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Travel Woes… Again

RobertBy the time you read this, I will be home in Oregon. Had I posted the blog I was originally writing, it would have been a very bad note to end my Wabash blogging experience on (unless I decide to do this freelance).

The day started off fine. I put the last of my stuff in storage, watched a couple episodes of Fullmetal Alchemist (which is pretty cool, but not as cool as Avatar) and then got to the airport nice and early. I helped myself to a burger at Champp’s (not fine dining, but not a bad place for lunch) and then made my way to the gate.

That’s when things started to go wrong. Our flight was delayed by about an hour, and as I had a connection to make out of Denver that is a very bad thing for me. So I started panicking, and dreading the possibility of spending a night in Denver (I’ve got relatives there, but it still feels like I’ve fallen short), and I think I might have gone through the five stages of grief while waiting… or maybe I’m just exaggerating due to lack of sleep. Whatever.

But then, a light in the darkness appeared; the people at the front desk said that the flight to Portland would be held so people making a connection could get on. With that weight lifted off my shoulders, I was a much more cheery and personable person, and chatted up a few of the other passengers who were going through the same plight as me (some with less success).

This also marks the first time I have ever seen someone really flip out at the people at the desk. So, this couple was going to be on the flight to Denver, but due to the delays they decided to reroute their plans. There was a snafu and they would have gotten separated, and by the time they tried to get it changed the airline (Frontier, by the way) had closed everything down. The guy did not take this very well, and after some shouting he and his wife stormed off. It was both amusing and terrifying at the same time… kind of like a car crash.

Anyway, I got onto the flight to Denver, and to my further luck The LEGO Movie was one of the options for in-flight entertainment. So…

Everything is Awesome! /Everything is cool when you’re part of the team! / Everything is Awesome! / When you’re living your dreams!

During the movie, our plane happened to pass over a thunderstorm. I consider myself a religious person, and seeing a thunderstorm in general is enough to put the fear of God in you. Seeing it from above is a whole different level of awe-inspiring, and I could not help but feel that if God wanted, He could have struck us down with ease.

But God is on our side, and we can’t lose because we are very pretty.

And I think He was on my side. When we landed, I had less than five or so minutes to run down to my next plane. When I got there I was out of breath, my heart was beating really fast, and I couldn’t feel my legs. To top it off, I got stuck next to a 13 month old baby, although by the time I wrote this he seemed very peaceful. Go him.

And my nemesis the tray table strikes again. Frontier does have tray tables that slide out, but they don’t slide out enough and the actual tray is small (I can’t tell if it’s Delta small, but it’s still pretty darn small). My computer has no traction, so as I write this I have to work to make sure that it doesn’t slide around too much (no small task as we hit a bad batch of turbulence when I wrote this).

I shouldn’t complain about tray tables or turbulence or delays (or even babies for that matter). I’m going home, and I’ll be able to sleep in my own bed for the next three months. I’ve still got some work to do in general, but for now I don’t have to worry about the pressures of Wabash. I have to say that I look forward to having less pressure placed upon me. I need it, and I think all the students and faculty at Wabash need it.

So for real this time, this is my last blog post. Thank you for listening to my rants, and I thank Wabash for the opportunity to express these rants.

Dorkstock

RobertI wanted to post this Sunday, but finals caught up with me and I had to write a few papers.

Anyway, Saturday was a great day. I’ve been a bit stressed because of some things going on in class that I won’t bore you with, so Friday night and Saturday were great for stress relieving. Friday was good because I found out that The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly is on Netflix, so that helped take my mind off things for a bit. Saturday was great because Dorkstock.

Like Dorkapalooza, Dorkstock is a larger scale event that the Dork Club participates in at the end of the year just before finals. It’s a time where we can come together and play a bunch of games to relax and not worry about finals, even if only for a few hours.

Anyway, the day began around 12. I spent a bit of time observing and eating some food before actually playing a game. Unfortunately, no one else brought 40K stuff, so my Space Marines did not get a chance to do anything last night. However, I did look to other games to pass the time, and I did play a few good games (didn’t win most of them, but that’s not the point).

Probably the game I played the most last night was Formula D. I think I mentioned this game in a previous blog post, but as a refresher Formula D is a game where you control a race car and race other people around the track. I seem to be a bit too cautious of a driver, as downshifting into lower gears always sees me get into the back of the pack (or even causes me to crash… it happened). And somehow Professor Morillo’s daughter is a god at this game, pulling so far ahead that the others can never keep up. It’s a pretty fun game, and very amusing to watch people crash (but then when isn’t it?)

I'm the car in yellow (what isn't shown is me later taking a turn too fast and crashing)

I’m the car in yellow (what isn’t shown is me later taking a turn too fast and crashing)

As the night went on, I got a chance to play another game I have been looking forward to playing for some time (some time being when we got it a few months ago). That game is Ikusa, a Risk/Axis and Allies hybrid where you command one of five warring factions in Feudal Japan. The goal is to kill off the other players’ Daimyos and conquer Japan, and you do that by building armies of samurai and peasant spearmen and gunmen, and hiring the occasional ninja to go assassinate someone. My forces were somewhat scattered across the board, but I did manage to get a nice concentration of power in the northeast. From there, I moved south and west, and on my last turn I managed to kill two Daimyos and secure a nice chunk of land. We called it quits soon after on account of some of the other guys wanting to play Diplomacy (which I highlighted in an earlier blog post) so I, Professor Morillo, his daughter, Professor Porter and one of my Brothers sat down for one last Formula D race. I came in third on account of blowing up my Brother with mind bullets (actually an engine malfunction, but mind bullets sounds cooler) and Professor Porter hitting the wreckage and crashing, and once again Morillo’s daughter swept the race.

War in Feudal Japan, so much fun! (I'm Orange; you can see my army in the northeast)

War in Feudal Japan, so much fun! (I’m Orange; you can see my army in the northeast)

Things were dying down, and as some of the others left I sat down for a small scale Star Wars RPG. Our mission was to infiltrate an Imperial base for a little sabotage, and things went well until one of the Imperials called for backup on account of there being dead bodies in the trash compactor (long story). Our group quickly got involved in a firefight with Stormtroopers and Imperial soldiers, and I managed to take out a few with only a few small wounds to worry about (although there was some cheating; due to lack of planning on behalf of one of my squadmates I got shot, a lot, and should have died had Porter not said that I was merely “stunned and ducking behind cover). By then it was bout midnight, so I decided to call it a day and go home to get some sleep.

I am incredibly thankful that Wabash has groups like the Dork Club. Without it, I probably would have been panicking with stress for the past few days, not to mention a bit more grouchy over the course of the school year due to a lack of some way for me to relieve my stress. And I’m sure this isn’t exclusive to Dork Club; there are other groups here at Wabash that can be just as effective at relieving stress, and I encourage all incoming student to get involved in something they love to do so that they can relax for a few hours and not have to worry about classes and papers.

Also, as this may very well be my last blog post of the year (I say may because the time slots are a little weird. I might give you another travel log), I want to thank you all who have read my blog and followed my Wabash journey. I might not know most of you, but I feel happy that I have had the chance to reach out to others and show them just what Wabash has to offer.

A Look Back

AudieIt’s been a long first year of college. I’ve been tested mentally, physically, and emotionally at times on this small campus. I’ve met people I can’t imagine going a summer without, and I’ve met people that things can only get better with. I’ve tasted potential I didn’t see in myself with running, and I’ve also seen just how much I am my own enemy in running. I’ve seen the brotherhood I’ve always looked for in the miles on roads with my teammates, and the long weeks with my brothers. I’ve been made to think critically of the conservative values I’ve grown up with, and change them to traditional values. Little bit opposite then how most college students become more liberal. I’ve seen the stresses of a Wabash education, athletics, and fraternity pledgeship. Similarly I have seen the fruits of many of these labors, a more educated mind, and Socratic Method of looking at life’s questions. I came here a Biology Major, and I will enter my sophomore year as a Classical Studies Major and Religion Minor. After a long year, which would take too long to entirely look back on, I only have a summer of running, work, and reading standing between myself and another semester under her scarlet banner.