We’re old. My batch in the Girls Block, I mean. It isn’t just ‘coz of being in Final Year [there is no Fourth-Year B.Tech at NITK]. We’ve been “seeing things”. Doppelgangers everywhere. And I read something somewhere that said if everything and everyone you see reminds you of something or someone else, you’re OLD.
We have a whole new bunch of freshers here, with all three hostel blocks full to bursting for the first time in the history of NITK [The college decided to start postgrad MBA, MSc and Godaloneknowswhatelse courses here this year, and they all have a high population of women]. And everyone of them seems to look like someone else we’ve known in the past.
Like there’s this girl who happens to look very much like our Girl Rep[NITK version of Reservation for Women] of two years back, and another who gets mistaken for WebClub Convener [who this year happens to be a girl], while yet another has a side-profile similar to a petite third-year. There’s also one who looks like an artful senior of ours, but methinks it’s just the frames she wears, but I’m not too sure.
But atleast this year the seniors aren’t around to have themselves confused with others. Which isn’t quite the case with me. My lookalike was here last year, and still is, which doesn’t cause enough confusion to provide comic relief, but… well…
Like the first day I was back last year..
Someone: Heya, back yesterday, no?
Me: No, da.. just this morning.
Someone: No! I saw you yesterday, didn’t I…
Someone else: Hey, no da.. that’s her First-year twin.
Mom and me were trying to make my new room habitable for creatures other than worms and lizards, when I had to run out and get some insecticide. Ma peeked out of the room, and saw a retreating back, and called out my name. She thought I was just going off to say hi to my friends who were just back, and was going to start yelling for me when “me” turned out to be the pesky junior.
“Hey, you know what?” said a neighbor of mine. “There’s a girl in first year who looks juuust like you”.
I was moved to curiosity, and caught a glimpse of this mirror image of mine. “Naaah, not my twin”, I said. But… well… in case I had to commit a quick crime by moonlight…
Further comments on that front came after information about her city and branch turned out to be the same as mine.
“Maybe it’s the way you both dress”, said Nam. “Maybe it’s your hairstyle”.
“Maybe the way you both walk”… which on a good day is a great impression of a frenzied mosquito.
“Hey, y’know what, your names sound similar, too”
“Maybe the way both of you mix your English with Kannada”… hell, no… mine has a fair amount of Tamil in it too.
“Have you like, ever been to a big fair, like say, the Kumbh Mela or something?”
“That terrible song you keep humming… I heard her humming it too… maybe it’s your family song?” No… I don’t quite think While My Guitar Gently Weeps deserves to be called terrible, and George Harrison isn’t even remotely related to me.
But the icing on the cake was a dark evening when I was walking to the mess, and two girls suddenly turned and gave me a smile on hearing my footfalls, and then turned away again.
“Man,” I heard one of them say to the other as I passed, “I SO thought that was <name of my doppelganger>”.
Now if only I had a need for a dead ringer….