“Where is the exit?“
“Take a left, then right…….another right and there you are.” I showed you the way for now but I can read that anxious concern in your eyes…..I hope I don’t get lost here.
A slice of pizza in hand and a glass of cold water, as I stood in the Great Hall back again at my home, I saw you my friend. Standing in the long queues for checking in or catching an elevator to your floor with streaks of tiredness dripping down your face, while you glowed beautiful in your colorful attire bogged by your bags, I noticed the mixture of excitement and apprehension in you for what lies ahead.
Well then, gear up for an amazing and wonderful journey.
“Where do I start?” Aha! take a leaf from Joël’s book and go to a retreat for the 5 wonderful reasons my friend Gabby explains. Spend time while eating to talk to a new person everyday. Play a game never played before, grab a drink you’ve never tasted before or dance away the evening to tunes you’ve never heard before with a fellow resident from a country you’ve never been before.
“Oh! I’ve such a busy schedule. I won’t have time for all that.” Why don’t you just say hello to a new resident you come across everyday as you walk out for a break or to the campus. Best friendships can even happen chatting with the faceless voice in the shower right next to you.
“I am very shy to begin conversations.”
Hi, my name is Vishwa and I am a continuing resident in room P30. A graduate student in the Systems Engineering program, I work with electric vehicles. Hailing from India, I love adventure sports, travelling and thoroughly enjoy music as a singer, percussionist or simply a listener.
There you go! I started the conversation for you. Come have a chat. You know my room now.
In the words of Charles Dickens, “A very little key will open a heavy door.” You may not have the resources to travel the world but the whole world has come to you right outside your door. You just need to step out.
In short –
Anxious be not, for the exit gates,
Take a breath, look around, knock a new door.
Your clock is ticking as a world awaits,
Nurture your curiosity, Get! Set! Explore …
For Retreat info and photos, visit: http://ihouse.berkeley.edu/residents/retreats.php