An (Optimistic) Open Letter to 2017

Dear 2017,

It feels like just yesterday when you begun. It was, in fact, 364 yesterdays ago. Strange how despite those few lectures that seemed to never end, you went by so fast. We took a while to get used to you. Often, we all wanted 2016 to come back and take your place. We wanted to mend some things from our pasts, and go back to the comfort of it. However, you were relentless.

You can’t be given just one label because there are around 7.2 billion people on the planet and each one of us has a different opinion about you.

For the World, 2017 was an almost well balanced seesaw with a lot of progress on one side, and Donald Trump on the other. With all seriousness though, with empowerment of women, fast-spreading awareness about mental illnesses, progress of the LGBTQ+ community, and other wins on one hand, and too many painful losses on the other, you’ve definitely taken us on a ride. Oh, and bitcoin’s sudden rise to fame? What a twist!

For India too, you have been a great year packed with exciting events ranging from Manushi Chillar winning the title of Miss World to the implementation of the right to privacy, not to forget the marriage of Virat-Anushka that grabbed massive attention from all over the country.

Zooming in further, Maharashtra has seen its share of ups and downs. A cyclone scared us, a few rain storms brought back bad memories but looking back at the year, we’re all incredibly proud. One of the Maharashtrian villages is now 20,000 students closer to its goal of being declared as the first English literate village while another now has access to electricity and a public bus service. It’s hard to be mad at you, 2017.

A little closer up, Mumbai managed to survive well, even with the Elphinstone stampede and the heavy rains that tried to paralyse it. The spirit of Mumbaikars is something that never ceases.

And as we get even closer to the face of the Earth, we reach Somaiya. A very, very small part of the 510.1 million square kilometres of Earth’s surface. Although, for all of us here, it makes up most of our world. You’ve been very kind to us. A lot of new members added to the family. Abhiyantriki 2017, Skream 2017 and Symphony 2017, three fantastic, very successful festivals. Our college was also paid a visit by the 14th Dalai Lama himself! There have been many infrastructure developments like a new hostel, and statues to honor our founders. We’ve tried to do our bit for society with beach clean-ups organised by Parvaah, which gained the support of Devendra Fadnavis, Aditya Thackeray and Amitabh Bachchan! I think it’s safe to say Somaiya liked you.

You’re ending and there’s a lot of new things on the horizon for us. We can’t say we’ll see you later, since some goodbyes are forever, but we can assure you that we’ll reminisce you once in a while, trying to connect with you through our memories. Those of us you were good to, hope 2018 is even better. So for those of us whom you’ve beaten up and left exhausted, in Rocky Balboa’s words we say, ‘The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it.’, and stand back up again.

So Goodbye, 2017.

We will definitely miss you.

If not you, then all the little things that you have done for us, making us who we are today, slightly different than who we were before you came.

Cheers to you and your eventful journey!

Thanking you.

Yours truly,

All of us at Somaiya

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