Greetings, lil’ shites.
Know that a reluctant hand types these words out, for the time for us is long past. If you’re expecting a what-to-do or what-not-to-do list during your stay at IIT Hyderabad in the next few lines, look elsewhere. I’m here to reminisce.
As a kid fresh out of factories that produce IITians by the score, I too was once like you, if that is any comfort. An arrogant little prick with an ego the size of a monster balloon, my metaphorical balloon riding on the storm of my conceit crashed into walls the size of Hogwarts. Falling into the Great Lake of IIT-H, I learnt to swim from those around me, those who had done it longer and better. And just as well, for that person would not have made it to the shore.
For those who think this place is a panacea to the problem of your life, be prepared to be disappointed. Having received the customary warning that cracking the JEE wasn’t the apogee of my life, I came here prepared to get down and grind, to do what I knew best. But that bitter pill wasn’t to be swallowed. Surrounded by a bunch of iconoclasts who were out to see for themselves what life promised, I became one with them. I decided to try and to embrace whatever I could. And that is what I consider the beginning of my life. From the clichéd all-nighters that you’ve probably heard of from every gloating senior to stripping down to Simpsons underwear in a weekly quiz, I’ve done it all. Be not surprised if you find a goofy picture or two of that sometime in the near future anywhere.
But goofiness and madness aside, there are some of those little bitter pills that you shall be forced to swallow. Grinding nights for exams not being the least, I’ve learnt to enjoy and embrace even those moments of my life. The promises that the director made regarding invention and innovation are not all for the research scholars. You will find out that research shall become at some point, a pill that you are forced to swallow, like it or not. Take it from a guy who is at the end of his life as it goes at IIT Hyderabad- you ain’t seen nothin’ mate. This place leaves you with memories, not solutions. To that end, cherish them, I shall.
As I was heaped up with questions regarding what preferences and what branches to choose, I answered all of them with a nostalgic half smile on my face knowing that the time for my preferences and course lists is now past. This has been one hell of a show, one that I wouldn’t mind watching again at any point in life. You have taken up seats in the theatre that we’re about to leave. The next time you stare out at those buildings amidst the barren land, square your shoulders and pick a stride. Walk your own pace, march to your own tune, but make sure you finish it on a high note. This is going to be home for long.
– Ganesh Mahidhar