Saturday, November 12, 2011

roommates

The room was large, airy and overlooked vast dry fields with the highway snaking through them. You could see the brown horizon-hills through the early morning mist, the forest fires burning quietly in summer, and the mysterious blue bus that went past every morning at 7. Our delight knew no bounds. This was a room we had chosen as ours. It was a room that did not have whitewash peeling off the walls cornering the floor with fresh white powder everyday. The chuna had been one of our greatest problems the previous year and had been a great source of dismay to whoever took pains to sweep the room. Though Dee rearranged the furniture every two months in hope of making more space, that room stayed stuffy and overcrowded. But this new place was paradise.  This was the stuff of daydreams. 

Three iron beds sat at comfortable distances from each other. Three almirahs, their doors covered in half-peeled stickers and grafitti of last year, were soon stuffed with clothes, cosmetics, footwear, books and other once-considered-indisposable items that sat unused, in doleful hope of proving their worth someday. Dee's space was undoubtedly the cleanest, with her bed made, things neatly in place and cupboard nice smelling because of soap covers hidden under the newspapers. Alpi stacked so many things in her cupboard that you couldn't tell if it was messy. Mine betrayed signs of a compulsive hoarder.

We hardly ever hung out outside the room, but constantly made plans to tour the country. We planned and prepared birthday surprises for each other. We discussed school life (ah, the joys of icse!). We covered for each other. We gossiped. We washed clothes at midnight. We got high during the rains. We took care of drunks. We moved together room to room and lost things. We cribbed about the lost items till we'd lose something else. We shared goodies from home. We knew each other's secret places for hiding keys. Sometimes these secret places gave away other secrets. We saw each other through some alarming episodes of sleepwalking.

We endured each other's eccentricities with great forbearance -  Dee's hypochondria, Alpi's hyperactivity and my mood swings. Dee cribbed about feeling sleepy during exams. I cribbed about late night noise. Alpi cribbed about poor quality rotis. We all cribbed about the crows.

When we moved out, we contributed to the room in our own ways, leaving several bits of cellotape on the wall with remnants of posters stuck to them,  agarbatti stands by the desks (the night Dee thought there were ghosts in the room and we had to get rid of them by calling upon holy forces) and colourful clothes clips, which some juniors must be grateful to us for.

3 comments:

Casy said...

Memorable days in hostel! I miss them!

Casy said...

Reminded me of my hostel days. Called up a friend I shared my room with, after I read your post :). Thanks. It felt really nice to recall :)

Casy said...

Reminded me of my hostel days. Called up a friend I shared my room with, after I read your post :). Thanks. It felt really nice to recall :)