Entering the classroom of 2ndEJP, you are a greeted by a variety of faces. Some tired with Netflix written big on their forehead while some have the drained bus journey(s) visible on their face. You would only notice this person if you walk in early, with a smile on his face droops in Noel with his bag in one hand and a phone in other.
A silent guy who usually sits at the corner, Noel is seen vividly listening to classes else he would sneakily check on the cricket scores in any of the sites. An interesting character, he always takes his time in establishing his points slowly yet meticulously. If a familiar mallu friend is around, he would switch to Malayalam and conveys his thoughts.
When he knew that my profile assignment would be written on him, Noel was surprised but not shocked. “Many have approached me for profiling, it feels different.” Walking around college, both of us struck a conversation covering from “Why people shouldn’t consider him a naïve guy” to the reason behind his silent character.
He was particular on not getting his conversations recorded but did give an assurance that the things he said wouldn’t be complex. A Bangalore-based Malayali, Noel’s easiness in handling new languages is due to him being a Kendriya Vidyalaya student. “I was a student for 10 years”. beams Noel when asked about his school days in KV. When asked about his PUC, uncertainness replaces the pride he had seconds ago. After a long pause he said “It wasn’t a great time at my PUC. I had to shift to another institution and I was called a lot of things by a lot of people. I suffered a nervous breakdown and just wanted to get out of there”. Sensing the awkwardness, Noel quickly breaks the silence by talking about Psychology. He believes that he would make a great counsellor and helping out people. He goes on to talk about how different people interest him, by this time the uncertainness vanishes and a smile is back on his face.
When the question behind his quiet, innocent character was thrown at him. He quickly shoots back I am not silent, I just take time in establishing my relationship with them. I was more outgoing few years back. Now I restrain myself. He adds on by saying “Now, if I say that I watch porn videos, would this innocent boy stereotype break? I am a normal guy too”. We moved on to talk on his hobbies. He lists listening to Bollywood music as a stressbuster, I listen to them and a proud bathroom dancer for these songs. “I slipped and yet continued dancing and kicked the bucket multiple times in process” and he started laughing.
Sipping on his Tropicana Mango, on our fourth round we spoke on his desire to visit and explore Caribbean islands. “There’s a lot of things associated with it. I am just curious on discovering it myself. He is thinking on settling down at New Zealand and when questioned why. He had two interesting replies- “Not much people around and if I do settle down there, I would be the first one in my family to visit Australia (continent)”.
Noel still keeps in touch with his friends from KV. “I manage to stay in touch with them. I haven’t had a person (in college) I can proudly call my best friend but then it takes time”. He ensures that the dreaded monster of mis-management of time pull him down. He diligently follows his timetable and keeps himself deadlines which are few days before the actual deadline.
If I had a chance to do something different in my past, I would have taken up cricket. Any opportunities around which ensures I play cricket. I would take it with both my hands. Noel’s tryst with cricket began due to cartoons. His parents introduced him to the game during the world cup of 2011 and quoting him, he was “clean-bowled”. A MS Dhoni fan, his loyality to him shifts during the months of April and May. He doesn’t use the popular slogan ‘ESCN or MSCN’ but believes RCB would raise the cup one day.
As we walk to our class, my compliments on Noel resembling Jim Sarbh (Acted in Neerja, Sanju) makes him happy.”I do look like Jim Sarbh, maybe a malayali version of him’ and breaks into a slow laugh until he comes across his friends who were pondering on something.