It has been like whaat two weeks or so since i last FED this page “instagram” has been OVER-FED though…i wish i published more often though…but laziness combined with,….well laziness again has contributed largely to my wish not being fulfilled. Four years as an undergraduate has come and are almost gone, not for me alone, but for me and my other beautiful colleagues.
It is a total truth that a journey of a thousand miles begins with just one step. This time around, the steps are replaced with years. I recall my arrival to the town (nyeri), three years and some months ago. You need to see the look on the young girl’s face; peeping through the matatu’s window as if I’m at the scene of the 10th world wonder. After a few minutes drive, we got into the school area and the real feeling kicked in. My heart beat pattern changed from soul and blues to rock within seconds, many thanks to agitation. I began to question myself, “Am I seriously going to cope in this environment?” Ordinarily I shouldn’t be so nervous, but a number of factors made it a must. Trust me, I’d tell you but thats a story for another day.
My undergraduate days wasn’t just about that alone. I’ll focus more on a few interesting ones; the people I met (met lots of wonderful ones as a matter of fact), the rigours of studying and hard times—yes, strenuous but interesting—and several others I can’t quite categorize. I’ll delve into a few and see if you experienced something similar.
First time in any place or setting is always somehow boring for some people, especially timid people like I used to be. I remember sitting down in one corner throughout my first week in the university, acting as though I was not one of the students. My first year in school wasn’t really fun since I didn’t mix or get myself involved besides going for lectures and returning back to my hostel as soon as I’m done. I discovered I missed lot of things later on. I made lots of friends over the years though, most of them interesting people. There was a time in my final year when I actually looked back to this period (fresher days as we all call it) and the clear distinction led me to the conclusion; I’m not who I used to be. Who or what to be blamed? I have no clear-cut answer. Just another proof that change is inevitable.
Teaching is often called the noble profession and I believe lecturing—a close equivalent yet with differences—deserves to at least feature as well in the good name. In the course of my journey as an undergraduate I passed through lots of lecturers. Some were particularly excellent teachers who did their best to make sure we understand what’s been taught, not minding the stress and hard gesticulation it would cost (much bravo to *Prof*). You really need to see him go down low…and up (literally), just to make the impression and get his points made. Those are the kind I ought to tag THE GOOD. Of course, there are quite a few who we couldnt really understand what they teach but will always demand more from you. They teach you in English and expect you to answer them in French…with serious accent (figuratively)! I’m sorry I won’t write names but you sure know the likes. Undoubtedly, they are THE BAD. The last category are those who are exceptionally too active, they won’t let the ladys rest! The future wives for crying out loud! May God punish devils (say amen please). Some woo ladies as a young guy would, others involve your course/grades so you’ll have to agree or fail (remember you didn’t hear this from me). Those are most definitely THE UGLY. Truth be told, the ladies are to be blamed sometimes, but what of the other times? The other times? #Lips sealed
The issue of securing seat during the exams and the melodrama attached with it is one thing I can’t possibly forget. In fact, about half of the whole class acknowledged it’s one thing they’ll miss about the class. Perhaps you don’t know what I mean exactly, it is the paramount thing back then, especially in the final year. You get to school as early as possible just to get a seat, yet you’ll still discover the spaces are already taken…many thanks to the concerned friends. If you decide to pretend you don’t know what’s going on and try sitting on the taken space, the popular words come out; Someone is there.
I know I never really lived much of what I’ll call my-campus-dream-come-true, but I did have my own fair share. If you want to live reasonably large in Nyeri town you’re good to go, so long you have what it takes—money. In the same vein, if you choose to lay low comfortably, you’re also in the right place. I remember the way we spend back then just when the periodic allowance comes in (HELB), a week like that is what we call the week of pride (kujichocha) because we make sure we savour the moment and wait for the inevitable ugali and kales (ugali veve) and sturungi—that thing in our pots we call food—thereafter. A combination of many things and rice; an undebbuged version of the software “mchele njeri”. Undergraduate days really taught me how to konkorct practically anything. I mean anything! Just name it. Over time, I got the lesson and learnt to spend judiciously. Who said hunger is not a wonderful teacher?
One of the tiring things about my undergraduate days was the more than once in a while strikes. We all seem to have one complain or the other every now and then. I needn’t say all these affects more directly than indirectly. Being chased by makaraos with tear gas. It was fun participating though, I think you understand (*whispering*…kurushia makarao mawe). I strongly hope she (my mom) won’t read this piece any time soon. Except if you attended a private university, it is almost impossible to complete a four year course in exactly four years.
I remember the days of repeated sessions in the library in the endeavour to make straight ‘A’s (or something very close at least) and accomplish my aims in the university. (I slept throughout on my first attempt), but I really enjoyed the few times I went. The attendance during the exam periods would make you think there is a lecture scheduled in the library, to be attended by the serious and the unserious alike. Ordinarily, studying in the library is supposed to allow one read very well, far away from the temptations of the comfy of one’s bed and to motivate when you see others reading, but it also serves other purposes. First, it offers some, a bed away from their own bed. They get to read a few lines and, well… Au revoir! (I’ve actually witnessed a snorer). Second, it’s a great way to show the I’m-serious facade even if the person is totally otherwise. Third, it proffers an avenue for gisting and ronzing; if you know what i mean. After all, “man must not live by bread (books) alone….” The list continues.
Life as an undergraduate was actually one of the good and the bad happening concurrently. Mere thought of the happy moments makes me smile, and sometimes laugh out loud uncontrollably (not in public though). The talks and gists, packagings, trips, scandals, parties, crazy politics, assignments (plus the ‘copy and paste’ that accompanies it), final year project, relationships (coughs), bla-bla-bla. Others that I don’t like include the legendary awaiting results , the stress and uncomfortable lectures, the long queues for anything and everything… and saddest of all, the feeling when a fellow pays the supreme sacrifice. Sincere commiseration to all of us who lost someone, we are indeed, pencils in the hand of the creator. It’s been by His grace we are where we are today, not by anyone’s doing.
SO WHAT??…..am sure a lotta my colleagues woulda asked themselves this same question!!…Now its time to do the next important thing, for some people its to make money, for others its to get married(several names readily pop into my head) for others its to further education,am not too keen on that though most especially not in this same country that supposedly has given me most of my education till-date, and for others they simply don’t know!!!i don’t blame them though no need to rush right? Tuko Kenya na hakuna matata!
Soon enough i will change status and become a graduate (not borne out of pride). Although the memories will always linger. It’s time for other things entirely; fresh challenges, opportunities, endeavours, aspirations and many more. It’s time to correct the mistakes of the past and improve on the good stuffs. Time to be a better version of oneself because better days lie ahead.
First you have to find whats truly important and that might require a deep soul searching, then you GO-FOR it.Before you climb that ladder make sure it’s not leaning against the wrong wall!!else every step you would be taking would get you to the wrong place FASTER!!! I wish everyone i have come across during my 4 YEAR journey as an undergraduate the best…….aurovoir….
A toast to a wonderful future fellas….
Happy Mashujaa Day.
You are all my heroines and heroes….kinda…technically..y’all insane and have managed to not kill yourself upto now..true ninjas!😘😘