February was always a month of excitement and trepidation. For the end of February signifies the commencement of the new University year, where I would take two different planes for an arduous twelve hours journey to Melbourne from my hometown.
For the three years before last, the month was spent frantically buying new clothing and stationeries, as well as saying goodbyes to friends and family.
Melbourne always received me with warmth, the simmering heat not unlike those in my hometown. I always went to Uni the day after I touched down at Tullamarine.
It was indeed the feeling of returning to a second home when I spotted the huge familiar blue signboard proudly announcing the faculty. I had seen it grow and its name changed, and took photos with it every year.
Then and now (the first picture taken in 2005, the second 2008). Compare the size of the signboard!
It was always pleasant to go through the whole campus on my first day back, smelling the colorful flowers at the foyer just outside the Sissons building; casting an incredulous look at the dry unkempt looking grass at the sidewalk (why on earth it’s still there!!); prancing through corridors peppered with colourful notice boards; scrambling up the flight of stairs to the lecture theatres. There were always small surprises. During my second year, snakes and fishes appeared in the cafeteria. During my third, the library shifted to a small alcove and the lecture theatres got a makeover. During my fourth, Sigma Room became a virtual pharmacy, and we got a fourth building!
This colourful flower bed used to be in front of the Sissons building.
Then in the lecture theatre, there would be the reacquainting part, hearing friends taking about their holidays, spotting those who had new haircuts or wardrobe makeovers. Without fail, there will always be at least one new pharmacy couple. When the lecturer entered, I would be trying my hardest to concentrate in lectures, trying to make my long dormant brain to work again, hoping to extend the duration I adhere to my new year resolutions by one more day. Later we will spill out to the cafeteria, where we congregate at the round table exchanging gossips and checking out the newbies.
The lecture theatre after refurbishment.
But unfortunately, this year, there’s no more going back to look forward to. For time had caught up with me and I had graduated. This February, I sit wistfully at home, half a world away, looking with envy as friends in Facebook heralded the oncoming University year.
Oh, how I wish I can re-live it all over again! Now what were left are a few photos, but alas, even though they tell a thousand words each, they can’t capture the whole essence of my University experience. They were nothing, but fragments of memories.
And to all my friends, enjoy your new year in Parkville! Hope the new year will be good fun and a source of good memories that will accompany you throughout your life.