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A place where my roots lie

- Shiva Bhusal

Jun 28, 2017-In the summer of 2010, I walked into the Pulchowk Campus for the first time. The institution—to me—was a love at first sight. Like most of the students who stood in the long line of entrance exam attendants that year, I desperately wanted to study here—an acclaimed engineering college. However, it was not the reputation, but the environment and the vibe of the place that fascinated me. Until the summer of 2010, I had never been to an institution that was as spacious and as vibrant.   

I was prepared for the worst—strict professors, stirring lectures, and fierce and competitive environment. I knew that walking out with a degree from the college would be as tough as getting into it was. 

Unlike my expectation, the college was liberal in all these aspects. Nobody forced me to do or not to do anything. Within a year, I began to enjoy all sorts of freedom. When I didn’t feel like going to the classes I would sit outside in the sun or stay back at hostel reading a good book or sometimes just go play cricket. The only thing that was tough and strict was the exam. 

Making friends was always easy. From what I know, friendship was treasured here. People from different backgrounds who beheld different stories came together to form strong kinship. 

From outside, the campus was about people who were passionate about just mathematics, programming or some other engineering practices; from the inside, it was also about the people who are guitarists, writers, singers, musicians and even actors. 

The best days were the days at hostel—particularly when our exams that ran for a whole month got over. For a month, all of us studied as much as we could. The whole phenomenon was so strange and unusual but I thoroughly enjoyed the overall process of it. It never felt like a burden. During the examination, I wished on it all to just come to an end. I thought I would be the happiest person on earth. Once the exam got over, we just went wild. 

During my final year, I used to live on the top floor of the C-block. The hostel used to be adorned by a lot of pigeons. If you ever happened to leave your windows open, pigeons would enter your room and build home inside your cupboard, sometimes even ruining your clothes. But, was I fond of those birds. 

I lived in the campus for four years. It was home. But now, the place suddenly looks alien and forgotten. Every time I go there, I feel like I am meeting an old beloved who has been forgotten and betrayed and who is always silent and rigid with her emotions. I no longer can enter into this place with same authority and freedom. I have to ask somebody else for the permit. Even that permit won’t allow me to stay for a long period of time.  This place now belongs to a newer generation. Yet, this is where my roots lie. 

 

Bhusal is currently pursuing his Master’s degree in computer science at Bowling Green State University in the US

Published: 28-06-2017 08:36

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