I’ve spent the past hour looking at the various recreational sporting clubs I might be able to take part of during my time at Harvard. Next to me sits a pile of golden “reminder” post-it notes that have actual events of consequence that I need to keep up with…playing out my ice hockey fantasy is not one of them.
It’s hard to get back into the swing of “real life.” I’ve spent the last 2 weeks traipsing around Eastern Canada for a much needed vacation/kick-off to grad school. My “bestie” (I hate using this phrase but…) drove down from Toronto, picked me up in New York City where I flung 90% of my worldly belongings into the back of her small car and then we headed to Boston to housesit for a week before heading further north.
We camped in Maine, New Brunswick (Canada…not New Jersey), Prince Edward Island and Quebec- mostly in National Parks. As it is Canada’s 150th birthday…all the parks waived entrance fees. It’s been my dream since reading Anne of Green Gables to visit PEI…and it lived up to every expectation. To prepare for that particular portion of our journey we did what all men think women do on such adventures…we read aloud from the book.
Yes, I know it sounds borderline unicorn/ rainbows/ Indigo Girls type of girl power nonsense (although.. I love, love the Indigo Girls) but there is power in reading such a book out loud. 1. I consider myself an expert in the Megan Follows 1986 Anne of Green Gables movie series. Yes…test me. 2. I made Alison-the-bestie watch the new Netflix version (which I was initially opposed to…but proved to be an awesome spin on the story) and 3. We made for an excellent book club. There are so many parts of Anne’s journey I had never thought about as an adult. Such as the reasoning behind Marilla’s harsh exterior or the psychological toll of being an abused orphan can take on a pre-teen. Although my background is different from Anne Shirley, I related to her more than ever.
This past Tuesday, “Bestie” dropped me off in Montreal (she continued on to Toronto) where I caught a Greyhound bound for Boston. My adventure in Cambridge officially started. It was strange arriving at South Station rather than Penn as my final destination. It didn’t feel the same way entering New York City does
after time apart from it. The thrill was replaced with a wave of sadness mixed with anxiety. I wouldn’t be seeing Boboh and Jett (my beloved cats) or my brother when I arrived “home” but rather an Residential Advisor who gave me my keys and walked me to my dorm room.
It was sparse but far more gorgeous than any dorm I had known. My dorm room at Sac State was made of cinderblock and felt like a makeshift prison. This room is
bigger than my one in Brooklyn, with newly renovated kitchens, study lounges and a gym (which I have yet to venture to). I’ve also never lived in the heart of a city.
I’m a 2 minute walk to Harvard Square and a short walk or ride to the divinity school. I promised myself that at least for the first semester I would give myself the best environment I could to succeed in this new world. Of course now I have to figure out how to afford such lux living…that’s one of my post-it note reminders. I love making a place home-organizing it, decorating, moving around furniture etc. That’s the fun part. As i’m here a month before orientation even begins- I need to use dorm universe as a base to make sure that everything prepped for the fall semester and there are a lot of odds and ends that need to be tied up.
I still feel like I don’t belong at Harvard…that me being here is just a scenario in the dream world. I know this stems from all sorts of imaginary places and it has only been a few days (not to mention that it’s only summer and so I’m not preoccupied with school activities and I don’t have access to everything yet). This thinking is no doubt some type of armor to protect myself in the case that everything just turns to shit and am I kicked out before I have the chance to even begin and disappointing all those who had a seedling of faith in me. The waaaaaaaaay deep down truth is (shhhhh!) I’m excited to see where all this will take me. Alright back to the post-it note pile.