Monday, September 08, 2008

Finders Keepers

The Law Quad is the perfect place to read on the first day of fall when the skies are gray and the temperature is not quite warm, but not quite cool. And that is where I found myself today after a morning of pointless stress.

I was doing reading for class sitting in the reference room of the Hatcher Graduate Library (which itself is a beautiful room). It was all technical mumbo jumbo that I'll never use beyond the confines of grad school. The Mathematical Theory of Communication was the paper that I didn't read. I started it, and then my brain began to ooze slowly from my ear. My mind began to wander and to try and make problems where there were none. Homework so far is just reading, which itself is a task, but still easy, and when should grad school be easy? Money is ugly, but isn't it always? Everything seems to be fine, but why should it be? Shouldn't I be stressed and grizzled and exhausted? I must be doing something wrong.

But I guess that maybe I'm not.

So with those thoughts running heavy and hard through my head I decided that enough was enough. That I was caught up far enough that I didn't need to stress anymore. I went back home and made a lunch, ate it, and then returned to campus. I was going to do some me time.

And that is how I found myself wandering over the Law Quad.

I'd seen it on my bike ride to work and to class, but never had I wandered in. It looked beautiful from the outside. The building old with brick buildings tall archway entrances and a green lawn visible beyond. Like the ideal college image.

The inside is a large plaza of green lawn intercut by a small grid of paths paved by flat stones. There are large, old trees with wide roots. The buildings have tall spires with intricate fringe work, huge wooden doors, and old windows. I took a seat against one of the unoccupied trees (many of the others had students with books and papers spread before them). And it is there that I discovered the perfect place for reading the Lord of the Rings. Beneath a gunmetal gray sky. A soft breeze. A warm cup of tea. Occasional squirrel bounding by in the grass. Students with thick backpacks and stacks of books in their hands. This is what a college is supposed to look like. I think I could easily fall in love with a place like that. I may head back there again, with a picnic perhaps, smoke my pipe, whittle away the hours contentedly. This is the collegiate experience.

Fall is coming fast upon the heels of a long summer. It was the season I hated most for the longest time, but I find myself relishing its existence now. When the leaves change. When the days grow shorter and cooler. It's always this time of year I find myself engrossed in adventure stories. Sometimes wishing for an adventure of my own.


Anonymous September 9, 2008 at 7:30 AM  

sounds just like college should... sitting and taking it all in... good for you...