Now before I tell you guys what could be the funniest story you’ll have heard all week, I want y’all to know that at the time that this happened I was new to the place. I was young and I was foolish, but aren’t we all? I mean let’s take a step back and put ourselves in my shoes for a second. I am a seven year old child (at least on the inside) who shouldn’t be allowed to walk outside by myself. Now I got mistakenly dumped at a new school half a world away from home (someone definitely should be blamed for this). I did not have that many friends and had not toured the school prior to matriculation.
This story begins, as many do, with my alarm clock ringing at 7.00 o’clock in the morning. I got up and lazily took a shower before going to my 8.00 o’clock English class. My professor introduced himself, had us do one of those old ice-breakers before giving us an overview of what his course would be about.
So I leave my class and head on out to breakfast where I have my taste of some of that chicken sausage patty. (Honestly guys, whoever discovered this is a genius, God bless that fortunate soul.) I leave the dining hall a good thirty minutes before my next class because Mother taught me to be a good lad, and check my schedule for where I’ll be heading next.
Schedule says I should be heading to the computer lab for my intro to Comp Science lab session.
I check where the class is. My schedule says boldly and in all caps TBD.
I’m not one for abbreviations, so I had no idea what TBD meant. I thought it was the name of one of the halls here at Tufts. I mean it makes perfect sense right? So I pull out a map of Tufts from my bag and thoroughly look for the hall TBD.
I don’t need to tell you that TBD hall didn’t exist. I put the map away and decided to look it up on google maps. The only result that shows up with the slightest bit of sense is an Art Gallery in New York, but I know for a fact that that’s not where the class is. I scratch my scalp for a while. There has to be someone that knows where the hall, so I do the one thing that I shouldn’t have done. I ask random stranger walking down the road.
“Excuse me, do you know where TBD hall is?” I go. No one seems to have any clue where this hall is. They must all be freshmen like I am. I wonder if the other people in my lab class have any luck finding the class. I probably should have made an effort to know people back then. I do all I can do at the moment, I keep asking random strangers hoping I’ll get lucky.
“You could go to the library help desk, they’ll be able to help you,” a kindhearted stranger says to me. I put her words to the back of my mind as I ask other strangers if they can help me. I was now twenty minutes late for class.
I get a stroke of luck, someone I actually know walks my way. I smile in relief.
“Do you know where TBD hall is?”
“No, I’ve never heard of it. Do you have class there?”
“Ooh, have you looked it up on the map? … How about on google maps?”
“Okay, I have time, I could help you ask around.”
We spend the better part of five minutes asking random passersby before considering the possibility that TBD might not exist. I decide to let my friend go and I head on to the library like I should have.
I make my way to the library and the lady at the front desk asks me so cheerfully what I am looking for. I tell her I’m supposed to have class at TBD hall and she looks it up in her map. She realizes that it doesn’t exist. Out of nowhere, Annie, a friend of mine, nudges me on the shoulder and asks me what’s got my insides all tangled up in a knot. I tell her all about my day, and mid-narration, I remember bumping into another person I had met earlier walking to Halligan for their comp lab.
I suddenly recollect my teacher saying that labs would be at Halligan hall. I had earlier taken her words to mean nothing, because it was my thinking that my schedule already said where to meet. I now think TBD could have been code for something, and the words come floating from my schedule in dazzling glory, ‘TO BE DETERMINED!’
It all makes perfect sense to me now. I dash out of the library and head to a lab that I am now forty five minutes late for. I race into the room in time for my TA to take notice of me. I sit at one of the computers and quickly ask what was going on during the time I missed. Long story short, I got to complete the lab assignment in time, and all was well on this side of the horizon.
When I think about this story, I laugh at how childish I can get sometimes. No matter how hard I try to be a responsible adult, baby Ben finds his way in there and ruins everything for me. I can’t hold a straight face to save my life, when I see a tube of pringles, baby Ben wonders what it would be like to dive on it and smash it. When I look at the hill I have to climb to get to class every day, I wonder what skidding down it on a makeshift sledge would look like. When I go to bed every night, I wonder who thought it would be a good idea to send me to school by myself.
Truth is, half the time, I need an adult when baby Ben shows up. Now I have friends who do that, only yesterday a friend stopped me from falling and breaking my arm. That’s what I love most about my time thus far. I love that I have friends around me that can help me when I need help, like Chris who joined me in questioning random strangers (I actually forgot his name but let’s pretend it’s Chris), Annie who inadvertently helped remember where my class is, and Lexi and Favour who saved me from hurting myself pretty bad yesterday. They make up the Tufts that I love. I don’t mean to end this all in a cheesy way, but I’ll say it, I love them dearly.