Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Dust to Dust

They're scraping the old paint off the hostel walls today. I was here when they were painted the last time, transformed from dreary blue to shocking pink. We were outraged then, pink for a girls hostel was such an annoying stereotype. That pink faded from shocking to mildly surprising and then to inoffensively pale. The walls are now a rather depressing pinkish-white, pockmarked with holes and covered with the scrawls of students over the years- timid vandals seeking to leave their mark here in some small way.

I left my mark too: my name scrawled in pencil in painstakinly miniature cursive, next to my door. It's an obsession for me, doodling my name. I scrawl it everywhere, on the backs of notebooks, in pools of sauce on plates and this once, on a hidden corner of the wall. K used to tell me that I must have an identity crisis. He said it half-jokingly but he might just be right.

The labourers scraped my name away along with all the others. All our small rebellions. Now they are a fine layer of powdery pink dust all over the floor, flying up in clouds and marking our footsteps as we walk past. By night, it will all be swept away.