Student Experience Blog

The Green Mile(s) and the Yellow Brick Road.

No fear, ladies and gentlemen! Like a glorious phoenix, I have arisen from the fiery pit of mid-terms more or less unharmed. I still tend to flinch at loud noises and impending deadlines, but the doctors assure me that that will eventually pass. Maybe.

While, yes, college students are an entirely different species than the rest of the population, we still have yet to conquer the last great enemy, the Achilles' heel of any frantically studying student: sleep. We may be able to go on only the barest amount of sleep for days at a time, but eventually it will catch up to us. So, the first thing I did on my week-long break was sleep. So much. So very, very much. I call it a mid-term induced coma (copyright pending).

Nothing cures an M-TIC quite like a trip to your favorite capital and mine, Boise. After my poor brain had been pushed harder than Seabiscuit during a big race (or War Horse during any part of War Horse, whichever equine metaphor you prefer) the last few weeks, I was itching to stretch some other muscles.

I hopped on my bike for a journey on the Boise Greenbelt. No essays, no tests, no #2 pencils, and no grades. Just me, the open road, and my trusty steed, AKA A Streetbike Named Desire.

My favorite part about Boise is the fact that the locals should be insanely protective of the gold mine they’re living in, but instead, they are the friendliest people who want nothing more than for visitors to enjoy their town as much as they do.

Idaho is a veritable melting pot of landscapes and Boise is the heart of it. Riding along the Greenbelt, especially this time of year, feels like pedaling through the pages of a sensible scenic calendar you’d see at a dentist’s office; some parts are still enjoying summer, down the road it’s autumn, and then you’re in a Death Valley-esque tumbleweed patch, before finally stopping in a confusing place where it looks like spring but feels like winter and smells like pie but there is no pie.

No trip to Boise, for me, is complete without a stop at Pie Hole. For those of you who aren’t familiar, Pie Hole is the greatest pizza place this side of the heaven’s pearly gates. It’s a place where the environment is almost as good as the food. Why eat on tables when instead you can eat on redesigned, working arcade games? Why have painted, boring walls when you can have a 20-foot mural of a dragon battle? That’s Pie Hole for you, all fun and dragon battles (and amazing pizza). So after my legs began to lose feeling (Kristin Armstrong I most certainly am not) I was there.

Finally, as the sun began to set over the Boise hills, I packed my bags and clicked my red heels together three times in order to get home.

Ah, home. There is no place like it.

Since starting college, I’ve learned to appreciate home more. Home is my family, and my old friends, and my very own bathroom. Home is where you eat way too much food and your laundry is done automatically by magical fairies (Unverified. But seriously, I don’t do it, but yet there it is, folded neatly on my bed. Explain that, Mythbusters!)

College sometimes does feel like the wonderful world of Oz. Occasionally, you may feel lost and uncertain you’re going the right direction (after all, how much are you going to trust a woman who just FLOATED IN ON A PINK BUBBLE?). The journey may be rough, but if you use your brain, trust your heart, and have a little courage?

Well, readers, you’re going to turn out just fine. 

-Ashley A. Miller

Ashley is a sophomore Creative Writing major from Payette, Idaho.