My mid-semester exams are going on now. 5 exams in 5 days. Having given Algebra (Galois Theory), Graph Theory and (General) Topology exams in the first 3 days, I thought I would get some rest yesterday. But that was before I saw last year’s Statistics question paper. Thankfully, tonight I can rest easy. Tomorrow’s exam is Computer Science. That too, only on Octave/MATLAB.

I think the exams in my college are way way different than in other colleges. To prevent cheating, our question papers and answer scripts (!) are colored. Five colors in five days: pink, yellow (extremely bright), whitish green, sky blue and white (Thank God!). One of my classmates, S requested our Dean, Prof. Archimedes, not to give use the yellow shade because it literally hurts to look at it constantly for 3 hours. Prof. Archimedes is now sure that S used to cheat in exams and is now unable to do so because of the colors. We, on the other hand, are sure that Prof. Archimedes loves to play with colorful stuff like all other kids.

There is a small auditorium in our department in the college. That is the venue for our exams. There are 4 wall fans in 4 corners, which make such a lot of noise that they are practically useless. There are six (!) air-conditioners. Usually when I enter the exam hall 5 minutes before an exam, I see all three AC’s on my opposite side have temperatures of 18-20 degrees. Among the three on my side, two are usually on about 25 degrees while the one directly above my head is usually at 30+ degrees. God knows who does this and why.

On Monday, the exam had started when I realized the lights were all switched off. Apparently, Prof. Young, one of the invigilators was also aware of this but he just couldn’t find the switches. I sometimes wonder how most of the people in my colleges are geniuses in their fields but in daily life….

Having said all that, it’s funny when there’s a tree outside the window and sometimes monkeys can be seen in the tree. It’s extremely helpful when I can’t make head or tail of the question paper but I don’t want to leave the hall too early.


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