How many times do I have to tell you man? Manipal is in Karnataka! Not Sikkim, not Pune; just plain simple Manipal. How hard is it to google stuff like this in the 21st century? Manipal- tucked in the pocket of Karnataka along the Southern Coast of India. Small simple town but with people of hearts made of gold. Like its clear when you notice everyone calling each other “Anna” and “Akka” every single time. A place like Manipal can seriously bump up your outlook on life. For me personally it was overwhelming at start but each experience only added to the cream. So my first semester here at Manipal twisted me into a totally new me for 3 distinct reasons.
Nearly every first year noob in Manipal is head over heels with the place, ain’t it true? I was stoked by the look of my college, the MARENA, the beaches and what not. Should I even use the word ‘independence’ now? I mean lets face it, a lot here are just to have a roller coaster ride of fun, however for me that’s coupled with an enriched academic life. Hard to believe but hey, that’s the plan. I went out almost every third day with whoever came along, to the Manipal clichés – Snack shack, 7 Bees, Tasty Bites, Vada Pav and *ahem-ahem* spots. And how intensely soothing the walks are at Endpoint, freeing you from hostel-bustle and piling assignments. Malpe, Hoode, Delta beach ring just one phrase to us MU kids – lazy ass Sundays. New friends, new food, great experiences but sucky roommate(s) to balance out my life. Hard as I may try, first semester stories just don’t fit in a nutshell.
Everyone’s got a definition. Mine started to take this wild unexpected turn; gracias Manipal. I chose to walk down an old path from which I had run away . Music. What’s better than Carnatic music at MANIPAL in KARNATAKA. And just to amp things up even more, I chose the flute. Did you know that the flute, my friend, is believed to be the first known musical instrument known to man? Well now, I just don’t play it, I live it. It was only about a matter of time when it dawned on me that good music can’t get you just head banging all the time. Music is more than a guy with a guitar singing a random all-about-girl-song. Good music gets to not just your own conscience but connects to the hearts out there. It’s not just about feet tap, but get the soul to soothe. No offence to the gazillion guitarists, drummers, and hipsters in Manipal- the flute is just something else. Period. That’s also why I adore the Endpoint so much, it’s just me, my flute and the scenic high I get every other evening. Beaches and Manipal Lake follow on my list of favorite flute spots. That’s one reason I seem to love independence – I don’t ask mommy permission to just get out there and practice my heart out.
As I get closer to the end here, I should reiterate how deeply I had soaked Manipal into my veins. I was just as good as ‘Eat.Sleep.Flute.Repeat.’ But all fun and no pain makes jack a jackass. First semester for me ended on a bitter-sweet note. Sweet for I think I had found “the one” while on the flip side I ended up with a poor lil’ broken heart. Happy, simple & no bull shit turned to disillusionment and detachment. If there’s one rule I’d put out there to aspirant couples or simply just to guys – sometimes even when you know it’s a mistake you gotta’ make it anyway. Burn up that boundary and run for it like there’s no coming back. As for whats stocked in store for me, I’ll just have to wait and watch. Until then, Chill Maadi.
About the author: Ratish Mehrotra is a first year student at WGSHA, Manipal University. He’s a travel enthusiast, writer, flutist, and in general loves reading. At present he’s a part of The Campus Connect- Manipal.