If you spend half a decade at one place, it’s only natural that you’re going to think about how the changes you witness a place going through. With cities, you often view this in the form of progress – oh, look, there’s a new road being built, or hey, here’s the new rapid transit system the Government’s set up for us. And as you live and as you grow, you see your surroundings evolve as well.
Bangalore was one such phase in my life. Moving from Dubai, I moved into a city I had terrible misconceptions about – yet, by my final year there, I couldn’t tell Dubai and Bangalore apart (in a sense). I saw Bangalore grow. I saw Whitefield become a part of the Bangalore map, and eventually become the overpopulated, congested mess it now is.
I go through the same feelings at a very micro-level at every institution I’ve studied at. My first day at Inventure, the school celebrated having 500 kids. I could recognize all of them within my first term – if not by name, atleast by “Grade”. I knew relative ages of everyone. Soon, we saw an influx. Our school was small, so to speak. By the time I left, and each time I visit now, I get the sense things aren’t the same anymore. There are too many people I don’t recognize. There’s a new floor, there are new rooms. It’s all pretty different. For me, different, with my past, is a little uncomfortable because it takes away a lot of the nostalgia. Unlike “3 Idiots”, my friends and I are never going to have a moment where we go back to school and giggle like the idiots we really are about something dumb we did in the past. Or atleast, it doesn’t look like it. But the school has grown, and that’s something i don’t think you’ll ever stop feeling fiercely proud about.
Cut to University, and 3 years in, I can sense the change in the way the wind blows, in a way. When you study in a 5 year course, you see people born across 9 years – including your own batchmates. If you start your course in 2015, you’d see people born in 1993, and end college with kids born in 2002. It’s pretty insane. The generation gap is huge, and that reflects a fair amount in the way people carry themselves on campus.
With each new batch coming in, it also gives you opportunity to think about how you want to leave this place vis-a-vis how you entered. I, for one, entered this University with a Coca-Cola bottle in my hand and a goofy smile on my face because the architecture amazed me. I don’t think that would be a terrible way to go out, to be honest.
But, speaking more realistically – you end up asking yourself important questions. How happy are you being here? Has your enthusiasm died down? Do you see your image reflected in any of the first years? Can you identify with any of them? Do you feel old? Does that scare you? Do you want to be remembered on campus? Why does all of this bother you so much?
The truth is that it doesn’t.
Frankly, I really don’t think about these things. How I want to be remembered and whatnot is far too vague for me to comprehend. But if anything, I’d like to be, at present, someone who people are able to find a friendly face in. A lot of kids end up leaving their homes to come to University, and unfamiliar territory can be extremely scary.
If I’m able to be someone that helps people be themselves again – instead of what they’re pretending to be – because let’s face it, the first week of University is, in a lot of ways, pretense, I’ll be a happy man.
What a musing, I say.