Sometimes, you see the sunrise because you’re a productive human being and woke up early. Sometimes, you see it as it greets you on the stumble home from Butler. Bwog, inspired by
sleep deprivation and stress the vibrant fall images on campus, brings you this first-hand account.
The birds are the first things I hear as I unplug my headphones and pack up my backpack after a long night in the reference room. I stumble down the stairs and out the door, realizing it’s the first time I’ve seen the sun in a few days (when I sleep, I sleep late. Really late). Reaching into my pocket, I realize that my quasi hourly smoke breaks have exhausted my pack, so I decide to walk to Duane Reade to replenish my stocks in celebration of finally finishing that fucking
paper reading writing exercise whatever the hell I was up doing. Handing over my cash and ID (still not sure why it gets inspected so thoroughly, who fakes an under-21?), I blearily thank the cashier and wish her a good morning, noting on the way back to campus that even the halal guy on 115th near Schapiro has called it a night.
I walk through the 116th gates and watch the sun rise over College Walk, reminding myself that campus is gorgeous and not just an endless series of bricks to trip over and tourists to dodge when sprinting to class. My head is buzzing and my legs are stiff from sitting so long but I’m a hero and a victor and I fucking made it, damn it. Facilities hasn’t had a chance to clear the leaves from the walkways yet, so I slide my feet through them and happily crunch my way toward Amsterdam. While walking past the rose-bathed facade of St. John the Divine I decided that it would be a good idea to take pictures on my dying iPhone in Morningside Park, so I march past my room in the LLC with the resolve that I would let no all-nighter go un-Instagrammed.
Narrowly avoiding a jogger, I cross the street and hop up on the bench overlooking the park, hoping that I don’t drop my phone/fall off the bench and down the hill. Worth it, I think, snapping photos and looking around the park. The trees are dusted with shades of orange and gold and I can see Harlem vendors opening up their shops in the distance. I light a cigarette and watch the smoke curl in the still condensed air, fading into pastel shades of red and pink.
My shaking legs win out and I head back toward my room, shuffling through more leaves as I walk back through the gates. I hand the security guard at the desk the wrong ID a couple of times, sleepily mumble an apology, and triumphantly emerge from the elevator back into my room. Pulling off my backpack and jeans I jump into bed and blissfully relax…until my alarm goes off and I have to finish the reading for my 10:10 class.