Friday, September 07, 2007

time and space

1. Could it be... my last first day of school? At least until grad school? (Is there a first day of school in grad school?)
I got up with a feeling of slight nerves, on account of not having caught up much with my languages or even really looking at where my classes were going to be. I hunted down my trusty old UNB '02 clipboard and headed up to campus on the 9:15 bus - it's always been sufficient to get me to class on time for a 9:30 class before, so it must be still, right? No.
My Latin class was inexplicably located in an obscure corner of the third floor of the physics building, and so I arrived a bit late and more than a bit out of breath. Then, I learned that we are reading Vergil's Aeneid this year in Latin. An epic poem about the mythic founding of Rome.
"I sing of arms and of a man: his fate
had made him fugitive: he was the first
to journey from the coasts of Troy as far
as Italy and the Lavinian shores
Across the lands and waters he was battered
beneath the violence of the high ones for
the savage Juno's unforgetting anger."
I have never liked translating poetry in Latin, but I suppose it must be faced. I have most of my old classmates back, plus a nice student from last year's Latin class who is taking an extra year of Latin to get ready for grad school, and Cora Woolsey, better known as Vetch (the singer for the band that always plays the craft fairs to thundering applause), who isn't exactly finished second year yet but is starting third year anyway.

2. I stopped at the science library to get a coffee before facing my second class, and there ran into Simon, an old acquaintance, who has finished his degree at STU and is taking his Masters at UNB; he was on his way to intermediate Latin. Good fun.
My second class is sort of a filler class. I had planned to take three classes so as to focus on my languages, but I received a scholarship this year that requires me to take four courses each semester, so it's cheaper to take four than three. That said, it should be an interesting class nonetheless. I was sort of confused that it was in the nursing building, though, and then even more confused that the professor (Callahan) has his offices in Bridges, one of the dorms. He then cleared up my confusion by explaining that Carleton Hall, which has been my second home for several years, is undergoing extensive renovations to put in an elevator, so all the Classics and Literature and languages and English and History is displaced.
The literature class will be interesting. I've gotten really used to massive term papers and small classes of snooty upper year students, whereas this class involves 500-word "reflection pieces" and hordes of smelly frosh in leggings. (I suspect they haven't found/figured out/gotten over their fear of the dorm showers yet.)

3. My next class was Anthropology of Literacy and Learning, which is an education course cross-listed with anthropology and taught by an anth prof named Evie Plaice. Unfortunately, it is held in the education building, where I used to work - clear at the top of the hill. I have ten minutes to get from the bottom of the hill to the top, assuming World Lit doesn't go over time, and I fully expect to arrive half-dead at every single class.
Anticipating this, I strode up the hill vigourously and then got utterly lost in the building and ran from one end to the other and up three flights of stairs, arrived at the room half-dead with the class already in session, walked in, spotted a friend from the Mexico trip, sat down with her, and then - the class ended.
I had walked into the class before mine two minutes before the end of the lecture and the professor didn't even bat an eye.
I apologized to the prof, who laughed, and waited quietly for my class to start. Cora (Vetch) is in the class too, which is nice, and Prof Plaice seems very nice and has lots of interesting ethnographies for us to read. I'm looking forward to it.

4. For lunch, I went down to Doreen's cafe in Tilley to meet Sean, but ended up chatting with my Latin classmate Daniel a bit while waiting. When Sean came I introduced him to Doreen, and we had a nice catch up on classes, etc, and went for a walk so he could see where some of his classes are (Economics is also displaced from Carleton and so he has classes all over the place).

5. My Greek classes are with Professor Murray, the Dean of Arts, and because of the shortage of classrooms and his schedule, we're meeting in his (very swank) office for class. The four other students are all male, and we have varied stories about past Greek experiences - two of us took it two years ago, two are survivors of last year (there was a higher attrition rate than usual), and the other is a transfer from UNBSJ. We're continuing to voyage through the text I used before, Athenaze I & II. I think it might almost be manageable. I didn't even get nearly as badly put on the spot as I thought I might be, as rusty as I am. I do, however, have nine chapters to review for Monday.

6. After all was said and done, I met Neil at Doreen's for coffee. I've been friends with Neil since Frosh Week, and we fell out of contact about a year and a half ago when he had to take a year off of school, but he's back and determined to finish his degree, so we'll actually be graduating together this spring. We caught up on our lives and the people we know; James is relatively well (Neil is living with him again) and Sid is fat and talkative, as always. I hope to have a great deal more coffee with him over the school year.

7. And then I came home. I hurt all down my right side, from a combination of some sort of pain in my neck from lifting at the festival and enthusiastically bounding up and down the hill all day. I think we're going to have a quiet evening of rented movies and spending time with our whiny, neglected cats; I think Tonks is either stressed or sick, as she's been throwing up all day. Poor thing.

8. This weekend: getting up early tomorrow morning and getting to the bookstore while the hordes of shoppers are too hung over to queue up! And then probably seeing Will, who is now moved into his new place.


Blogger dp said...

Thank you for the wonderful blog. I miss your school blogs... and I am sad that this will be the last year of them for a bit.
Nice to hear Neil is back, and I am happy that Sid is still making his presence know in the house of boys.
How exciting for Sean, UNB.... what did he think. Doreen, still there? Nice to see old faces I bet. Weird to have two differnt lifes, Craft Council people and then school people. Well, even in school you have two differnt lives.. Classics and Anths... feeling somewhat multipersonalitied?

7:07 PM  

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