While you embark on this gateway to life called college, much of you will be moulded by those around you: people you see everyday in class, the interactions with the SP anna, cleaning and shopkeeper annas. However, a focal point of college is the percolation of knowledge and experiences from juniors and seniors alike.
In Manipal, people develop close friendships, which takes the form of family, bonds existing in feeling rather than blood. This is especially important as caring and being cared for is essential to existing in a far-off land, thousands of miles away from home.
Whichever college you attend, having a good relationship with your seniors is key. The dynamic holds value in terms of not only academic gains but moreso, with the love that they shower upon you.
Over time, you learn why universally, people respect elders. Their experiences will be yours someday. Their mistakes will be yours. But the sharing of that knowledge, guiding your juniors, selflessly, and picking them up at times of need, dusting their shoulders off the dirt they acquire by falling down teaches you why at some places in Manipal, people refer to their seniors as Sirs or Ma’am. It’s not something thrust upon them but it is an organic practice cultured over time.
With the passing of another batch, there comes a realisation that you too will have to stand upon that pedestal some day. Someday, you too will guide someone else, tell them about your own mistakes and the right things that you have done.
Cherish those whom you have come across, met in college. Cherish those moments when you would go crying to their rooms, and their doors were always be open for you. Cherish those times, when time was kept at a standstill as you learnt values, imbibed a bit of them into yourself and dreamt of the time when some day, you might be in their position.
With the passing of another batch, there comes a realisation that you have made friends for a lifetime, bonds that have been rooted deep. That there are memories that you will keep locked up in a scrapbook in your heart.
Pen down those thoughts you have of them. Seal it in a letter and give it to those personifications of life.
Show them your love, cry for them, miss them and when the emptiness shall cease, open your eyes and see that your time too has come.
For what it’s worth, Manipal is an infectious place. Friendships and relationships break here everyday but ones that remain, remain for a lifetime.
A grateful junior.