Travel Learning: How a solo trip to Pondicherry changed my life?

A story of a medical school student recounting pre-covid solo-travel he undertook to Pondicherry

My Story

Back in the fall of 2019, I had just finished my first year of MBBS and was fresh into the second year which is 3 semesters long. The first semester of the most grueling year in Med school was also known as the “honeymoon period” because you would often find time to pursue or develop your interests. Before I go any further, allow me to briefly introduce the author of this time-taking tea-time read (i.e, Myself).

I am Daiwik Tadikonda and I am a Third-year Medical student at RVM Medical College, Telangana, India. I was never under doubt about my career ambitions and I have always wanted to pursue medicine growing up and there was never any second thought about it once I completed my 10th and 12th grade.

Being a Med student, I am often swarmed with exams and assignments 9 times out of 10 and to say that I have had to sacrifice some of the things that I love like cricket, for instance, would be an understatement. When I was fresh into my college, one of the seniors with whom I have developed an amicable bond told me back then that it would be advisable to forget about my personal and social life for the next five years (minimum). Being the rebel I am, I did not pay heed to it because I did not want to believe it. Though I am an introvert by nature, for obvious reasons, there are things that I still want to pursue outside of an academic setting.

Spoiler alert: he was right and the realization hit me like a truck. It took me a while to come to terms with it, but then I started telling myself that it would always be a small sacrifice that was the prerequisite to achieving something much greater. Now, in no way am I saying that a balance cannot be maintained. A balance between your professional and personal life can always be maintained and if your current method of balancing out things works for you, well and good and I salute you, sir/ma’am. To cut it short, not everyone is alike and for some, balancing might not always work out....

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