Part 3 – “Love at first sight: visiting MICA for GE/PI”
The lunch was complimentary by MICA for all the candidates and people who accompany them, who come to campus for GE/PI. This was also another delight because we don’t get such perks while visiting campuses for our PIs and it is a sure winner for an anxious candidate. This also provided a good opportunity to bond with others over lunch. We were all supposed to have our lunch in the mess and that ensured that we get access to explore more of the campus and get a sneak-peak into the life at campus.
When one moves towards the residential area, it feels like all roads lead to the mess, and rightly so. It is a quaint, small building and is made of red-bricks like every other building on the campus. There are many windows to provide adequate brightness and open air. It was bubbling with the activity at the lunch hour. Everybody stands in a line to get food, be it faculty or guests or students, which is a nice feel. It is a self-serving facility and you need to serve your own food. One can take as many servings of almost every item on the menu as one wants. The food was delicious and presented a lot of options to choose from. This was exactly what we needed to soothe our nerves on that important day. We all enjoyed the yummy delicacies and had fun interacting with each other.
After lunch hour we all assembled in the Audi again, as was instructed to us. This was our camping area for the rest of the day. Some of us had already had our interviews and just needed to chill and wait for the results. Others were waiting for their interviews. By lunch time, everybody had finished their GEs. We were cheering up the people who were being called for interviews. Some groups were playing Antakshari and other such games. Some people decided to just doze off in the coziness of the Audi. Some of us were carrying our laptops and someone started playing music on it. It was a perfectly lazy, carefree afternoon. It felt blissful to be there at that time.
By around 4 PM everybody from our group had finished their PIs and we still had some free time to kill. We all wanted to take a complete campus tour. But we had to cancel halfway as the day had become too hot and humid by then. An April afternoon can be really hot in Ahmedabad. It was such an afternoon. We took a small break at the ‘MiCafe’ – the Nescafe snacks counter on campus – located near the academic block. The area in front of the MiCafe is done very tastefully using simple elements like stones, bricks etc. A lot of interesting seating space was created out of these simple structures and a little creativity.
After the small break at ‘Micafe’, we all moved to ‘Chota’ – the famous and much beloved canteen on campus. This is the only place on the campus catering to the random hunger-pangs of students 24×7. It is given a very rustic look and has some very interesting decorative elements to create the illusion of a village kind of set-up. There are some lamps hanging from the trees, ‘Khaats’- cots made of cotton threads – to sit on, birds chirping nearby, tyre -swings to go back to childhood days. A life-size ‘Snakes and Ladders’ was painted on the floor, which made it quite an interesting sight. We were told it was done by the students and it gets regular touch-ups.
On one corner there was a class in progress. Yes, a class in the canteen. Everybody sat on the floor and looked totally immersed in their on-going discussion, completely oblivious to their surroundings. Picturing ourselves attending classes in such an informal setting made us want to come to this amazing place even more. We enjoyed on the swings, sipped teas and clicked some pictures to memorize this day. We all knew in our hearts that some of us might not make it to MICA after all. Hence we wanted to remember this day fondly. It was amusing how close we felt even on our first meeting with each other. We sure had formed a close bond.
It was around 7 PM by now and all PIs for the day were done with. Everybody was eagerly waiting for the results. The wait was killing.
To be continued….