The End of Orientation.

September 1, 2008

As fast as it began, orientation has come to a close. I’ve been having a fantastic time here with “The Cabal”, as we’ve christened ourselves, and we’re drawing up a “Cabalstitution” this week. (If this doesn’t sound hilarious and fun to you, you’re either too nerdy for this school, or not nerdy enough.)

Yesterday we all went into Philly together and bought silly hats. This was not on a whim, it was for the silly hat dance of course! There are some super fantastic pictures of us in our silly hats here if you’re interested. We did use our connections (aka Air Force Erick, our resident 21 year old) to get a bottle of Vanilla Stoli…we were perfect angels regarding dry week until yesterday! But we were far from the only ones that had a few drinks before the dance, we saw more than a few people being basically carried out of Paces after the dance. Plus, one bottle of vodka between the Cabal and a few crashers does not go terribly far as far as intoxication goes.

But back to Philly. After walking in circles for a long time, we found The Gallery, a mall in which we found our silly hats. When we had finished the silly hat excursion, we trekked down to South St. at Jeanie‘s suggestion. We did not all eat together, Charlotte and Michael ended up getting frozen yogurt, and Jeanie ate at Chickpeas, a vegan restaurant. The restaurant that Erick, Greg, Rayan and I ate at was about as far from a vegan-friendly dining experience as you can imagine. I had onion rings and a cheesesteak, which was delicious. It was also better on my stomach than Sharples food if you can believe it.

After dinner, we made our way over to Condom Kingdom, which is possibly the swankiest adult store in Philadelphia. We all bonded by looking at ridiculous adult films together, and then I bonded with Charlotte and Michael by smacking them with a fuzzy whip that could definitely double as a cat toy. Hey, they asked!

Then we made it back to campus. I was surprised at how cheap the train ride was, it was eight dollars for a round trip. The way everyone was talking, I figured it was twenty or something! We split up to change into our most suave clothes, and then met at Rayan’s room in Hallowell, where we toasted our newfound friendship and even newer-found silly hats. After some infighting over what music to put on, we finally made our way to Paces for the Silly Hat Dance.

First of all, NO ONE was wearing a silly hat. I’m sorry, if it’s a silly hat dance, you put on a damned silly hat. Second, it was completely pitch black, so it took us awhile to find each other, even though we had come together! And third, there was no booze, the food and music kind of sucked, but all in all, we had a great time dancing like maniacs.

We decided that we didn’t want the party to end there, so the Cabal, along with James, who I met a few nights before, as well as sophomores Ben, Nemo, and a few others, adventured down to Crum Creek for a late night swim. We didn’t actually swim because we were in clothes, but we did wade in. It was a really great time, even if on the way there people were fighting with Jeanie saying that if lions had refrigeration technology, they would kill all the gazelles too. Yeah…it’s EXACTLY as ridiculous as it sounds.

But, Rayan complained that I don’t talk enough in this blog about how fantastic our conversations are. And they truly are. If you are thinking about transferring here, or even applying as a high school senior, and you love being around tons and tons of people you can just talk to about anything, definitely do it. I have never been around so many people that can truly hold their own in arguments with me, and even on the most bitterly divided subjects (for example, this evening’s discussion on ‘designer babies’), I walk away completely satisfied. I know it’s corny, but the friends I’ve made in this past week are absolutely wonderful, and I already love them to death. There’s really nothing you can lose when you’re surrounded by people who can make you think, and possibly more importantly, make you crack up hysterically. I cannot name one time so far that I’ve been in the company of these guys and not having a great time. And since we’ve spent basically twenty-four hours a day together since getting here, that’s really saying something.

Today was uneventful. I got up, went to CA brunch, then to the bookstore with Charlotte and Jeanie. I got some posters for the dorm, and even cleaned it up! Now my room is super neat just in time to get completely WRECKED once I’m overloaded with school work. I also strolled through the activities fair; it was great, except there are at least ten different activities that I signed up for notifications from, and I’d love to go to each and every one of them.

There you have it, the end of orientation. In exactly ten hours and one minute, I will be sitting in my first Swarthmore class, 11:30 Intro to Economics with Professor Golub. And I’m happy to say…I can’t wait.

Trepidatiously yours,
The Transfer Student

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One Response to “The End of Orientation.”

  1. lisetteder Says:

    awww! swarthmore’s so cute. no, to any specs reading this: it is really a wonderful place. i don’t think i’d feel so much at home after just one week if i were at any other school than swat. the people are amazing, the classes are (at least starting out) amazing, the deans and faculty are friendly and caring and supportive, the food is not terrible. you should come here, specs. really.
    and one side comment: chickpeas is definitely not vegan, as i was about two seconds away from having meat on a reel shredded onto my plate before i freaked out and reminded them i wanted a vegetarian dinner. however, chickpeas is very vegan-friendly, and also great for people like me who want a whole wheat pita and brown rice instead of the bleached/bromated/metabolism-destroying alternatives: you have a choice at chickpeas. and the falafel is truly the best i have ever had. the texture is firm and crisp on the outside and just the right chewy-soft factor inside, with perfect spicing. the prices are SO reasonable for the amount of food you get (it’s A LOT!! if you get a combo platter! i never fill up on $8 of food and i did here. i could barely finish), and i’d recommend it to anyone.
    but…if you are looking for a totally vegan restaurant near south street, horizons is about a five minute walk (like two streets away) and has the greatest food you’ll ever taste. seriously.
    –end hijacking of augusta’s blog–

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