest photographs. Speaking of photographs, Mrs Goss you will probably have overseen the largest number of children for any matron of Linlithgow given the long years you spent there. The number of boys who remember you is particularly large. Incidentally did you know that Kanhaiya Lal fell to an incurable case of syphilis and Jaktu died of a cardiac arrest ?

It will also interest you to know that Linlithgow has been disbanded and children are inducted into School in a higher age category. During the 1950’s boys as young as 4 and 5 years old joined School and were parked at the Linlithgow dormitory under the care of some of the finest matrons who played mother with huge success. They are still remembered with a great deal of affection – and love.

Warm and sincere wishes for a Merry Christmas and a laughter filled and happy 2023. Add another cruise!!

Very sincerely

Vijay

Vijay Khurana


22nd Dec

Dear Vijay
Thanks for sharing the email from Mrs Goss. Teaching, I think, is a noble profession, as the teacher inspires and influences the lives of hundreds of youngsters.
I take this opportunity to wish all OCs and Mrs and Mr Goss, a Very Merry Xmas.
I hope it brings love and cheer to all your families, and spreads goodness all around.
Warm regards from warm Singapore
SM Singh
Curzon 57-64


Best Regards
SM Singh


Thank you Vijay for sharing Mr.and Mrs. Goss’s email with the warm Christmas greetings.

Many good wishes and greetings for Christmas and the coming year to you ,Mr. and Mrs. Goss
all OC’s current Cottonians , Teachers and staff..

May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields and until we meet again,
may God hold you in the palm of His hand.

traditional Gaelic blessing

Warmly
N.K.Akers


My dear Mr & Mrs Goss,

Thank you for your quick reply.

I am taking the liberty of circulating your mail. There is so much about the Goss family in your mail. There is, at the same time, a large body of interested former students who are eager to learn, “Where and what are Mr & Mrs Goss doing these days “ !! Some have already sent you individually addressed greetings for the Season.

You certainly chose one of the colder countries to migrate to but climate has hardly been a deterrent for those choosing Canada. It would appear that it is the preferred choice still and now a more welcoming destination than the United States. All I can say is please keep yourselves warm!!

Jagtu died of a cardiac arrest and this is a well known medical issue with hill folks. I did not know Kidaru and I daresay he is unlikely to be around. Changes take place all the time. Those who journey back to School with a certain feeling of familiarity and even ownership find it hard to assimilate the changes that have occurred. It goes against the grain, as it were, to their entire system. The patronising cry of agony is, “ How dare they do this, it was never the case when I was here!!”

I have not been able to retain any kind of contact with Mr Das Gupta  and I fear he may have passed on. He was in a fairly fragile state when I last contacted him which is a long while ago.

Finally, we wish you a lovely and pleasant cruise, free from the mundane daily chores of cooking and cleaning. You deserve the break and you have found an outlet that you are familiar with. Besides, you seem to enjoy it enormously.

I will write to you separately about the wedding.

Once again, good wishes for Christmas and the very best in the Coming Year.

Warm regards

Very sincerely

Vijay

Vijay Khurana


A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all .

sudhir kashyap


Merry Christmas mr mrs Goss R S Sodhi


Dear Vijay
Thanks for sharing the email from Mrs Goss. Teaching, I think, is a noble profession, as the teacher inspires and influences the lives of hundreds of youngsters.
I take this opportunity to wish all OCs and Mrs and Mr Goss, a Very Merry Xmas.
I hope it brings love and cheer to all your families, and spreads goodness all around.
Warm regards from warm Singapore
SM Singh
Curzon 57-64


Best Regards
SM Singh


Thank you – from Mr. Ronald Goss

Dear O.Cs:  

Deepak Thakur, N.K. Akers, Gurrinder Khanna, Arvind Narula, and I am sure I came across Dan Dhanoa somewhere on this page, thank you so much for your greetings.  I wish I could have had a big party on my 91st birthday and had all of you there, but this pesky virus made that impossible.  However, I had a wonderful birthday; first of all,  the day couldn’t have started off any better than it did with that phone call from Delhi from a gentleman by the name of Vijay Khurana; it made my day. The rest of 3rd May, 2020, was spent on the phone talking to so many beautiful people and reading and responding to fifty or more messages.  You call that “isolation”?  It was very kind and thoughtful of you to remember an old teacher who has now moved into that stage so aptly described by Will Shakespeare thus:

The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper’d pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side;
His youthful hose, well sav’d, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. 

And Vijay (Khurana) thank you for relaying our conversation of the 3rd so brilliantly. As always, you were so generous in your remarks. Mrs. Goss and I feel so blessed if in any small way we contributed to your success in life. Congratulations to you, one and all, for your remarkable accomplishments as true ambassadors of your school and your families.  

Many thanks again. It is a privilege to have know you and had some part in who you are today.  

Ronald Goss (BCS 1956-64)  

P.S. Gurrinder Khanna, Mrs. Goss was so thrilled to read your message.  She loved you boys as your matron.