Sunday, July 12, 2015

Getting To Know UChicago

I am so excited for college. Today, I truly started to feel like a student at University of Chicago, and the experience is making me very eager for the real thing. Granted, we haven’t started to real challenge yet–classes and the accompanying work and studying­–but I suspect that even with the work, I will still feel the same about the college experience.

I slept decently last night, which was a relief. I think I’m adjusting to dorm life fairly easily. In the morning, I met up with Sayali for a run, and it was so refreshing to go on a run outdoors, as opposed to all the treadmill workouts I’ve been doing these past few days. Plus, the weather was cool and drizzling lightly, which are some of my favorite conditions for running. On our run, we decided to investigate the gym. The Ratner Athletic Center is giant, and I’d say it’s quite a luxurious exercise facility. There’s a large pool, rooms with weight equipment, gyms for basketball and volleyball, and a circular balcony lined with cardio machines. And as students, we have access to all of it!

After our run, we met up with our other new friends for breakfast. So far Cathey Dining Commons has been a satisfactory food source, but I suspect as the weeks go on I’m going to tire of it. I’m very pleased with the amount of fruits and vegetables available, as I often struggle to find enough produce when I’m not eating at home. After breakfast, I had my first college bathroom shower experience! It wasn’t bad at all, as our bathrooms are very clean and spacious. In fact, there’s even an individual bathroom/shower, which I chose to use because it’s easier and closer to my room than the communal ones.

Although there was an optional ultimate Frisbee game being held this morning, Sayali, Shrija, Morgan and I all wanted to try and do some more exploring before our classes begin. We are anticipating a lot of work and studying, and wanted to cherish this last free day. One of many perks of being considered a UChicago student is that we’ll be getting a Ventra card, which will give us access to all the public transportation. Unfortunately, we wouldn’t receive those until this afternoon, so we were limited to places we get walking distance. We decided to head north towards 53rd St. and were able to visit many little shops, as well as heading east to briefly check out the lakefront. I like the area surrounding UChicago a lot, but I’m glad to have a group to wander with because I feel safer that way.

We returned to the campus for lunch. Since we had been walking for basically two hours, we all agreed it would be a good idea to rest and relax in our dorms afterwards. Before retreating to my room, I decided to check out the basement dorm. It’s a little creepy because it’s drab stone and claustrophobic, but there is a laundry room, lots of music practice rooms, and a small exercise room. The practice rooms all have pianos in them, so I decided to take advantage of this and practice piano, as well as flute.

At 3, we had a meeting in the lounge to discuss transportation. Katie didn’t actually have our Ventra cards to distribute yet, but she explained that we’d be getting them soon, as well as going over the various methods of transportation. I think most of us are still a little confused as to how to get places, but Katie assured that we’d be able to learn it, especially if we go on the RA trip to the Magnificent Mile this Saturday. Following the quick meeting, Shrija, Brandon and I decided to go look for our classroom so we won’t be rushed tomorrow morning. We found the building but were’t able to get inside to the classrooms, so we’ll allocate extra time tomorrow in case we have trouble. There was another meeting at 4:30, this one in Kent Hall. The meeting covered policies and safety, including a visit from a member of UChicago’s extensive police force. Immediately after the meeting, the RAs were leading restaurant trips for dinner. I chose to go for Thai food, and we went to the Snail, a restaurant we had passed earlier this morning. My pad thai was pretty good, and it was a pleasant change to eat ethnic food. Dinner was also enjoyable because I sat with Emma, Alexis, and Defne, three girls I hadn't talked to much, as well as Shrija and Sayali. Meeting new people has been going really well for me so far.

The evening was relaxing, I spent most of the time in my room but went down for Study Break at 9. Katie had made us mac and cheese. I'm appreciated that she made something salty instead of just doing sugary treats. My plan was to get a lot of sleep tonight in order to be prepared for classes tomorrow. I'm anxious to begin class because I'm genuinely interested in the subject material, but I'm a little afraid for the rigorous academic challenge I'm expecting. Regardless of how hard the work is, I know this is going to be a valuable course for me, and I'm ready for whatever class tomorrow brings.

1 comment:

  1. Tamika -

    I'm glad you guys have access to the premiere fitness facilities on campus.

    Re: your Ventra cards, which Ventra stops are closest to the campus? I will be using one of those to get to you on Thursday for the check-ins.