Saturday, June 23, 2012

The only word to descibe today is "Wow"

We had a full schedule today, filled with Cornell hills, confusing maps, long orientations, and all-you-can-eat food. My day started at 7 AM; I wanted to get to know the campus, so I decided to do a self-guided, thirty minute jogging tour of the roads closest to the Statler Hotel. Last night, I reviewed the map of the campus; what I did not know, though, was that I was looking at the wrong starting road. It took me an extra five minutes this morning to figure out where I was, but eventually I got it. I stayed mainly on East Avenue, veering off occasionally to get a better view of the Human Ecology building (absolutely beautiful, by the way), the Labor Relations building, and the infamous ice skating rink at the top of the hill. Although I missed that extra hour of sleep, it was definitely worth it; running just adds extra magic to new places that I visit.
My room (1 of 4).
We all met down in the lobby at 9:00. Well, it was supposed to be 8:50, but the elevators were so swamped with summer college students that most of us had to wait for three or four elevators to pass before we finally could squeeze into one. Mr. Chan-Law then drove us to our respective dorms to check-in: Eric Wang, Eric Wilson, Frank, and I are all in the Donlon Hall, while Calvin is in Balch, and Alex is in Risley. Check-in went by very quickly (although Calvin’s file was somehow lost, and they did not place him until after breakfast), and I went to my new room to unpack. My roommate had gotten there before me and left, but I knew she was a fellow Hotelie because she had Isadore Sharp’s book lying on her desk. The room was hot, so I tried to unpack quickly so I could explore a little and go eat at the Robert Purcell Community Center. They did have a gluten-free section, but it was very limited (Udi’s Bread, packaged cookies, and inedible brownies), but I was able to eat the fruit and salad. Mrs. Kronenberg also met with us, as did the summer college director, Abby Eller. From brunch, we decided to check out each other’s rooms and compare. Eric didn’t have a roommate, so he has an extra bed; Calvin does have a roommate, but they get their own private bathroom (probably the best room to have); and Alex has a homey single, but it smelled pretty bad. In fact, all of our rooms smelled bad; it makes me wonder if even college students in dorms live in squalor.
My own desk, pre-messiness (2 of 4).
My bed is the yellow one (3 of 4).
The view of other dormitories (4 of 4).
Student completely filled Bailey Hall!
We finally had killed enough time, so we caught the shuttle to Bailey Hall to hear the welcome speech by Abby and the Dean’s Convocation. Each group was then dismissed by program to meet their professors and get an idea of what the next three weeks would be like. Reneta and Mark, the Hotel Management instructors, seem very nice. The only surprise I received during their speech was that we had to dress professional casual (in the e-mail from months back, it said that during lectures, we could just stick to casual). Basically, it means no shoulders showing, and we must keep the shorts at a reasonable length. I had to ask my mom to send my some sweaters that I could wear in class, but for the next few days I will manage (it’s too bad though; 90-degree weather, three tank tops, and few chances to wear them!).

You scream, I scream, we all screamed for ice cream!
I headed back to my dorm with Eric Wang and Frank afterwards, and decided to do some much-needed laundry. I didn’t know where the facilities were though, so I went to find the nearest staff, and accidentally met my roommate on the way. She (Kathleen) is from Shanghai, but has been studying in the U.S. for the past three years. She is really nice, and I had dinner with her and friend Lynn. They are also with a special program through China which is supposed to prepare them specifically for Cornell. Kathleen and I did our laundry together and hung out at the 7:30 PM ice cream social we had later. I met more of her Chinese group (most of whom she had never met before either), as well as some other students, including a girl (Karina) from Indonesia.
The guys during the ice cream social.
The day was not over yet. At 9:30 PM, we had a mandatory floor meeting in for each dorm; ours lasted until 11! At the end, they had us make name tags for our doors with colored-in pictures from Disney movies of our choice (I have the three mice from “Cinderella”). At midnight, we also all had to go down for the nightly check-in; Sunday through Thursday, curfew is at 11, while Friday and Saturday, it is at 12. I have just had time to write my blog; today was so busy, and tomorrow will be similar, though with fewer events. It was tiring, but really fun.

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