Oberlin Blogs

Oberlin Time

October 3, 2010

Megan Emberton ’12

Oberlin Time does not run like time does in the regular world.

The days are long.

They are full of classes, practicing, rehearsals, lessons, co-op meals and co-op hours, and hard-to-fit-in things like doing laundry or having a shower or homework or sleeping. Oberlin is full of very busy people who do a million things. You think YOU have a lot going on? Just talk to the person next to you about what they're doing that day. Events have a habit of constantly popping up. Picking and choosing is agony: Talks, recitals, readings, exhibitions, shows! Magically, everyone seems to squeeze some or most or all of them into their schedule. There should always be room for people, too. Factor in interesting conversations, running into friends, and spontaneous interactions with chatty strangers.

I take one thing at a time and try to get through my days systematically without forgetting anything (I do that a lot) or feeling bad for not practicing when I had that hour free (that also happens a lot). My planner is my friend. I am lost without it. To-do lists on sticky notes follow me everywhere. Getting to bed each night is delicious and almost always feels very much deserved.

End of Week 4.

But the weeks are short.

I've heard more than one person make this observation. It's particularly true at the beginning of the school year. First semester is whizz-bang-gone-before-you-know-it. Jam-packed days turn into weeks that fly by. One moment, it's Monday and I'm plodding forward, preparing to trudge through that weekly routine. Out of bed to class in King to class in the Con to teaching a lesson to practicing to my own lesson to my co-op to scrounge up some lunch-like leftovers to a couple hours that could be used for homework but will probably be used for sitting and thinking or reading to more teaching to dinner to evening rehearsal. At some point in the day, habit dictates that I will cut through Wilder Bowl to the mailroom in the vain hope that friends and family will have showered me (via my mailbox) with lengthy epistles and exciting parcels wrapped in brown paper and twine. Needless to say, my parcels usually appear to have been permanently waylaid and instead I receive things like reminders to pay my term bill. Then all of a sudden it's Friday, and Wilder Bowl is full of happy people and loud music. The days slip by, and the calendar tells me it's October already.

It's madness.

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