Don’t you just love Delhi during the monsoon? The city scape is awash in hues of green. Colourful kites flutter among the clouds. Paper boats are unleashed to inspect the puddle systems. Frogs and crickets play their jazzy tunes. Traffic jams are enjoyable, poetic even, as hundreds of us caged under the heavenly showers, wait while listening to monsoon melodies of an era gone by.
For students however, July is a ticking bomb. Your entire future, (or so you think), hangs by a single thread- Results. Gulp. Every day is the same. Eat, sleep, wait, and repeat.
The “rishtedars” all wait for the latest gossip and your parents face sleepless nights. Tossing and turning, nail biting, heart wrenching. The calendar, you stare at every day, mocks you with its defiance to move forward. The world is black and white, dismal and unchanging. The background score to your life, is a broken record.
Time passes ever so slowly. Your anxieties gnaw at your heart. Each breath, each moment, each day, exaggerated, gets dragged on and on.
Until that one fine day when the results are declared. While some students sigh in relief, others, not as much. Every year hundreds of bright minds enter the gates of JNU, and their lives are changed forever. As the new semester approaches, old and new students alike, are filled with both, a sense of determination and apprehension.
The new semester for students is the smell of new registers, of discovering new readings and falling in love with, or loathing your new professors. For some, it is the time for facing their fears and discovering the unknown, for others it is homecoming.
If you are a new student, JNU may seem bizarre, alien even. It is unlike any other educational institute you would have seen or have studied in. It’s in a jungle for Christ’s sake! There are lanes and roads leading to nowhere, and as the poets would tell you, it is when you get lost in JNU that you will discover yourself.
The existing students will inform you, and you will learn in time, how this place grows on you. Your classmates will become lifelong friends and the campus will become your home. The campus has a life and character of its own. It becomes a lover with a bouquet of flowers in spring, or a News bulletin with “Chai pe Charcha” in the evenings. It becomes an entertainer during PSR visits, and is always a stern professor, breaking down all that you knew, or ever thought you did.
JNU is a thriving, dynamic, world within a world, where students learn how they can work to change the world, within and outside. It appreciates you and critiques you, brings out the individual and helps you connect with the collective. It shatters stereotypes and reformulates concepts. It is a quagmire of ideologies and individuals, each carving a niche for itself. It is with these varied bits and pieces that a student evolves and solves the puzzle of who she is, and who she is meant to be. Once you are a part of this place, you’d feel like you had always belonged. And once you come back, you’ll feel like you had never left.
Here’s wishing you good luck for the new semester.
Divisha Srivastava is an MA student in School of International Studies and works for The Informer.