Monday, August 18, 2008

The Difference

As I am edging up on 30 years old in a few more months, I am remembering the simple days of college and thinking how wonderful they were. Today I was reading a facebook note by one of our former BCM students who is now graduated and lives in South Bend. She just got engaged over the weekend to her boyfriend of three years, and their engagement story was long.

It came in five phases. And it had a title.

This guy had taken her on multiple fun, romantic, expensive, thoughtful dates, all in the expectation that they were leading up to the big ring on her hand. I remember days like that. Days when your dates are spontaneous. You just jump in the car, and next thing you know, you are three hours away from home. Or there is a casual blanket picnic set up under a tree. Or an anticipated day at the amusement park to be followed by dinner out. And you thought your boyfriend was the dreamiest.

Paul was very romantic in college. In fact, I often had to reel him back in a bit just to keep my head from drowning in the saccharin-y sweetness of it all. Don't get me wrong...he is still incredibly thoughtful and romantic. It just has to be planned much more ahead of time, and swinging by Memaw and Papa's is always included in the mix.

I'm just saying the dating life changes.

All of that aside, I made a little trip to my alma mater today. We are having a "Ten-ish Year Reunion" with all of our college friends from Campus Crusade next weekend. I have been majorly looking forward to this. Although we still keep in touch with a lot of them, this will be one weekend to pretend that we are still there. We are going to have a Crusade meeting like we did then, in the same room, with the same speaker, singing the same worship songs. Oh, but we have to drop our kids off with the babysitters first. Then we can pretend. And a couple of the girls are still nursing their babies, so they get to pretend with kids at the teat. Yeah, I said teat.

So today I had to go to campus to get a paper signed to reserve the room we need to use. I think classes started today at good ol' Indiana State University (for me, it really was the way college was supposed to be). Oh, I know it is now "More. From day one." and it was that, too, but I liked the old slogan best. Because it isn't like any other school name ending in "university" couldn't have used that little ditty.

While on campus, I started to notice a few differences between me and the kids there. Well, first, it is that they were kids. I know they are supposed to be "students" but please. They are flat out babies. Difference #2 is that the girls had shorts on that barely covered their little booties. My shorts came to my knees. The fashionable "walking short" if you will. Difference #3 was that Abigail was with me. And I'm preeeeeetty sure she was not there for my college days. Although walking through campus is much more fun with her. She was extremely disappointed that the fountain was shut off, and she stopped to pick the little "apples" (ie, possibly poisonous berries) off the trees to hold in her hands (NOT eat). Difference #4 was the Commons, the hangout/eating area. It is much hipper-looking now, and has all new restaurants, including George's Cafe, which is amazing Mediterranean style food that was not there then. Difference #5 is the laptops. NOBODY had laptops when I was there. I made it the entire way through school without even my own computer in my dorm room. I just used the computer lab and it was fine. Dot matrix printers and all. Difference #6 is that I barely remember where any of the buildings were, and I had to ask directions to the building I was looking for. Which would not be a big deal, except that I worked for two years in college at the Admissions office and gave TOURS OF CAMPUS.

Other than that, it was all the same. It was familiar to walk on that campus and explain to Abigail that college is where big people go to school and that it is where Mommy and Daddy met. I showed her Hines Hall where I lived my junior year and said I had a bed and a bathroom and a closet there (dorm room would go right over her head). She said, "And a POOL?" I said, "Um, no. This is called a dorm, not a hotel."

Actually, it is called a residence hall. That is from my tour-giving days, to show that my brain has not completely turned to mush by motherhood and laundry.

Oh, and difference #7....I was not checked out by anyone, but they sure smiled at my cute kid. Which is fine. Really, it's fine.


nickmal said...

It is different, but you gotta love the changes! I'm taking a class for certification to administer local anesthesia this fall and it's offered online. It would have been difficult to manage if I had had to travel to Champaign all semester, but I'll just have to attend to labs in December, then look out I'm hoping to be Haiti bound with Dr. Lorre Webb : )

mccancek said...

How fun to reminisce about the "old" days!!! It's something I don't even think about that often... all caught up in my life now.. I mean I think of you and other friends often, but not ISU per se... good times, makes me kinda sad and happy all at the same time!:) Love you Ames!

bcmguy said...

I check you out every day!