West Side Pride
Aaah, the first Tuesday Glog. I am truly honored.
Although it feels like we’re in full swing here at Gould, the fact is we’ve only had one week of classes. It wasn’t long ago that I walked into our local Rite Aid and was shocked to see school supplies lining the shelves. There was a pang of excitement at the return of another school year, and I’d be lying if I didn’t also acknowledge a pang of remorse as I bid farewell to a wonderful summer vacation. That seems long ago now. The school supplies have already been replaced by Halloween candy and costumes.
That stroll through school supplies got me thinking though. I’m in my mid 30s (for some perspective) and I remember being a child and walking through the endless aisles of binders, notebooks, pens, erasers, looking for the ones that would define me for the year. Remember “Trapper Keepers?” For all you young-folk out there, Trapper Keepers were the ultimate notebook of the 80s. They were as hot as iPods and as varied as cell phones (well, not really- it was the 80s). Each functioned as a 3-ring notebook but the whole thing could be sealed with a fold of Velcro. The magic of Trapper Keepers wasn’t that innovative Velcro panel, the magic was held in the images. That was how we let our friends and teachers know what kind of kid we were.
My Trapper Keeper always had a picture of an animal on the cover. I’m not talking drawings, we’re talking high-quality air-brushed cheesy photos. The classics included horses running through fields of yellow flowers, or puppies and kittens so fluffy you could almost feel them. Then there were the others with cars or guitars- boy things. I was into the animals. And as I look at my life now, I still am.
Here at Gould, what do my imaginary “Trapper Keepers” look like? Well, I have several… One has a picture of a big beautiful brick building, Gehring Students’ Home. It’s home to all Gould’s boarding girls, 5 faculty members, 3 cats, 2 kittens, 2 big dogs, some fish, and 2 delightful little boys. Another has a picture of a red and white post and beam barn with farm animals and students standing outside. The Barn is home to Gould’s Farm and Forest program and is home to draft horses, sheep, goats, chickens, cows, and a bunny.
Most of my life at Gould, and therefore most of my GLOG entries, will center around the West Side of campus. Gehring– the only dorm on the West Side of Church Street. The Barn- just a bit farther west than Gehring. And, how convenient, Ordway is also on the West Side. So if you like Gehring, if you think farms are cool, and if you like to eat, don’t be shy. Amelia, one of Gehring’s head proctors, knows how to show it… West Side Pride.
West Side Updates:
From the barn- we had our first frost of the season Monday morning, and it was also the first day of Biology students doing morning barn chores. At 6:30 Rosemary (one of our barn proctors) and roommates Kiley (of Glogging fame) and Alli and I met at the barn. When I arrived Rosemary was sitting on the floor with Tukee, the angora rabbit, warming her lap. We got to work. 6:30 is pretty early for most kids. The quote of the morning went something like this. “The bunny food is in the bag that says ‘rabbit food.'” Yup, things are real complex down there in the morning.
Also in barn news, this weekend 2 of the horses, Dinah and Tinker, and I are headed to the Commonground Fair in Unity, Maine. We’ll be helping fair visitors learn about living and working with draft horses and explaining how they teach students at Gould. Current and past barn proctors and other students will join us on Sunday for the day. We’ll be flying the Gould colors above our stall so come say hello if you’re there.
In Gehring news- The first week was full of informational meetings, late night snacks, and introductions. It didn’t take long for the distinction between new and returning students to fade. It’s amazing what a week will do. Students are settling into the patterns of living in the dorm and us faculty-types who live and work in the dorms are adjusting to late nights of duty. Our role is more difficult when students aren’t in bed ready to sleep at 10. As a boost to the team of faculty who live and work here I spent much of the summer training “THE ENFORCER!” Don’t be surprised to find him roaming the halls late at night making sure it’s quiet. And beware- despite his small size, this young Jedi knows how to wield his light saber!
Until next week… read on Gloggers!