Falling on my Face and Feeling at Home

Wednesday was officially the start of my second day of classes for the spring semester and I have never felt more at home. Not only is University number 3 starting to stand out above the rest but I got to experience snow. Since moving to the south snow has been a weather condition I have seen less and less frequently and as a result greatly miss. I had fully expected to wake up to canceled classes, however apparently my University is living ing a fantasy world where they believe all of the commuter students magically know how to drive in the snow.

Growing up in a town that typically gets snow in excess of 100 inches per year I get excited at the opportunity to drive to class in the snow (my friends typically not so much). So while I was not particularly excited about being asked to attend my classes I was more than willing to spend as much of the day in my car as I could (and going to class at least gave me an excuse to do so). My first class was scheduled for 9am and I left my apartment at 8:30 to pick up a sister on the way (I have never had a passenger more afraid for their life than she was). Years of life in the snow has me well prepared for driving a car that feels as if it is on ice skates and as a result I did my fair share of intentionally sliding around the road when it was safe to do so. When we got to campus I dropped her off at her academic building and then headed in the general direction of my first class, running into my best friend along the way. Then I made the decision to skip class.

The University had sent out several emails informing students that while the school was open commuter students were to use their own discretion when deciding to come to class (they also closed most sidewalks and most building entrances instead of clearing the snow and ice). As a result I decided to use my discretion to skip my first class to get coffee with my best friend. We sat in the library where I repeatedly mentioned how excited I was to see the campus covered in snow, drive in the snow, look at snow, feel snow in the air, and he repeatedly mentioned how much he hated snow, asked me to talk about anything other than snow, and started calling me Wiscuntsin every time I mentioned the weather. It was wonderful. I attended my second class for the sole purpose of taking claim over what I knew would become my assigned seat in that class.

While he went to his third class of the day I drove my sister home and then spent half an hour driving around town for the purpose of experiencing as much of the snow as I possibly could. I ended up meeting my best friend after he got out of class and we went to a bar near campus for lunch where proceeded to pregame our last class of the day with Whiskey and Coke, after lunch we went to my apartment so I could switch out my books and pregame our last class with a $3 bottle of wine. I would love there to be some validity to my statement of “I wasn’t drunk when I got to class” but I also definitely fell on my face in the process of walking up a hill to get to class.

Drunk last class turned into tipsy recital rehearsal which turned into my favorite feeling in the world as I walked to my car to head home. Light jacket, temperature just below freezing, just enough snow for the grass to disappear, cool air on my face, walking across a parking lot in boots. Historically it is the feeling I got carrying my skis out of the lodge after a race or a good workout, now it is the feeling I get walking to my car after a one of the best days of college I have had. A year ago it would have made me homesick, now it reminds me that this is exactly the place I need to be.

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