Not a day passes by, when my friends and I feel bad that our college lives ended as soon as it started. It all seems to be in the distant past. No matter what we did, and what I wrote previously, I must confess, that the best and the most fun-filled part of my life till now has been my college life, and I believe it will be so in the years to come as well. I met some of the best friends of my life here. They have been with me through ups and downs. Truthfully, all of us feel that we came out as “men” when we left college. We hurt a lot of people (physically and mentally), and we got hurt by a lot of people (mentally only ;-)). We did a lot of good things that few people know about, and a few bad things that everyone knows about. But in the end, the good memories overwhelm the bad ones and what we gained far outweighs what we lost.
I was well known for my carelessness. (Please note the use of the word “was” -> hopefully I have changed now.. 😉 ). The day of the twelfth standard results came. I went to school and checked the result. It was 200, 200, 199, 188 (I am not sure about the order of the first three but I think 188 came after these three.) I was shocked. I looked up and down and made sure that I was looking at my entry only. Sadly, it was mine. I had lost 12 marks in Maths which meant I was going to lose 6 marks in my cut-off. My entrance mark was around 88 or 89, I think. That meant I had a very low cut-off, at least by my standards back then. I was quite broke and did not know what to do. I had high hopes of getting into Anna University, and all of that seemed a distant possibility. When the counseling schedules came, I was scheduled to attend on the morning of the second day. (When I had applied for the xerox of my Maths paper, I found out that I had copied the question wrongly from the question paper for two sums. :-D)
My center was GCT, Coimbatore. My mother was among the first batch of EEE students there, and a lot of people, lab attenders and professors remembered her well. Anyway, on the night before the second day, my family and I put up in a hotel in Coimbatore. We were checking the availability of seats online, and I was dejected to find that a lot of good colleges did not have any seats left. My mother had told me long back that SSN was growing well and it was a really good college. We could not see how many seats were left here because of the shitty Internet facilities back then. Also, I was very particular that I wanted to take up Computer Science and nothing else. I cried that night with dreams broken and my future uncertain. Karunya seemed to be the last place if everything else failed and I was talking to my father about that. My father, however, was livid with rage because I had not lived up to his expectations and refused to pay any donations to let me join a college.
The next day, I did get my seat at SSN. When I came out, I met a lean guy who had come up after me. We found out that we were not only going to be college mates, but department mates as well. He was from Salem. We went for the medical check-up. My identification mark was a mole just below my right chest and the doctor told me take off my shirt to check it. A girl was already inside and I was kind of embarrassed. Anyway, after the girl left, all the formalities were over, and I came out a very happy boy. I said good bye to my department mate and made for home. That fellow is none other than J. Ashok Singh Abraham (JASA, Aaaya, Hero of SSN looking for a heroine). When I came back, I got a call from my school mate. He was also going to be my department mate. That was V. Venkatraman (Ice). I also got another call from my long-time class mate in school telling me that he had taken ECE in the same college. That was Navin. C. We were all excited and started making plans.
I told my parents that I needed a new computer because my old one was quite worn out. There was a huge ruckus because my father refused initially. I made quite a scene and I finally got one the day before I left for Chennai. I did not know what to take with me because it was my first time in the hostel. My mother, sister and I left by train the day before the college opened. A few of my friends came to the railway station to send us off. I cried, but did not know why. I stopped soon, but did not know how. We put up at my grandparents’ place in Ambattur, and the next morning we left in an Omni van taking a bed, my other grandfather’s military trunk box, my computer, buckets, blankets and the like. We came to the hostel and I found Jasa, Ice and the rest of the guys waiting there. I got a lot of advice from all my elders and we left for the inauguration function. Everything was so colourful all around me ( 😉 ). I found out that none of the guys I knew initially and I were in the same class. Anyway, I felt it would be good to meet up with some new people as well. After the inauguration, my grandparents, my mother and my sister left, and I went to the humanities block. I searched around for my class for some time. A little bit later, I found it on the first floor. With a deep breath, I entered ‘B’ section.