Thursday, September 10, 2009

School Day One

July 28, 2007

This is a description of my first experiences at school in India. I attened Brijal Biyani Science College for one year. It's located in Amravati, India.

Day One

I was anxious to start school since I had been here over a month and hadn't done too much out of the house. Now I had the chance to make some new friends outside of family and meet different types of people. I didn't know what to expect at all. The college I'm attending is called Brijal Biyani Science College. I've known the courses I would be taking are English, Hindi, Math/Statistics, Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. Very sciencey. So the first day I went, really not with a clue what to expect.

My host father drove me by moped to this girl Shivani's house. Her family is friends with mine and so they figured it would be good if I had someone to accompany me my first day. So Shivani became my first friend outside of family. I got on her moped and we headed out towards college and met up with some other girls, whose names I can't remember yet. There were tons of people when we got to the college and a parking lot jammed full of bikes/mopeds facing in all directions. They appeared not to think about how they would possibly get out of the mess after school. So I hopped off before we entered the parking lot and met up with Shivani after, and met a bunch more people whose names I can't remember either. :P We went into the lecture hall, where all the 11th standard students were told to meet. All the shoes were piled up outside the door. I had worn strap-on sandals which was a mistake because I couldn't take them off real quick so ended up hopping/avoiding the mob of people. When I entered the room I was astounded by how different it was already. The boys were on one side of the room sitting and the girls on the other. Also, everyone was organized and sitting perfectly cross-legged, even though no teacher or anyone had instructed them how to sit. I wondered why it was that they sat so perfectly organized here, but discarded their shoes and bikes in the most unorganized way. Well I sat, feeling quite pale among all these people, and tried to imitate their posture of perfection.

Everyone was talking and I was meeting everyone around me. Then the principal walked in and everyone stood up instantly and said "Good morning sir" I was just barely able to keep up without falling on the person in front of me. Then we sat and he began to talk about dress code, basic rules, how the college is open and not strict. What I found amusing was when he asked what people planned to do after Biyani. First he asked how many would like to be engineers, all but about ten raised their hands, and those remaining ten wanted to be doctors. Here, there are very few options but medical and engineering fields. I am not shy and ask tons of questions, like whether or not they actually want to become engineers, and typically the answer is no. Its sad to see these people work so hard and spend so much time studying to go into a field they don't like. The principal also made quite a few science jokes, which I couldn't help but laugh along with. I think I laughed most because the rest of the students were cracking up. "Wouldn't you like to preserve your brain in formaldahyde so that all the information stays in, or maybe keep a magnetic field around." This one got a bunch of laughs.

When that was finally over and I could move my cramped legs, I went back with Shivani to her house, ate food, filled in some of her Slambook. (it's a type of book for friends to fill out to get to know them better) and then she had her art class, and I was invited to go as well, so I did. A couple of her friends were in that too. She was practicing calligraphy, her friend using watercolor. I met the man who ran the class. The class is located on the side of the road, it's just a small room in the open with canvas, paints, newspapers, and brushes everywhere. I got to sketch, because I had said that I had an interest in art, so he gave me a test. He handed me a magazine cover featuring a Bollywood actress (Aishwarya Rai) and told me to sketch it. I did, and surprsingly it came out alright. He even approved, after checking it with a ruler (There lips were actually about 1cm off) So I then signed up for the class. Now I have that everyday after college.

After that nothing too eventful happened. I went to the market, which is always fun, and bought a schoolbag and pencil case that is suitable for college for $4 US. I'm actually getting really cheap. I felt like I spent too much after buying the bag. :)



My photo
Ithaca, New York
Hey! I'm eighteen. I love elephants. My personal movie collection consists of Slumdog Millionaire, Mulan, and the Illusionist. (not saying those are my favorite movies, I just own them) I am a hookah fanatic. I am NOT a socialist, even if my Bio teacher wishes I was. I'm a college kid, a freshman journalism major. Oh I also eat popcorn daily.