Friday, October 25, 2013

WNL Young Alumni Weekend, Day 1

Suzie and I woke up pretty early this morning so that we could eat breakfast and get on the Metro so that we could meet Meg at her place around 9.  She was the best person out of group to be the driver of the trip because a) she had a roomier vehicle and b) she's more familiar with driving around campus than the rest of us.  We got there around 9 and waited around for Robyn to show up.  Meg pulled up where the buses were picking people up.  The drivers were not pleased and honked their horns.  We tossed our luggage in the back of the SUV and leaped in the car and away we went!

The drive there was pretty smooth with minimal traffic.  Funny thing in the car...Robyn was saying that she wasn't going home for Thanksgiving.  I invited her to my family's Thanksgiving.  "We'll set up a table for you...I mean, a chair."

While in the car, we were communicating with Page and Brightman, who were driving from Georgia to Lexington.  They had already been driving the day before and were in Virginia today.  At one point, Page texted "back right" and it took the 4 of us in the car to realize that Page was already at the restaurant that we were planning to eat for lunch (Don Tequila, a Mexican restaurant).  "Drive faster!!"  Ok, Page, safety first.

When we got there, we found her in the back corner with her computer on and headphones plugged in.  She has a pharmacy school test on Monday, so she was trying to cram all the studying she could.  Brightman basically dropped her off and decided to go mountain biking.  At lunch, I was trying to figure out the room situation since we got 2 rooms for 5 people.  "Someone will have to room with Meg" but what I was trying to say was that someone would have to share the room with Page and Brightman.  It turned out that Brightman wasn't even going to stay with us anyway, so Page and Meg shared a room and Robyn, Suzie and I shared the other room.

After lunch, I wanted to go to the Science Center to see my favorite chemistry professor.  Page and Robyn had also taken a Netherlands art class with him. I didn't tell him that I was coming and he was walking down the hall with his advisee. You could see him slowly register who I was. "TINAAA!!" followed by a big hug. Compared to the other chemistry majors, I wasn't the smartest academically and I didn't go to medical school like everyone else. However, he didn't hold that against me and asked if I would be willing to come to campus at some point to talk to the students about public health because who knows...maybe there's a "Tina" student that's there right now that's in the same situation as I was in.

We decided to continue our walk around campus.  Wow, so many changes.  One of the dorms on the Quad was converted to office buildings, the library was renovated on the first floor (very open floor layout and more well lit).  The circulation desk that I remembered wasn't there anymore, but at least there was an information desk in case anyone had questions.  They've since upgraded to a self-check out system. We left Page at the library so she could have some quiet time to study.

While in the English building, Suzie found an English professor who gave us a tour of the newness.  There were new lounges where students could congregate before or after class, complete with nice comfy chairs and a large TV that displayed news and campus announcements.

At some point, we went to the campus bookstore so we could stock up on WNL gear.  I got a Tervis with the trident and a sticker for my car.  Yay, school pride! 

After walking around campus, we decided to to to the Palms to hang out and eat dinner eventually.  Suzie and Robyn had appointments with other professors/students/people so the Palms was a good central location.  We were there for a good 3 hours but it was fine because we left right when business was picking up and we were able to give them back our table.  As we were walking from the Palms to campus, we were looking at some of the stores in town.  Where's (fill in the store's name)?  Didn't (store's name) used to be here?  Followed by a series of similiar questions.  A guy that was walking behind us heard our conversation. "It moved 3 years ago."  Oh.  Heh.  We learned later on that a breakfast place that we liked (Aunt Sarah's) and a cafe called Joyful Spirit had since closed.  Joyful Spirit was replaced by a gelato place that Suzie actually went to while we were at the Palms.  Apparently, it's really good.  How can you go wrong with gelato?

Next up was a reception outside in a heated tent. There were several food stations: stir fry served in Chinese food take-out containers, mashed potato bar, cheese/dip, and cupcakes.  I was so excited to see the cupcakes, and I picked out one of the yellow cake ones to try.  I was a little disappointed when I bit in because the frosting was hard.  I guess they had been refrigerated prior to the reception, which makes sense.  On the other hand, I really enjoyed the cheese/dip station and the Lexington lemonade that was provided. 

At some point, we went back to the bookstore because the girls wanted to get some apparel.  I was happy with my earlier purchases, but I did try on a t-shirt that ended up being too tight.  Suzie had been eye-ing a hoodie and put one on.  "What do you think?"  I said the first thing that came to mind, "What you going to do with this?" pointing to her chest area.  I was trying to communicate that it was a little tight there, but it resulted in a fit of giggles (a running joke of the weekend).
They put up a fence for the renovations.  Painting students at school decided to make the fence look pretty.  Reconstruction doesn't have to be an eye-sore, right?  It's probably difficult to tell in this picture, but the subject of the artwork is fairy tales (Sleeping Beauty, 3 Little Pigs, etc.).

Outside the library, waiting for Suzie to finish her phone call.

In front of Washington Hall.

The fire pit that the bookstore folks wanted to show off.

Hi, Page!

Evening reception.



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