About a month ago, in November, just before the end-term exams, our batch was told that this winter, extra classes will be scheduled for us and the winter break (earlier scheduled from December 25th onwards) has been postponed till December 31st. Being a hosteler, this meant I had to stay in the college during the beautiful holiday season… The thought was disheartening.
Well, here is a brief account of how my days went by.
A Little Background
I did not want to miss the classes because they were to be taught by special instructors coming from IT companies, including Google! Actually, my college offers a special batch for Computer Science, known as the University Coding Academy (UCA), and I was selected for it. Special lectures on important subjects like Operating Systems, Data Structures and Algorithms are arranged for UCA, which are delivered by people having work experience in the industry. One of our instructors, Mr. Gaurav Kumar, was recently hired by tech giant Google!
Now these extra classes were to be on the Essentials of Operating Systems. We already had the Operating Systems course in our 5th semester, but to be taught OS by these guys was going to be different, I guessed. So I cancelled my train tickets (I said it was disheartening) and stayed for the adventure. The decision about me spending Christmas in the boring hostel room was taken.
The Christmas Eve
From 9th to 24th of December, I appeared in my exams. They went really well. The very next day (December 25th), I would have been in my home. But now, it was not to be. I had a day off for Christmas and then the classes from 26th to 30th. Usually, on Christmas I would go to Church with my mother, have great food and spend the day enjoying at home. And here I was, many a kilometer away from all of that.
All my roommates were already off to their homes. Being alone in a hostel room might sound dire, but I love it. I spent the evening of 24th watching a movie on my laptop. I also listened to a few Christmas songs! During all this time, I also worked on redesigning a website of mine (I love creating websites; I consider it an art and spend a lot of my spare time doing that). Later, at night, I walked into one of my friends and a great coder, Gurpreet, and had a brief discussion (lasting 2 hours :D) on programming and stuff. I called home at midnight to wish my mom Merry Christmas. And went to sleep. Quiet, calm and peaceful.
The Christmas Day
I woke up. It was Christmas! The weather was really cold and rainy. I had breakfast and came back into my room, having the whole day in front of me. Again, I opened my laptop (what more can you expect) and started playing some songs from classic Bollywood movies and from one of my favorite bands, SANAM. I also listened to songs by Pentatonix – Mary, Did You Know, O Holy Night, and others. I remember to continue designing that website throughout the day, taking some short breaks in between.
I found that somewhere deep down, I was quite happy inside. Though I am not a Christian by religion, I’ve always had a strong bond with this festival. I believe that the mere fact that it was Christmas Day was enough to make me jolly. So, it wouldn’t be wrong to say that during those short breaks, I actually danced frantically in the whole room! At night, I started a new drawing – Santa Claus sitting on a sofa, reading a book… The artwork is not yet finished because I am constantly procrastinating the coloring. The classes were going to start the next day and I had already resolved in my head that if I was going to take those classes instead of having fun at home, I was going to do it like never before – I was going to pay a lot of attention and try to grasp all of the concepts, like a proper “nerd” (although, I prefer “geek”). With all that in mind, I completed Christmas.
The classes started. I really was attentive during the lectures and let me tell you, they were not boring. Some of my most messed-up concepts about Operating Systems were demystified. I was rather enjoying myself.
On the evening of 27th, I started off something new and fun that has been recommended to me by my friends ever since 1st year – I started watching the sitcom How I Met Your Mother, and it was legendary! 😀
I had its episodes by my side for the next couple of days. I completed nearly two seasons in three days! By the 30th of December, I had better knowledge of Operating Systems, some great notes and really peaceful holiday memories. The days did not actually go that bad. And now, I’m at the railway station, waiting for the train that will take me home.
(This was written yesterday. As of now, I am on that train.)