Tomorrow I’ll be flying off to Kent,so today somehow marks the end of my gap year which began in September 2013,when I was supposed to head to university like the others of my age.
I think that,no matter what happens in the future,this gap year will forever be the most important part of my life.For it was in its midst that I set up this blog to which I surprisingly find myself attached.What began as a project has eventually become my own space where I can write whatever I want.The blog also saw a striking improvement in my writing and appreciation of books.At school,I studied English as any other subject and was never encouraged to take liberties with it.Here I can experiment with different structures and syntaxes without having to worry about grades.Likewise I read introductions of books and other book-related articles only because I like to,not because I have to.In this light,this blog has really helped me to come out of my shell.
I’ve also come across some awesome people from countries I have only seen on miniature globes: Finland,England (although I’ve been there once),Czech Republic,and India among many others.Each person I’ve met have his/her own peculiarities and gave me a glimpse of how life is abroad.In the process they’ve rekindled my desire to leave my country which is ages behind,both in terms of mentality and infrastructures.Most importantly these individuals showed me that the world is not as hopeless as it seems.Living in a country where most people don’t know who Roal Dahl,Dostoevsky and Tolstoy are,I thought it was rare to stumble upon people with a high reading culture,but was obviously mistaken.It took some time before I found these bloggers,but,once I did,I learned a fair deal from them.
The gap year was also the one when I fell in love again with literature.There are simply too many incredible books that I’ve read to list,as each is as unforgettable as the other.Such books have also changed my outlook on life; To Kill a Mockingbird has made me more empathic than ever while Kafka’s spite for bureaucracy seems to have rubbed off on me.I will also not forget the teachings of Milan Kundera in The Unbearable Lightness of Being – ”Kitsch is the denial of shit in our life.” – or the idea that ”life is a carpet” from Of Human Bondage.I was very fortunate to discover the Folio Society,of which I’m now a member.Besides giving classics the treatment they deserve,they have introduced me to a myriad of classics and authors very often overlooked.For an art-enthusiast like me their books are an absolute delight to read,and I now own about 40 Folio books sitting on my shelves.
And how can I not mention Anna Karenina and Breaking Bad,arguably the best book of all time and the best TV show ever respectively? Reading Tolstoy’s book was a blissful experience.Each page was absolute perfection and reading it fed my aesthetic soul.Breaking Bad,so to say,is the Anna Karenina of TV.Everything was done to perfection; the actors couldn’t be better,the scenes were wonderfully shot and the writing was always ingenuous.In Walter White I saw somebody who built an ’empire’ – you’d understand the reference if you watched it – out of sheer passion and determination,and in that respect,is truly an inspiring individual.I have no qualms about saying that reading Anna Karenina and watching Breaking Bad are among the very best moments of my life.Borges is another fascinating person whose stories repeatedly blew my mind off.He showed me how to see,think and even imagine differently.
On the eve of my departure I am exactly like I planned one year ago – my lack of maturity and indecisiveness were among the many factors which prompted me to skip a year.To make the best of my university days I reckoned that I should be not only an accomplished student ready to study relentlessly,but rather an individual with the right outlook on life and values who knows exactly what to do and where to go.As I take a step towards a new phase of my life,I hope I was right to take a gap year.