After the Ball is Over

Has it really been two weeks since I last posted? I've been so busy. For your reading pleasure I've divided the last two weeks into two posts. This, and the one that will come after it.

So, it's all over. My exams went off without a hitch, my room was packed into boxes and I took my last look at the familiar University of Olympus campus. I've read that your undergraduate campus never really becomes home because you know deep in your heart it's eventually going to come to an end; and so it does.

I think there is truth in that statement. The buildings and gardens of the University don't really feel like Home in the normal sense, not the "I return here" feeling of Home, the supremely comfortable feeling of Home, even if home is not comfortable. But I am attached to the University of Olympus and all it's nooks and crannies and uncomfortableness. I couldn't walk around it lightly, I can't leave it lightly without feeling a reflective sadness, a loss for not being in that place anymore.

The morning of my last day was red-ly sunny, like the best days in Olympus. To me, the red light makes the colours all the more brighter: the greens are greener, the blues are richer, the yellows are warmer. Everything is bathed in this light. I wandered around the campus, taking it all in, not just reliving it all but also creating for myself a last memory of the place.

Am I being overdramatic? Definitely. My family's house (my home?) is only an hour's journey away by car. While I'm in Olympus I can visit any time I like. It's not the geographical space that I am leaving... it's the leaving the University of Olympus behind in time; that's the loss. I may return to the campus many times in my life, but it will never be under the same temporal conditions.

Ha. Here I am trying to de-dramaticize my comments and I'm ending up far more dramatic than before.

I made sure I said goodbye to the university before one of my uncles from the House showed up to pack up my remaining stuff (much of it had already gone). Goodbyes to places are private things. They cannot occur in the rush of packing and conversation and checking to see if you've got everything that always accompanies a move out.

Left alone in my room for the last time, I wrote 'Teshi Was Here' on the wall in the closet, in tiny letters. Uninventive, I know, but I was in a rush and I couldn't think of anything else to write.

So I left my university and my education and my campus behind and went home. The Ball- a very old term for a public formal dance- is over; the dancing, as it were, is done.

Your Real Grown Up,


1 comment:

Icarus said...

Maybe it says something about me or about the nature of the "homes" I have had, but I never had a hard time calling a place home even if I knew it wouldn't last forever. I commuted as an undergraduate, but when I spent a couple of semesters living and working at a research facility out in the belt (please don't ask me for details--it's classified) I felt like it was home, even if only for the eight months or so I spent there. Certainly when I went to graduate school on Earth, I saw my new surroundings as home, and, in fact, bristled whenever people referred to my parents' home as "back home" for me--as in "are you going to call home?" "Are you going home over the summer?" This is home, thankyouverymuch.

I was, if anything, a little too eager to reject the home and family of my youth.