With the first week down and classes in full swing, I could feel the pressure starting pile up on me. I have learnt to deal with stress quite well during my time here, and one of the best ways to deal with stress is to simply get away. I was lucky enough to have a weekend off soccer just when the Outdoor Program decided to hold a backpacking trip to Stanley, Idaho. Having never seen the Sawtooths, I signed up straight away. We left Friday night after class and backpacked until Sunday morning.
While I was still a senior in high school comparing various colleges and what they had to offer, one of the lowest priorities on my list was finding a campus with a thriving Greek Life. I never saw myself joining a fraternity, ever. I identified more with Lewis and Gilbert from Revenge of the Nerds than I did with Bluto and Otter in National Lampoon's Animal House, two films which colored my expectations of Greeks before I ever actually met one. That sort of fraternity life was hardly a good reason to look into an institution of higher education.
On Saturday night, after morning of racing against my teammates and alumni, and eating lunch at Imelda’s, which was good enough to rival even the food in the caf (which is saying a lot, I absolutely LOVE the food here!), I found myself eating dinner with the lovely people of Hayman Third North. Someone suggested going to Boise for the evening, and checking out the Street Fair ... I mean, the “hippie fair.”
On Wednesday night, I got to meet the latest crop of Heritage Scholars. All the freshmen and some of the upperclassmen gathered in Blatchley, divided into teams, and set off on a photo scavenger hunt across campus with the goal of getting as many photo items as possible while getting to know our group. I was on a team with two freshmen, Colton and Demir, and a Russell, a junior.
Unpacking and getting class-ready have consumed my first week on campus, and after my first couple days of classes, I feel like I'm already back in the college routine. It seriously feels like I never left for the summer! It has been sooooo nice to catch up with friends on campus, and it is great to see new faces on campus too. Here is a brief synopsis of my week back in Caldwell...
I generally despise blogs that take the form of lists. I think they are way too easy and do not pressure the writer to come up with a nice narrative/argument. But they have their advantages. For atarters, they are easy to read. Why do you think Cracked.com gets so many hits? Also, they are easy to write. And fast. And because I have to head out and actually work, I will just make a list, to tell you of the length and the breadth of my activities since my last blog post.
My time at The College has given me a lot of things. It's fostered many passions, advised simultaneous skepticism and open-thinking, and granted me chances for both exploration and (just as necessary) failure. All of these things, while granting me many different types of knowledge, have given me a special window to learn about my personal growth.
The life of a college student can be hectic. Alarm clocks, piles of homework, keeping social lives from ruining academic lives--it's a delicate balancing act which can end up being particularly stressful if you start losing your footing. I handled it all pretty well last year, but I already know this year is going to be slightly different. I've picked up quite a few more activities in the past week alone than i ever expected I'd be doing when I was a freshman. If I was on a balance beam before, I must be on a tightwire now.
So the first week has ended (a very short week, mind you) and already I have been assigned an abundance of reading from my professors, attended a rave and harvested some succulent melons from the garden. Not much has changed on the homework front but looking around campus, I can tell that my last year at C of I will not be dull. Changes have been made to the McCain Cafe, such as the introduction of plates and cutlery (not just paper plates.) This greatly pleases me as it means that we will now be reusing plates instead of sending scores of paper plates and to-go boxes into the dump.