24th September, 2009
Venue: Vaishanvi Hall, Manipal
Abhi: I, on behalf of all the second year students give a hearty welcome to all to the new faces for the Fresher Party’09…
Archana: Those faces which have become a year old and no longer remain new………… (Continuation …)
I was on the stage, compeering for the Fresher party for our juniors. It was then I realized that one year had sped so fast. I was on the same stage exactly one year back ago, performing as a fresher and introducing myself. One would wonder how a Fresher Party could be of such importance even at a post graduate level. It might not be like that for everyone but for me it was the first fresher party I was attending. I didn’t have the privilege of attending a Fresher Party in my under graduation due to restrictions put by the college authorities.
I didn’t have the time to think about the past there as I had to carry on with my compeering. One by one the juniors came and introduced themselves. The evening was full of colour, wickedness (as per the theme for the fresher party), full and frolic. We enjoyed ourselves to the maximum. After the party I came back home and went down the memory lane again.
One year began with the Fresher party where we performed on stage and for the first time each person there tried to discover the hidden potentials within them. Many of my classmates refused to actively participate but when a handful came forward to help me and my co- CR, Abhi out, organizing any show wasn’t difficult at all for us. We pulled it off well. We started mingling with each other. Studies went along which occupied the major chunk of the time that we spent.
The trend of roaming around in campus and wiling away time by simply chatting, eating out, and exploring new places was replaced by the study hours in the library. Studying Anatomy, Physiology and Bio- Chemistry together seemed a pain for all those who were from a non medical background. We were picking up pace slowly.
I still remember the day we had to enter the dissection hall. I had not dissected anything except a flower in my school days. The maximum I did was that I had dissected a fish that too wearing gloves with the help of my friend as being a vegetarian I couldn’t bear the smell of fish. After that I didn’t bother studying Botany and Zoology, thanks to my course in VIT. This time I couldn’t have escaped. What a progress!!! I was entering a dissection hall where there were steel tables, arranged in one row and each table had one cadaver (dead body in layman terms). We were instructed to carry our own forceps to the lab. I had no idea as to what was going to happen in the lab. My friends started telling their stories about the dissection labs which they had heard from their seniors. We always had dissection classes on Friday’s and it was for 2 hours and it used to be just before lunch. I didn’t speak a word. I just needed the courage to face it. We wore our lab coats and entered the lab and an irritating odour hit my smell receptors. My eyes started burning and the first thing I did was to out my handkerchief on my nose. It was horrible and then each table had one cadaver mostly 5 year old, some full , some half dissected, some had only the organs that were exposed and some had the heart, kidney, stomach and all the other organs removed. I looked at all this with my eyes wide open which started watering soon.
Errrrr….. I wasn’t crying. It was the formalin that did this job. Every table had a skeleton which was hanging with the help of a hook. After 1 hour I tried to turn around and look at all my friends. They were in the same state as I was in but I kept control. The first day I hardly spoke except for answering a few questions asked by my table teacher. We had to study the bones of the human body first and familiarize with the anatomical terms. We finished the DH and I went to wash my hand. I think I washed my hands 5 times with dettol that day before having food. I quietly had food that day. My friends kept pestering me to share my experience about the lab but I controlled till I was done with lunch. It was then I realized that it wasn’t that difficult to feel normal even after facing some which could be as horrifying as a horror movie.
Week after week the same thing continued and after a month I was so used all this that I there was nothing that could make me feel horrible. I learnt to behave professionally and after this I had one dialogue to tell my friends, “Horror movies???? Is there something more horrifying than watching your own body look alike being dissected??”
Anatomy was so difficult to be handled but once we got a grip of it we could manage but it was very volatile so we devised new methods and pneumonic to learn the terms. The classes were also fun as we as extremely boring. I either slept during anatomy class or even if I had written something I couldn’t get everything registered during the class. The professors tried hard to explain very well and it did help to an extent.
Next comes, Physiology which was even more screwing. The whole department kept us on our toes the whole year and we learnt to be punctual and disciplined only because of the physiology department. I was not allowed to attend 2 classes for coming ‘a second’ later than the professor. Then I started setting my watch to the time that physiology department followed exactly according to the IST. A bell rings here everyday at 8am and 2pm just to remind everyone about the exact time. Facing viva in physiology practical meant we had to start studying one month before and if we didn’t do that we had to face an embarrassing situation in front of the professors who very sweetly made us feel illiterate.
Bio- Chemistry labs as well as classes were always fun but if we took a chance with the subject we were bound to suffer at the end. To cut the long story short in KMC, Manipal we couldn’t take a chance with anything. We all had just one aim that time was to clear first year with a decent score.
Amidst all this we all grooved into the Manipal atmosphere by hitting the discs once in a while, attending programs, watching movies, trying out new places to eat as and when we got time. After all this it was the time when it was the season of cultural activities in Manipal. It began with our practice sessions for Spandana. It is the fest organized by the M.Sc students and it was something to look forward to. Everyone was roped in to one or the other program. Next in line was Utsav which is a Manipal inter-college fest and it was followed by Flava - The food festival.
By the beginning of May the exam tension started building up. We had done with all the internal exams by then. One month of study holidays to finish the entire one year syllabus with the exams being held continuously for three days. To spoil our determination the monsoons set in Manipal in the month of June and July. The weather was so conducive to sleep that we had to fight with our sleep in order to study. If it started raining here it wouldn’t stop or else it would rain suddenly. It just seemed as if someone was emptying buckets full of water and when the water got depleted in the buckets it stopped raining. The rains were so unpredictable that we couldn’t move out of the house without an umbrella. I think apart from the attires and dressing style what Manipal students flaunt about is the kind of umbrella each one possessed. The kind of umbrella one uses here adds on to the style statement.
This phase was also over along with those 3 days of exam. It seemed as only 3 subjects but those days were horrible. Answering exams and waiting for the results was the most horrifying experience I have had so far in the past one year. I wasn’t this tensed even during my board exam in fact, any exam that I have answered so far. The moment results came it was as if one year of that hard work had been paid and it was so wonderful to have ‘PASSED’ first year with decent marks and get into the departments of our choice for which each one was there in KMC for their post graduation.