To the Friends We Call Home

“They’re not just temporary surrogates, they are there for me during my years away from home; I hope they will forever be a part of my life.”

                                                                                                       – Ekta Kumar

My fondest memories of college lie in someone else’s dorm room, nestled between a laptop, a bowl of Maggi and a messy stack of well worn playing cards. My wing mates and I have shared many a late night, for reasons ranging from insomnia to our inability to stop talking to each other. As a result of our bonding, we have created our own version of the old- married-couple dynamic. They’re not just temporary surrogates, they are there for me during my years away from home; I hope they will forever be a part of my life.

The similar closeness of relationships can be found at BITS and at many other colleges campuses. There is something about taking a group of teenagers and putting them together in the same place for four years and telling them to work, eat and play together that makes connections unlike the relationships formed in any other part of life.

My time at BITS, is the first time I’ve spent four years at one school. I moved a lot when I was growing up, changing a grand total of thirteen schools and three countries. During my many changes, I made many friends but I lost contact with just as many. It wasn’t impossible to catch up, but even with the advent of new technology, I often failed at keeping up with my previous friendships while adapting to my new environment.

I’ve started to reflect on the singular strength of college friendships, I’ve always thought it was the length of time you’ve known a person that solidified my relationships. However, after speaking to some of my friends back home, I’ve realised that there must be another variable at work in this college friendship equation. The friendships that I’ve made at college are also special, even though they’ve only existed for a mere two years.

Regardless of how we grew up, or how many friends we had before we left for college, we all left to live away from our families for the first time. We left, not only to get the best education, but to grow up into the sensible and mature adults  we are to become after we graduate. We are left to self-evaluate, to discover who we are and who we want to be, as soon as we arrived in the first year.

Although, I am physically still the same person as I have always been, I have matured a lot in these past two years. I came to BITS, as a freshman planning to study Instrumentation, but I hope to leave this college as a resilient and independent adult with memories to last a lifetime. College is a time of exponential growth, with time as a fast paced variable.

All of the discoveries and struggles of the past two years, I’ve made with my friends. We were there for each other during those late nights and never-ending tests, when textbooks might have been thrown and loud exclamations about our frustrations might have been uttered. On those days when getting to the mess before it closed seemed impossible, and the all night canteen became our saviour. My friends have encouraged my growing passion for research, and were just as excited as I was when I started working on informal projects in my past semesters. We fought together in the trenches against the stresses of college and celebrated our undergraduate highs together. It’s these shared experiences that will forever link us together.

They say, the best part about BITS is in its culture, I have met many amazing people here who are kind, funny, and smart. I could go on about the long conversations I’ve had, ranging from the Hunger Games to the latest news. I worry, that as graduation looms on us, we may never be able to have those conversations again. I can’t help but wonder, about the grand-scale fragmentation that will come into our lives as we depart from this college. The people I know will scatter, and the things they meant to me, their place in my life, and mine in their’s will only have meaning when we come together, as fragments of a whole.

Cover Designed By Vishnu Teja

Article By Ekta Kumar and Shubhi Jain 


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