Now that the Board exams are done, have you already started day-dreaming about your dream college in India’s top university? At the same time, are you apprehensive about moving to a new city altogether? Here’s a little something for all would-be outstation students wishing to be a part of the University of Delhi in the upcoming academic year- a survival recipe exclusively for outstation students, by an outstation student.
(Author’s note: ‘survival’ is just used for a dramatic effect; you’ll sail through college here!)
All about Delhi
First things first- Delhi is NOT the rape capital of India. It’s as safe and as unsafe as any other city in the country. There are people on the road that will help you; there are shopkeepers and auto-waalas who won’t rob you of your money, so clear your head of all these clichés about Delhi.
The plus points? Easy access to all landmarks across the vast city via the city’s lifeline- the Delhi Metro. Delhi-ites swear by the efficiency of Delhi’s metro system. Other than this, exceptional food joints with as much variety as you wish to have on your plate along with being a shopper’s paradise, an art-lover’s heaven and an observer’s utopia., just when you start thinking you’ve got to know it all, the city throws something majestic at you to ponder upon!
Essentials for an outstation kid
Find good accommodation
Finding good accommodation is one of the most essential aspects you need to focus on once you get into the college of your choice. Many colleges across DU don’t have adequate hostel seats and hence alternative accommodations such as flats and PG (Paying Guest) accommodations are popular. Confused about what to choose? Here’s something to make your life a little easier-
Hostel– While many colleges have inadequate hostel seats, it’s still considered the first choice for most outstation students. The safety of the accommodation and lesser rent in comparison to flats and PGs are the main benefits hostels have to offer.
With this, hostels do come with certain guidelines and regulations to comply with. These maybe in the form of curfew deadlines and leave regulations. Food is also an issue in certain cases since all of us spoiled, in-love-with-home-made-food kids might find it a little difficult to adjust to the hostel mess’ food. It is a myth though that hostels are all about regulations. The mid-night parties, studying and staying together, sharing food (the list goes on till where your wishes can take you) will bring you a lifetime of friendships and irreplaceable memories.
PG Accommodation– One of the fastest growing businesses in Delhi (it’s not IT!) is of the Paying Guest Accommodations. You will have hundreds of PGs to choose from as per your own preferences. PGs in Delhi come with both rigid and flexible curfew deadlines. The food issue one might face in hostels is a rarity in cases of PGs given that you have the option of demanding the food of your own choice.
However, higher rent, difficulty in adjustment with fellow PG-mates (yes, that’s a term!), curfew deadline issues and safety concerns at times are a few negatives tagging along.
Flats – As rosy as the thought of owning your own flat may sound, it’s a mammoth task. Unless you’re willing to bargain with the subzi-waalas and relying on the wishes of a maid to turn up and get you some food, flats is not a good idea.
But, you surely cannot ignore the benefits of having a house party or calling your friends over whenever you wish to. Your parents will certainly have a lesser control over your activities since there’s no deadline issue and they’re often cheaper than PG accommodations.
The only advice is to think thoroughly before choosing your accommodation and consider all pros, cons and worst case scenarios for all options. Ultimately, your comfort (and survival!) overrules all other factors.
Wish you could be home…
Homesickness is something every outstation kid feels at some point of time. We understand how close you are to home but always think of the time you were earnestly waiting to get out of your home and explore. Well, the independence a new city gives you is your perfect chance to live your dreams. While doing all your work yourself might seem to be a burden initially, it’ll eventually become something you’ll be thankful for and proud of.
There are ways to get over the feeling of homesickness, of course! Take an early morning walk, go on a shopping spree, explore historical places in and around the city with your new found friends- the more you try to get your mind off the thought of home, the more at-home you’ll feel!
Adjustment issues often crop up when you come across unfamiliar people. The key is to see this unfamiliarity as a part and parcel of growing up and becoming your own person. It’s also important to understand that every kid in your hostel/PG is in the same boat as you are, and is facing similar issues.
The best part about Delhi is the fact that you will never run out of ‘things to do’. With its historical and cultural importance, the city in itself has a lot to offer. You might feel a little lost initially but embrace the change with open arms. Within no time, you’d be a part of this cross-cultural hub making a mark of your own. (Too much philosophy? Well, you’re getting the first hand experience of an outstation kid!)
Feature Image Credits: thedisneyden.com