Richard Cliff, Clint Eastwood and More
Beautician Farzana Shakil
talks to Sumaiya Ahsan Bushra
Courtesy: Farzana Shakil
I have distant memories of my school days. All that I can recall is that the best part about school life was the fact that most schools I attended had huge playgrounds. Be it baseball, basketball or any other form of sport we always had a playground where we could let ourselves go free. I remember my teachers were very friendly and we all maintained a good teacher-student relationship. However, there was this one incident in one of my schools where I was selected to perform a dance in a cultural programme. I wasn't selected because I knew how to dance but because I had beautiful long hair. After the dance was completed one of the teachers began to pull my hair accusing me of wearing a tarsal. Completely thrown aside by the sudden act I tried my level best to convince her that it wasn't fake hair at all and after much persuasion she finally believed me.
For me, the shift from school to college involved no colossal changes. The uniform was almost the same, the strict rules and disciplines were same, and the 'all girls' factor was also the same. Freedom was nowhere to be found. But, the most cherished and precious experiences of my youth are indeed the days of my college life in Holy Cross College. I learnt a lot from my college days - some of which I still implement in my daily life. Those lessons have helped make me become the person I am today. One amusing incident that I recall from my college days was that once I had to participate in a 'Dress as you like' competition and we all had to dress in the queerest manner possible. I remember I wore a nylon sari with a different colour petticoat and multi colour ribbons to tie my hair. And I remember my friend and I were coming home in a rickshaw and everybody stared at us, like we were clowns!
In my college days, the singer, Cliff Richard, came to perform once and we were all extremely thrilled. That experience of attending a live performance by an international celebrity was just breathlessly amazing. Although I had a fair share of fun in college, my mother was always very strict. I wasn't allowed to put any makeup and I also had to stitch my own clothes. I had this book where I used to keep pieces of pictures and articles from magazines I found interesting. I guess my interest to become a makeup artist and a designer began to grow from there. There was this one time we had to do a dance performance based on the theme of an English song. And I suggested the girls to use a sari and a nice thick lace to make a gown. The result was absolutely fabulous!
There were rare occasions when I got into trouble at home, during my college days. But there was this one incident where I went to watch 'Dirty Harry', which stars one of my favourite actors Clint Eastwood. On returning home from my friend's place, my parents asked me why I was late. I told them the truth and yes, I got scolded severely. But my unparallel admiration for Eastwood took me back two more times to watch the same movie.
The next phase of my life was University. Since I studied International Relations at Dhaka University, my studies always dealt with serious issues. So academically it wasn't that exciting. However, this was the first time that I was exposed to the co-ed environment and it was a bemusing experience for me. The little group outings, eating fuchka and munchies were always great fun. Even though, I was married while I was still studying in the second year, my husband always encouraged and supported me. After completing my university, it was my husband who pushed me to work towards establishing myself as a make-up artist and designer.
Taking a glimpse back at those days, I truly miss them. I would trade anything, any day, to go back to those golden moments of my life!