The tap-tap of keyboards and the shuffling of notes and textbooks surround me as we progress through the day’s homework. The Metcalf Hall common room is almost always occupied in the late hours of the night by the familiar faces of my dormmates and friends, some working hard and others hardly working. It was here while I typed a research paper for my Community Health class that one of my friends spontaneously proposed a novel plan: a sunrise watch party. Who wouldn’t want to wake up at 6 am on a school night? Definitely not the Metcalf crew.
My alarm went off and I scrambled to reach my phone as to not disturb my two roommates who were sound asleep. Grabbing my sneakers, I slipped out of the dark room into the hallway to meet my fellow adventurers. The dawn light was beginning to permeate the windows and we scurried outside into the crisp fall air. “Hurry! We’re going to miss the fire sky!” someone yelled as we ran across the street and up the stairs to Tisch Library roof. Laughing and panting, we ran over to the edge of the rooftop courtyard that overlooks campus and the distant Boston skyline. The clouds were a lush orange and the already stunning leaves that peek above the city seemed to absorb the sky’s colors as well. Adjacent to the outlook is the top of another building that has a pattern of plants spelling out “TUFTS.” As I looked out on this breathtaking view, I had a moment of clarity and gratitude. Something that people don’t seem to tell you before you go to college is that it feels like summer camp for the first couple months. College is dynamic and intriguing, and subconsciously it felt like it was a limited time only gig. However, once you establish a routine, have developed groups of friends, and found your favorite study spaces and nooks, the novelty of it wears off. On this beautiful Monday morning as I looked upon the garden, the sunrise, and the buildings around us, I was surrounded by smiling faces and a new kind of familiarity. I thought to myself, “Wow, this is my life now. I live here, and I will for the next four years.”
I also realized that I wouldn’t rather be anywhere else.