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Read This If You Miss Campus

Bwog reminisces about moments on campus.

Maybe once we were homesick for our hometowns, but now as the quarantines and stay-at-home orders really set in, we become dorm-sick. Columbia-sick. New-York-sick. Here are some things Bwog misses, and maybe some things you miss too.

People

I miss breakfast at Hewitt with all my friends, our lively conversations over half-cooked waffles and iced coffee. Always sitting at the tall tables on the second room, always slightly late although we promised we would be on time.

I miss solving problem sets together with my friends. Doing it alone is so dreary and difficult.

I miss hanging out with my friend group and spending way too long talking and joking around instead of actually doing homework. Our floor lounge was really hard to escape from because we would be having way too much fun, so conversations sometimes ended around midnight.

I miss being able to see my girlfriend every day.

I miss my roommate, with her expensive perfume and extensive phone calls. Her accent, the way English rolled off her tongue all sing-song and beautiful. Her laughter and weird one-liners, as she walked out the door to yet another sushi place.

I miss my roommate. I miss sharing my food with him, listening to his music all night, hugging each other whenever we see each other on campus as if we didn’t get ready together a few hours ago, getting groceries for each other, checking in with each other often (with additional hugs), and just his brilliant presence in general.

I miss hearing my roommate have entire conversations with himself when he sleeps.

I miss my suitemates coming into my room at night when they are finally done with their extremely long and exhausting days just to say goodnight and give me a forehead kiss.

I miss unexpected deep 2:00 am 1020 conversations with friends of friends of friends, classmates from semesters past, and other stranger-adjacent people.

I miss CUMB rehearsals and playing at games and being surrounded by a community of people who made me smile for the first time in months.

Not to get too meta, but I miss seeing everyone in Bwog in person. This goes for any club, but Zoom sessions will never be the same as all sitting cramped and crowded in a too-small room, all talking over each other and making jokes.

 

Places

I miss the awkward silences of class, the small talks, the anonymity of campus. Feeling both like a part of a whole and like the last person on earth.

I miss going to Milstein after class and spreading all of my notebooks and pens and stuff out to do my work and study.

I miss walking back from my history class at 5:30 pm when the trees would be lit on College Walk and I would be blasting whatever song was stuck in my head.

I miss sitting on Low Steps really late at night with all my friends! We would bring a speaker and stare at Butler for a long time as we huddle together and have one group conversation.

I miss going to Postcrypt late and missing all the good acts, ending my Saturday nights eating French fries and drinking milkshakes at JJs, laughing with my friends.

I miss walking back from Knox at 7 pm on Thursdays. I used to complain a lot about it, but that really was the only time I could walk a fair distance by myself in total silence, which was a peaceful activity after a whole day of back-to-back classes. Walking back to campus felt like the light at the end of the tunnel because it represented the end of a really long week and the beginning of a new one.

I miss waking up on a Sunday morning (or early afternoon) and throwing on pajama pants and a dirty band tee so I can run to John Jay for breakfast.

I miss sitting on the dust-covered vinyl floor of my friend’s tiny dorm listening to old records and talking politics until the early hours of the morning, heat always on too high.

I miss the Pulitzer Joe. I miss swarming around the packed room looking for a table, asking a stranger if I can share with them, getting over-caffeinated and shaky from iced oat milk lattes

I miss being passive-aggressive when people hog the benches and machines at Dodge.

I miss being able to escape into another neighborhood (usually the Village or Williamsburg/Greenpoint) whenever I need to ~get away and clear my head~

 

Things

I miss the green smoothies at Hewitt, and the woman who made them, Gloria. She is an angel on this earth.

I miss treating myself to iced coffee from Peet’s after a particularly difficult exam or paper.

I miss the bagels from Wu & Nuss and Absolute. I would kill for a good bagel right now.

I miss my well-decorated dorm room. I had so much art on my walls, and notes I had gotten from my friends, and it really did feel like a home. When I moved to college, I expected to never have to live at home again, so I packed up everything. Now, all I have is bare walls and old bedsheets.

I miss my view. All year I watched the leaves of Riverside Park change with the outfits of the dogs and joggers, and I was so excited to finally see everything bloom.

I miss beyond burgers at JJs.

I miss eating breakfast at Ferris on Friday mornings. Their scrambled eggs are so good.

I miss the lights I had on the wall of my dorm – a string of small teal lanterns that connected to my roommate’s string of multicolored oversized Christmas lights. We bought these together on move-in day and they were my favorite part of our room.

I miss the swings in Riverside Park near 112th. I spent so many warm nights there watching the rats and raccoons scurry by and leaning backward while swinging so I could see the lovely old apartment buildings behind me. I think at this point I have made almost all of my friends come with me, and all of them have loved it. It was finally getting warm enough to swing on my way home from class in the early evening.

I miss being able to get anywhere and everywhere using the subway. I loved going downtown with my friends every once in a while to explore.

I miss the noise of the city.

 

Experiences

As strange as it may sound, I miss my 8:40 U Writing class. I miss my morning walk across campus and the golden glimmering of the sun on Low, the fog my breath made in the air and the crispy frosty look of the Butler lawns. Every morning, before the professor made it to class, the class would slowly filter in and silently commiserate about our current situation. There would be quiet breakfast munching and sips of coffee as we all gently woke up. Just about nothing feels more bonding than sharing those small moments together.

I miss getting drunk in my friends’ rooms, singing and dancing until we couldn’t anymore, then sharing the bed as we told each other stories of our pasts.

I miss the ritual of getting ready to go to a party with my suitemates: borrowing each other’s clothes, hyping ourselves up with music, helping each other decide on earrings, and taking bathroom mirror selfies. I miss trying to keep up with their longs legs on the way there, the nervous excitement once we split up and started talking to other people, and meeting up again to get food (usually Roti Roll) on the way home.

I miss sitting at Milstein across from a friend, diligently studying for hours, until she taps my foot and half-whispers “Wanna get lunch?”. And then we would walk to John Jay, chatting about a million things and in the end, we would end up discussing life and religion and love and death, as the dining hall emptied.

I miss the walk to work, the cold morning air hitting my cheeks and wind blowing through my hair.  There’s something really excellent about feeling like another New Yorker with “places to be”– headphones in and moving at a ridiculous pace.

I miss sitting on my windowsill on Monday evenings before my roommate got back from class, looking out at Broadway, seeing the colors of the sunset reflected on the windows of Dodge and watching people on the street.  Sometimes, if the light was right, I could see people painting in the studios across the street.  It wasn’t the most comfortable place to sit, but it was peaceful.

I miss being independent and having a space that was totally my own to explore and exist.

Image via Bwarchives

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1 Comment

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Nice post.

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