The desert has its ship, the camel. Campus also has its ship, the relationship. If you think about it, it is indeed a literal ship which students wait to catch and feel safe and accepted behind the university gates.

Someone once said if you want to get laid, go to college. If you want an education, go to the library. This may be a bit of an exaggeration but truth be told, a lot of students here have it as a goal, to emerge with a spouse in addition to the obvious degree. As a third year, I have seen a lot of relationships made and broken. Sometimes, they do not even warrant the descriptive term relationship. Some are just flings or assumed situations where one party does not even know they are in one.

One way relationships hit off in campus is the rush at the beginning of academic years. Seniors are always eager to land the hottest freshman who will carry them through the year. No one stops to think that maybe this freshman was hitched way before she appeared in campus.

Hanging around places students visit a lot, like the library or student’s clubs and joints will also provide an environment for the same. Clearly, even the library is not that safe. And recently, there are social networks, Twitter, Facebook and 2go. This is where the gold is for the shy ones.

Students are different and thus the reasons for the relationships are as varied. A finalist may feel they need to secure a partner before it is too late. Apparently, it is harder to find a life partner out there. A freshman may feel that they need to be in one to experience campus to the full. No one wants to be alone anyway. “I need to feel man enough, one who can provide for a lady and have my sexual needs fulfilled in the process,” a comrade asserts confidently.

Let’s not forget that most undergraduates solely rely on parents, guardians or the Higher Education Loans Board to finance their stay in campus. Yet someone is busy trying to provide for a fellow student. Now this sounds completely preposterous. But they call it love.

Even more intriguing is when they can afford to have another girlfriend either within campus or at home. The drama when the other woman is discovered is always an entertaining scene to watch or eavesdrop on over the thin walls that separate hostel rooms.

At the risk of sounding narcissistic, sometimes you need to love yourself before you love others. Establish your identity before you run around trying to be identified with a girlfriend or boyfriend. The size of university beds is enough to tell you that they are not meant for two people, unless the two are seriously emaciated.

In university, there are two factions of students. Those who advocate for socializing as opposed to specializing too early, most who are self-professed Christians who believe that relationships are sacred and should be treated that way, while the other faction believes that experience is key to an eventual marriage thus a relationship is some sort of training ground. That is why the concept of ‘exile’ is quite pronounced within campus grounds.

In this 21st century, even the same sex relationships are making an appearance in universities. It is still kept a bit under wraps but once in a while you will see two men holding hands or a girl who resembles a man in every sense of the word apart from the conspicuous bumps on her chest, kissing another girl.

It is an innate behaviour to seek to board this ship of relations. Especially in such a conducive environment that provides the calmest of waters for it to sail unperturbed. Whether the ship reaches the other side or sinks is entirely up to the two passengers.

PS: This was an assignment by my lecturer and I just felt it would suit my blog too, however boring. Yet to be handed in so if you are my classmate, thou shalt not plagiarize! 

Written by Shiku Ngigi

Mum and dad’s daughter. Shouting big sister. Learning to listen. Jesus freak. Recovering tomboy. Mouse potato. Bass addict. Waking up the writer in her.

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