I still remember the first day of college. From clothes to accessories to look, everything was brand new. Of course nowadays teenagers go for cosmetic treatments, spa splurges & can go up to any extent just to make that perfect first impression. But in my times, clothes & accessories were the main focus. Besides, when going for a course such as Hotel Management, one was upfront given directions about formal attire & professional behavior. But, college was college, and most of the gyaan was soon trashed the moment we were out of the induction session.
Just like hunters waiting for their catch, a swarm of seniors waited outside the auditorium for us fachchas. The moment session ended and the principal left, they jumped inside the auditorium, locked the doors and began to download the REAL guidelines that had to be followed for a month. I had expected the usual “sing a song, chawanni athhani kinda stuff”, but ragging in an HM college was a different ball game all together. I think all that deserves a separate dedicated post, so lemme move back to what happened in the auditorium that day.
We were given the usual dress code – mismatch salwar kurta, oiled hair with 2 braids, bindi and bathroom slippers. They even warned us that if some teacher asks, we had to say we had dressed up in a hurry & were just about to slip into the uniform for the practicals.
All our dreams of flaunting our look to our DU counterparts vanished in thin air. My friend Mona said, “wearing a salwar suit is OK, but no oil/braids for me, it will look so behanji type.” A senior quickly overheard, gave a wicked smile and said “Unfortunately you have joined HM. There is lot of oil in the kitchen where we fry fish during our food production practicals. I poured the entire oil over a fresher's hair last year & won’t mind repeating the ritual with you.”
Next day, poor Mona and I, boarded the bus, embarrassed as our DU friends were dressed up to kill. There was no escape. 2 seniors also took the same bus & utilized the opportunity to grill us throughout the journey. By the way, they used to call it “personality development program.” I hated the 2 braids & oil. Not that it gave me the behanji look (it actually made me look very cute, as per my encouraging mom). The braids looked very shabby. That was when I realized I had been a victim of split ends. But I had no option than to don those braids. It was better than smelling of fish & becoming the laughing stock of college. We reached college & stuck to groups of the same species to avoid being caught by seniors.
Just as we came out of the last lecture, we were caught by a famously cruel senior, Miss Singh. Although I later discovered she was gem of a person, during ragging we dreaded being caught by her. Coz she was famous for giving the worst punishments & the fish oil incident was also credited to her. Like a goat, we made the most innocent face ever & answered whatever she asked. One look at me and she said, “hello madam, u haven’t joined a normal college. You can’t even manage a neat braid, how will you manage in hospitality?” Now this was embarrassing, especially because I was with my group of friends at that time. Miss Singh left but my split ends had been highlighted! The Miss Chic in my group gave me “a” look & suggested an expensive salon. Some others suggested tips on diet etc. But, hey, it was embarrassing me even more. I wished for a magic lamp so that I could get rid of them immediately.
The moment I entered home, big tears rolled down my eyes & I was after mom’s life to get me a haircut, else I wouldn’t go to college….
That was years ago...
That was years ago...
And today, when I received my pack of “Dove split end rescue” shampoo & conditioner, I immediately said, “why didn't you come to my rescue that day when I faced so much embarrassment due to these split ends?” But thank God, Dove thought about this problem and came up with a solution. Have been totally in love with the shampoo and conditioner, the sheen, fragrance & the assurance of Dove damage solutions. The fiber actives in the shampoo make my hair much softer after the shower and I am desperately waiting for the split ends to vanish, so that I can once again fulfill my dreams of having beautiful, long hair.
I can never forget that day in college but I am glad my niece won’t have to face all that on her first day to college. She has the power of fiber actives in Dove by her side.
As for me, I know miracles don’t happen overnight, but persistent efforts & belief does work.
This post has been exclusively written for “Beautiful Ends to your Beautiful Braids” contest by Dove, in association with Indiblogger.