Well, hailing from India, since my childhood I have heard and read about the wars and bad relations with our neighbouring country Pakistan. This scarred history prevents us from starting a new chapter where both countries live in peace and help one another out. The feeling of brotherhood.
Well, TU Delft offers us students a chance to acquire one of the crucial management skills and that is interaction with different multinational students. In fact this is one of the reasons for the orientation project to help u settle down comfortably with other students from different backgrounds.
Now, whenever you look at some “Indian” looking people on the way, you always start wondering if they are Indian or Pakistanis, Sri Lankans, Bangladeshi’s etc. But after a period of time you stop thinking that. You become one. This feeling indeed get proven when I recently saw a poster on the TUD page by some students who called out others interested in a game of cricket.
Well, cricket to Indians is like the unofficial National sport. There was a time in the 90’s when the whole nation was into it. You could bond with total strangers over a radio commentary of the match. And cricket match against Pakistan was more important than dinner or work (Thanks to the war still being so fresh). Every kid of my era has played cricket at some point of his life or another. It is more like a religion back home.
Now that you get the picture, let us continue. So, the thought of playing cricket here was something so wonderful. And so we arrange to meet in the Sports Center (The snow still hadn’t cleared) and realize that the majority of the students playing are Pakistanis. Okay! Tense moment! But it’s Cricket!!! So my friend and I go to play. Turns out one of the players had his birthday on that day do got welcomed with some delicious cake.
Then it begins. The nagging, the fun, the comments added to the wonderful moment of playing cricket. No more religious or national difference but simple and pure bonding over a game of Cricket.
Later that week, there was a Pakistani Cultural Night hosted by the Pakistan Student Society. Great food, music and atmosphere. It surely makes you feel that all is not lost and that there is still hope when peace and oneness will become a reality :)
Btw, if you do get an opportunity to watch a India Pakistan match, do watch. There is nothing like it when both sides give their best :)