The end of summer, travel season, and other musings
November 4, 2009
Farah Emeka ’97
Well, summer is definitely over and winter is slowly showing its ugly face. Since fall is my favorite season, I always miss the leaves when they fall completely off of the trees. Fall is such a beautiful time of the year, especially here in Oberlin. The colors are so vibrant that on a crisp sunny fall day walking on campus you just find yourself happy to be alive. I don't get to witness the entire fall season in Oberlin, because the fall also marks travel season for admissions counselors. So far, I've spent 23 days on the road. I must say that I'm a little travel weary because I did a lot of summer vacation travel.
This summer I went to Los Angeles to see my little brother graduate from college. I went to Whitman College to participate in a special program for college-bound First Nation (Native American) and Native Hawaiian students. It was my first time in that part of the state of Washington even though I lived in Seattle for 8 years. It was a wonderful experience. Of course I met 3 Obies while I was there; all were on staff at Whitman. One of them was actually wearing an Oberlin t-shirt, proudly, I might add. I also went to Charleston, West Virginia, and back to Washington state and Oregon, where I hiked up Black Butte mountain with my entire family. Mind you, my 6-year-old son led the pack up and down the mountain... no sweat. And of course, what did I find at the top of Black Butte mountain?--well... crazy aggressive chipmunks and a fellow Obie. As it turns out my brother-in-law spotted a woman wearing an Oberlin hat and when he asked about it, she introduced her daughter who had attended Oberlin around the same time I did. I couldn't believe it, but then again I could; of course Obies climb mountains all over the world. After returning from that trip west, I then proceeded to drive to Columbus to sit for the Ohio bar and then drive to Chicago to pick up my children, who were staying with my mother. Whew!!!! Ooops and I almost forgot the highlight of my summer--a weekend cruise to the Bahamas with none other than my closest friends from Oberlin! I actually shared a cabin with my roommate from my second year at Oberlin. We had a great time, just us ladies. So with all of that being said, I guess you can understand my travel weariness.
Nonetheless, I've met many great prospective students on the road in St. Louis, Minneapolis, St. Paul, and Chicago. I've chatted with groups as small as 2 students and as large as 30 at schools all over the Midwest. The highlight was when I was manning a table at the 100 Black Men of Chicago fair and Mayor Daley walked by my table with a huge entourage of press and other interested fairgoers. The fair was a great way for the Mayor to showcase the great accomplishments of Chicago's teens after such a violent summer and fall. My final trip of the season will include visits to Milwaukee and Madison in Wisconsin. I'll be happy to wrap up travel season, but I look forward to meeting the students in Wisconsin.
All in all, I believe I am well suited for travel since I do so much of it in my "free" time. I really like to get out and experience different parts of the country and the world for that matter. How very Obie!