Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Life in a sweater

I wore the sweater on my journey to Bangalore. It felt nice to wear a sweatshirt. Warm and cosy. Back home, if you're seen wearing one, you've either got fever or you're raving mad.
I've never owned a sweater. Somehow, in Goa, it really isn't necessary. The weather is perfect at 3 in the morning, when you're insane enough to be out or you happen to be between 15 and 30 years old.
Pleasant weather accompanied me on the arduous journey to Kumbalgudu. Of course, I couldn't skip the fact that you have to feel extremely hot in that thing once the clock strikes the wrong side of 12. But I enjoyed the feeling of snuggling up inside the XL, finding my comfort spot in the bus and sleeping away the journey. Besides, when you're slim, it does look kinda cute to wear oversized clothes once in a way. Now that I've piled on the pounds, it makes one look depressingly larger than one actually is.
When you come from a place that does not warrant wearing anything more than shorts and a tee, it becomes sort of exciting to wear a sweater. It's like dressing up for an occasion. You wear that piece of clothing reserved for special occasions. Standing in front of the mirror, you check to see how the collar sits, or the way it falls just above your buns and fits just right over your wrists.
Also, timing is everything when it comes to wearing your sweater. If it's noon and you happen to be in one, you will risk looking like grandpa on his way to the bank. It must be a little chilly with a slight wind whipping around the ears, so you can hug yourself and fall asleep in class. However, if you happen to one of those haunting the streets at some unearthly hour, just your sweatshirt and you will find a certain idiot turned into a human icicle. Warm inner wear is safe. After all, you have to show off that sweater of yours. ;)
I have been living in the World of the Sweatshirt for 4 months now. Been there, done that in the sweatshirt I'm writing this in. One thing I've learnt is to carry more than one sweater when you move away from home to a place far away from the dry cleaners. You're so used to it that you don't realise that you begin to smell 'sweatshirty' even when you aren't wearing one (which is extremely rare). Even your bag emits the sweatshirt aroma: that mouldy-clothes smell mingling with a little bit of sweat, and the dirt and grime of 4 months of walking filthy streets and smokey by-lanes.
The black sweatshirt that I began my journey in has become my second (albeit pretty loose) skin. It has received, most lovingly, the peeling skin, the cookie crumbs, the omnipresent dandruff, and the occasional longing look of someone without one. It's a different question that the someone would prefer to freeze than wear a sweater that hasn't been washed for 16 weeks.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

I'm going home....

I'm actually starting to miss home now. All this while, I couldn't have cared. I was away for the first time in my life, but it was fine. I didn't really miss things the way others in the hostel did. I was happy and comfortable. Adjusting to hostel life was easier than I thought. True, noone can sub the guys back home, but this was going to be home for the next few months and I didn't fuss. It really is a nice place to live in.

Maybe the realization that I will be back home in only a month and a half has made me yearn for it all the more. The semester break had to coincide with the Christmas break, didn' t it?! And Christmas is the most enjoyable time in the year, not only because I am Christian, but also because I am Goan. It's one of those festivals everyone celebrates. It's the season everyone waits for-there's parties and dances and food. The weather is really pleasant and perfect for both midnight mass and picnics.

People are reminding each other to book tickets; most already have. I'm travelling by bus and since advance booking doesn't start until 15 days before departure, I'm probably the only one who hasn't got a ticket home. Seats get filled up faster than an alcoholic's glass. What if I don't manage to get a ticket home? What if I've to spend the most amazing time of the year in an empty hostel when everyone at home is celebrating the 'family' festival? I know I'm sounding paranoid, but I guess that's it. I do want to go home and I can't imagine ever spending Christmas alone.

You know, I think I should just shut up. I'm sure to get a ticket. After all, I've passed the buck on that one to my dad. He's going to make sure I get home-not for anything, but to have me enjoy myself. And they do miss me. Mum's already wondering how she's going to manage making Christmas sweets this time. Jonathan's busy with final year and I won't be home until the 21st. I'll miss making the sweets and mum yelling that we aren't allowed to taste them until after mass. I'll miss putting up the tree and painting the paper for the star. Jonathan's going to have to do the deco alone, and I won't be there to whine when we change the cushion covers or clean out the cobwebs. We aren't going to have our regular fights over who's done how much work and then sneak Christmas cookies, bolinhas, and marzipan together.

You know what? I'm going home for 15 days and I know I'm going to stuff all these things into those days. I know J and I will fight, I know I'll put up some deco, I know I'll make cookies and eat them as well, get yelled at and yell back, go for picnics and laze at home, party and exercise....Well then, 48 days and counting.