Monthly Archives: September 2013

In a strange land

I’ve taken those words out of those used in the piece “Belshazzar’s Feast,” an oratorio we performed last spring on Commencement Weekend. They fit because, well, they describe where I am.

That’s not to say that I don’t fit in in Decorah, Iowa. I’ve spent three school years here, plus two summers before that, and have gotten to know the people well. But after living in Seattle again for three months and immersing yourself in metropolitan culture, it’s striking to drive through southern Minnesota/northern Iowa, where you can see nothing but corn and soybeans. Whenever I go home to Washington, Decorah seems to be light-years away. But I’m here.

Maybe this feeling also has to do with the fact that I’m living in an entirely new area of campus: College Apartments. I lived in Olson Hall both my sophomore and junior years, and freshman year, I lived in Brandt. Living in the same building for two years – heck, the same floor – has made those two run together, so it’s hard to tell apart the memories from those years. But this is senior year, and it’s going to be completely different. It’s a fresh start. I’m happier than I have been in a long time, after my summer internship confirmed to me that I’m making the right career choice and helped me gain confidence in who I am. So far, so good, after three days of class.

My activity load isn’t small, of course, but it seems manageable. I’ll have Symphony Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra, which means I’ll have an hour and a half rehearsal every weekday plus sectionals and performances (including the famed Christmas at Luther!). I co-lead the Write On! club with an English major colleague of mine, which is two nights a week of diversion from stress and a chance to take a glimpse into yourself. I’m a co-news editor with the Chips student newspaper, and I serve as the historian for the Performing Arts Committee, which puts on the Center Stage Series. I have three classes instead of four, which is already making a huge difference in my stress level, along with being done with the challenging Honors Core sequence. It’s sunny out, which is way better than what it’s like in Seattle right now. So I really have nothing to complain about, other than the fact that I accidentally broke a plate by heating it in the oven, which I guess isn’t something I should do. I’ll keep you posted on my cooking adventures, having a kitchen for the first time…

Looks like a good time to go read some poetry before hanging out with friends for dinner!