An irritating alarm clock goes off. Made in India. Ringing in the bright sunny morning of America. But I do not want to get up. Every night, I convince my self that tomorrow I am going to get up early. Yes, tomorrow will be different, I will keep up the strong will power and get up from the bed early. Same self-talk every night. Same result every morning. The alarm goes off and I say to myself, okey old boy, you will get just 5 more minutes and then you have to get up. Those five minutes transform into 50 minutes atleast and I wake up at around 8 or 8.30 without breaking the schedule!
Time to 'skype' ! Thanks to Skype, I talk to my parents in India everyday two times. Morning and evening. Free of cost! God bless Skype. I have used it so much that I am really thinking what philanthropic soul had the idea of founding this company and deciding to give free calling service. Hope their sanity will remain intact and they will continue this service.
The sleep has still not evacuated my brain cells and it still influences me. Like a hangover! So my parents can figure out everyday that I am still sleepy! But anyway, so the talk lasts for an hour almost. Then it is breakfast time! A desi student's exclusive breakfast. Cereals and milk. We generally keep half a dozen packs of cereals as it is our daily routine to eat it.
Then the rush to finish today's homework begins. Only a couple of hours to go before the class begins and still one report to write for the class. So I frantically go through the paper, note down points, half dozing half alert, somehow I manage to write the report well.
I have started becoming sloppy in timing! So initially here, I would be ready to leave my place atleast 30-40 minutes before class. But now I have become more calculative, and bolder. Because I know it takes 20 minutes for me to walk to the department, I will exactly start 20 minutes before. Sometimes even late! And in all this process, the lunch gets sacrificed many times. But I have become more regular in this matter since last few days. So what I do is I make some instant ready to eat which I would have brought from India Store here. I have quick lunch and then go the deartment. I find this way much better.
Then comes class time! Sometimes interesting, sometimes boring. Sometimes literally soporific. No offence meant to any of the professors. But can't help it. Prof. Hartman, the UC Berkley guy of Operating Systems is too funny in the class. His sense of humour keeps the class alive! The talks in his class are really interesting. After the classes, I head straight to library.
Library has become almost my second home. But that is the place where I like to spend most of my time. Reading or working on class projects. The environment within the library is really nice and conducive. A large bar of Hershey chocolate (http://www.hersheys.com/) and a grand sized coffee mug are my usual companions there. Storehouse of calories. Do I care? I anyway need a lot of energy and calory to keep myself going. It is interesting to see some people daily coming to library like me. There are two old gentlemen almost staying in the library the whole day reading some books. They see me, I see them. Daily routine!
The whole evening is spent at this place with nothing better to be done! Anyway I prefer spending time alone working or reading! I take the last Teal back home. Oh, by the way, the Teal means the University's bus service. They have different color coding for different routes. Purple, Teal, Orange and so on. So I come home, have a cup of hot 'desi' tea which I get from India regularly! Then time to call or chat again with friends in India and second round of talk with my parents.
Dinner time is as erratic as our Indian cricket team's performance. It is sometimes at 9, 10, 11 or sometimes even goes to 12 o'clock in the night. Cooking is one of the activities I hate from the bottom of my heart. I wonder how people can cook with such enthusiasm as one of my neighbours does. I hardly like what I cook. Not that I am so bad a cook. But somehow my tastebuds always reject the food that I cook.
Then the night study sessions start. I used to go to the department at night for working on project. But lately, I have been staying home at night, working on my pathetic 800x600 resolution screen of Fedora Linux. I have grown used to it now I realize! If you are constantly given bad things, you get so used to them because of repeatation that you don't feel bad anymore and you become comfortable with it. The session continues till 2-2.30 at night generally and then I drop my self dead on the bed, ofcourse with that self-talk of deciding to get up early the next day, knowing it would be of no use!
Sometimes I wonder, what is it that makes the life so monotonous? Is it the heavy course work load of Computer Science department? Or is it just me, shutting off myself from the outside world where people enjoy and have fun? I hope I will find the answer someday. One semester has passed and I hope I find it before this life as a graduate student is over!
Image: Main Library Building - University of Arizona