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By Franciss Nikole Elli | January 31, 2021

The white bubbles kiss your skin as the sand buries your feet. Your eyes travel to the farthest blues and somewhere, where your sight cannot reach, is a home that is calling you.

For almost a year, the heart aches at the sight of the orange blanket of leaves resting on the campus pavements. For the first time, you feel a pang of jealousy, wishing you stood at the same spot under the acacia trees, among the green benches, chatting with friends.

A year ago, the bliss of the campus’ breeze tingled your skin as you sat alone in one of Nining’s kiosks. You sat in silence with your favorite DSM combination and listened to the soft clink-and- clank of the spoons and glasses. The eggs crack in front of you and they sizzle as soon as they hit the hot aluminum pan.

The corridors of AH were busy with students in whites, reading thick handouts, memorizing terms, squeezing every possible bit of time just before an exam. Some sport their best pambahays as they prance the halls, unbothered as they greet their friends they last saw…yesterday.

Inside the campus, no one misses a beat yet everyone seems to belong in an organized chaos that begins with disagreements and ends with acceptance. No one bats an eye at how plain you dress or how extravagant you prepare yourself. It simply is a safe place to express yourself away from the judgement of others. Perhaps this is the secret of Silliman University.

Do you ever wonder how the annual Hibalag draws huge crowds of both students and alumni alike? Once students leave the white and red portals of Silliman, everyone wants to revisit a part of their treasured past. And every year when the ballfield lights up in glee or when the rain starts to pour, the university immerses everyone again in a unique culture of merrymaking and feast.

But the Silliman campus still writhes your heart in joy even on lonely Saturdays and Sundays. When only the uniformed guards meet you at the gate and the eerie toll of the bell greets you, the campus still holds the magic of freeing you from worries as you chase sunsets behind Silliman church.

You miss the campus. Surely, it misses you too.

Your home may not be the place your feet kisses right now. It may not be the four-walled room you are familiar with or the people you think you are closest to. Sometimes, home can be the place you once thought you will never love. Oftentimes, it is the warm embrace from someone you never thought you will learn to accept. One thing is for certain, that though far, it awaits your return within its portals while it stands still in time for you.


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