She smells like home

She smells like home

One minute you are wondering and questioning about your choices and failures in your life and the next minute you receive a mail stating “Congratulations! You are selected in our prestigious college for the program” and a whole new world opens up to you. All those sorrows of failures, fear of the future and underwhelming feeling present just feel like they vanished in a snap. The feeling of getting a “YES” after seeing too many “NOs” is worth the wait. Well sooner won’t do any harm though.

As the day of leaving came closer, my heart started feeling heavier every day. I felt restless. I thought going to a new place which I know nothing about must be the reason. It must be the fear.  One day it hit me that I’m going to leave my home and life would not be the same ever again. There would be no one to ask whether I’ve eaten or not.

There would be no one to cajole me to take a bath and there would be no one from whom I’d be seeking unconditional attention. That’s where I lost it. I was starting to burst into tears. This is the worst feeling where you have to pretend to be strong when you are at your worst. But you know, one can fight this feeling only so much. I couldn’t help it and started crying. A few moments in, I managed to pull myself together.

I reached the city in the morning. The cold and soothing breeze caressed my face and all my fatigue from the train journey went away. I felt rejuvenated. I was pumped with the excitement of exploring new things, having new friends and starting a new chapter in my life. Well, that excitement didn’t last though. I knew the college was far and so was the hotel.

So I decided not to call an Uber. Smart move, I know. Instead, I thought to use public transport. In that way, I would be exploring new things. Despite the fact that it took me half an hour to figure out which bus to take, after all, there was a language barrier, I really enjoyed the process. After the bus dropped me, still it was a long way to walk to the hotel. And whatever I liked about this city in the morning, I started whining about it ’cause the heat was unbearable. I didn’t realise when the breeze changed into the air, but there was enormous humidity. I was sweating and cursing.

Listening to the language that I didn’t know all day, I felt out of place. I was overwhelmed by the feeling of loneliness. I missed my friends. I missed home. I realised why people call it “home sweet home”. Home is not just a place, it is a feeling that greets you when you step inside. It’s the people who love you for what you are. All these epiphanies struck me at that very moment and I felt that I should be a writer, but then the image of Chetan Bhagat floated in front of me, so I dropped that idea.

At the registration I saw a familiar face and seeing that face, my face literally lightened up. I was not alone anymore. I wondered whether she remembered me or not. It’s not that we had talked before. I was in the exam centre and so was she. And now I was at the college, so was she. After the registration, I thought of talking to her. I gave too much thought to trying to think about what to talk to her that I answered all the questions that I was going to ask her in my head myself.

In the orientation, I gave it another try. Still no luck. But in the Bootcamp, there was a task to go out and ask your classmates their names. It was a perfect opportunity. I went and asked her name, so did she. Then we talked about where we are from. We clicked almost instantly. As there was no language barrier we opened to a lot of topics. There were plenty of things in common to talk about and she grew more gorgeous by every minute we talked.

Her presence pacifies me. She smells like home.

Read Another Travel Story:

Varanasi – The Shivling behind Nandi
The Homecoming

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