I may not be agreed if I say this room belongs to me for neither this hostel nor this country is mine but it can’t be still right to let say it belongs to any other than me as far as I stay in it for the legal payment of the rent owe me this room – till the end of my stay here.

I have known this four-walled confinement for almost a couple of years ( for half the first semester I stayed in another room with same features except due to its location , it faces the darkness of hell – be it night or day – when the electrical power is gone).  If the back door is opened, I come across the length of the highway, which is little away from the dormitory. And through the same opening, enough daylight enters to flood the space inside.

I prefer the door open throughout the day: it keeps me awake when I am in my room – by playing truants from classes or during weekends – witnessing metaphors of the busy world plying on the road.
The balcony is fully secured by protective wire mesh. From here, the view – though not panoramic – is quite enthralling. In hot summer afternoons, it would be an interesting game to be here. The playful spirit that I knew as being an untamed urchin in old times would posses me and I would be finding myself falling to the temptation – blowing whistles to pretty passersby. When some of them shy away, the game would look even more encouraging and inviting. However, after the incident of Delhi, I totally put stop to this. Otherwise – I warned myself – I would be behind the bars for the harassment and molestation of the opposite gender.

The room is slightly rectangular. Its breath measures seven tiles and length exactly nine tiles.  A tile of the floor is a square of two feet accurately. The height of the room still remains unexplored. But the fan hangs from a safe distance. So, it might be at least three meters.

The white lime paintings on the walls are peeling off. Only recently, minding the coming investigations by university evaluators called NAC (National Assessment Committee) perhaps, all the buildings were renewed of its paintings. However, those paintings – as if they had also been holding tenaciously to the walls till those invigilators are gone – started showing ugly wrinkles few weeks after the NAC officials left. It revealed its original quality – the cheap paints, peeling off the walls, formed tattoos on the parts vacated by them.

The concrete holes on the wall head-straight – or foot-straight if I sleep heading towards the washroom – is quite enough to be called as book shelves. They need refinement as constant drawing and replacing there had already worn out some of my course text books. I managed to protect the valuables by covering the base over by patterned and coloured papers. One of the two shelves, I converted to altar; pasted two pictures of Buddha – a laminated serene Buddha and another peaceful one in which the enlightened one is in deep meditation, halo glowing around his head.

Though not deficient the room is neither fully sufficient of the provided needs. The poor lighting system is in dire need of replacement. Broken sockets are in desperate conditions. Tube-lights would refuse to glow sometimes; or is it that they demand (like the workers here) the freedom of working on their own; or they simply don’t like to be controlled by the switches.

Whatsoever, if only I am able to maintain my room clean literally, I am content. Clean and neat are abode of god. Didn’t somebody say cleanliness is next to godliness? And beautiful too!

Recently, a neighbour friend was bold enough to cut few empty, polythene water containers of the hostel and recycle it to horticultural pots. His verandah looked better with those vegetable pots. I frequently mistake those potted plants for ornamental flowers. But “the mistaking” is what makes his place nicer. Perhaps I should also implement his idea. In the room of my own, I still have some space – on the balcony – for a minute fraction of the paradise. 

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