In honor of this dreary day here is a picture of the sun setting behind the Sorority Houses on campus two weeks ago. It was a gorgeous day that felt like Spring and, hopefully, we will be having many more like it soon.
Usually, my favorite days to give tours are the days when the sun is radiating directly above campus, reflecting off every building and sidewalk of W&L, and every color on campus is more vivid than even an Instagram effect can mimic.
However, today I discovered a new beautiful. When the campus is completely covered in a blanket of snow, the contrast of the pure white and the deep mahogany brick enhances the color scheme of this campus even more than the rays of bright sunlight. Snow outlines and highlights the buildings and the trees, and draws even more attention to everything about this campus that I love. The sun reflects off every snowflake and creates a breathtaking view everywhere I go on campus, making my day here seem even more picturesque. The school photographer should be snapping away today, but even he can’t do this beautiful day justice.
Ok, so I didn’t choose W&L just because it had coat hooks outside its classrooms, but it actually did play a pretty big role in my decision. During one of my many tours (it took me a long time to accept that my Dad had found the college I wanted to go to) I went through Washington Hall where I saw these coat hooks line the hallway. Immediately I was hit with a feeling of illogical nostalgia and began picturing myself trudging through snow (uphill both ways) to the Colonnade for class in the long gone era of ‘Love Story’-like academia. I imagined stomping my boots and shaking out my coat before pushing open the white double-doors of Washington Hall to enter into a building filled with knowledge, a world where we still wrote our essays by hand and Mark Zuckerberg had not yet been born.
Clearly, the coat hooks struck a chord with me and, oddly enough, and led me to realize what I truly wanted in a University. That idyllic academic experience that was conjured up in my head was alive and well at W&L and played a huge role in my decision to enroll here. In the four years since that fateful tour, I have hung my coat up many times outside a stimulating and fascinating class. While I may not actually go uphill both ways, I know that every time I walk up to The Hill, the coat hooks and the classrooms will always be there.
I’ve been dying to get into Washington Hall since I got to W&L last fall. The middle hall on the Colonnade, it houses the President’s office as well as parts of a few academic departments. It had been undergoing renovation for about two years and has just recently been opened, although there are a few finishing touches to be added in the entryway. I had almost gotten used to the maroon construction walls, but I’m really interested in our history and I’m excited that part of our architectural history is with us again.
The Colonnade renovation is now 60% complete: Robinson (math) and Tucker (languages) Halls have yet to go under the knife. This is such an important project because it increases accessibility and brings out the functional characteristics as well as the beauty of some of our major classroom buildings. I spoke to one of my advisors, Professor DeLaney, about the earlier renovations to Newcomb and Payne Halls, and he felt that they preserved the buildings’ character as well as made them more usable.
Having spent much time in Robinson and Tucker, I am so excited to see those buildings renovated in the coming years. Altogether I’m glad W&L is willing to put time, effort, and money into our historic buildings and I hope they, like our school, continue to last far into the future.
This afternoon I ate one of my favorite meals, tacos, for lunch at my fraternity. This seems like a little thing, but it got me thinking about the experience of eating here. It comes down to a lot more than just sitting, eating, and leaving.
Our fraternity chef, Hilary, does a lot more than make our food. Our brothers have enjoyed getting to know her over the years she has been with us. When our brother Keith starred in “Bye Bye Birdie,” she asked us for a ticket so she could be sure not to miss it. Hilary is wonderful to have around the house and all her recipes are delicious too.
I don’t generally eat on campus anymore, except from vending machines, but what I miss most is the ladies who work at the co-op. I saw them so often last year that they knew my evening snack order by heart (ginger ale and breadsticks) and a lot of other things about me. I really believe there aren’t many schools where students have any kind of relationship with important people like the ones who serve our food, so I am glad I was able to be here and get to know many of the co-op ladies by name as well as know other things about their lives.
There are so many great places to eat in town too, but I’m perfectly happy to have my fraternity tacos, visit my co-op ladies, or stop by the vending machines in the library for some Swedish fish. W&L is just such a great place to be!
My depressing Halloween in the library just got a lot sweeter! An adorable little kid dressed as the red Power Ranger just left whoppers on the desk next to me. It really is the little things…Happy Halloween!
If you are planning a visit to W&L I would really recommend to come now! All of the flowers are blooming and the campus is so beautiful and alive. It makes the upcoming exam week bearable knowing that I can relax outside with my friends after the exam!
You would think that after living in Virginia for a year and a half that snowfall would no longer amaze me. But I guess growing up in Texas for eighteen years has still left me mystified as to what this concept of “winter” is and all it entails. Even though I still struggle with dressing for snow and learning how to walk over icy surfaces, I can’t help but gaze out the window in amazement at its beauty. Or maybe that’s my Texan inner child hoping class will get cancelled so I can go build a snowman on the Colonnade.
D-Hall, one of W&L’s dining options, featured my favorite soup today. Their chicken tortilla soup is delicious! I wish I could get the recipe. Even today, one of the first truly hot and sunny days, I couldn’t resist a bowl of soup. D-Hall has so much great food to choose from, I often find myself wandering around pondering what to eat. The sensory overload can be overwhelming! All of my friends have different favorites, and some of them really get creative with their meals. D-Hall offers so much that you can really eat whatever you want. The menu changes everyday, so you don’t get bored either! The D-Hall staff does a wonderful job of preparing fresh food and keeping it stocked all day long. I love just popping into the Commons to grab a snack in between classes. D-Hall is just another one of W&L’s great features. I am really going to miss it next year when I’m living in the Sorority House (although, the food there is pretty good too)!