Man’s long life may be called a journey to an unknown land. His journey may be thrilling or boring-but it is never a direct non-stop journey. Man, in his journey, stops at many places and gathers information. He also cherishes memories-some of which are quickly forgotten and some are indelible.
A student passes minor hurdles when he passes from one class to the next higher classes. He also passes a major hurdle when he leaves one institution for another. The major hurdles that he overcomes fill his heart with memories-sweet and sour.
I overcame a major hurdle when I passed the S.S.C examination and got admitted to college. My first day at college is still fresh in my mind because on that day, I felt like an explorer conquering a new region: I compared myself to Neil Armstrong when he stepped on the moon. According to Armstrong, his first step was One small step for man, a giant leap for mankind’.
When I passed the college gate that day, I too made a giant leap into an unknown strange place. I hoped to find a beautiful green field surrounded by tall trees. Instead, I found a muddy field; and there was no sign of grass.
However, when I saw the happy faces of the students, who were talking in the field, I felt much better. The college was made up of two buildings-one was old but stately and the other was new. The old building was three-storeyed and the new building was four-storeyed. There was a large field between the two buildings.
When the first bell rang all rang all the students ran towards the classrooms. The verandahs and playground became empty within the blink of an eye except for some lost students like me. Finally, a senior student helped us to find our classrooms. Our first class was Bengali/English in the room. I was charmed at the sight of our teacher. She was a very friendly teacher and she spoke very sweetly. She told us about herself and the college.
She also reminded us that our two years at college were very important. She gently warned us not to get too rowdy. She also informed us that our H.S.C results would determine our future to a great extent. Classes continued. Each class was different from the one before. Some teachers were very strict while others were very friendly. However, they all had one thing in common. They were all eager to pass on their knowledge to us. During classes and especially during recess.
I noted the manners and moods of my classmates. They were of all types-quiet, rowdy, nervous, confident or smart. I hoped to pick good friends among them and adjust with the others. I love reading books. So I looked for the college library. I found that the library was made up of two hall rooms: In one room, the books were neatly arranged on the shelves. The other room was a reading room. I saw that silence reigned supreme there.
The college common room was, in sharp contrast, a very noisy place: The place was crowded. Some boys played table-tennis-while others played carom or chess. Some boys read newspapers and magazines. Many boys just sat and watched the players in action. Everyone was happy and I felt at home instantly.
Classes ended at 3 p.m. It had been a long and exciting journey into an unknown land, and I was ready to relax and reflect on my experiences. Life means changes and challenges. That small step into college that day was really a giant leap ahead for me. That strange unknown college has now become a friendly refuge filled with many memories-both sweet and bitter.
I shall soon be leaving college but I shall always remember that time and my first day at college with great joy. It was indeed a memorable day in my life.