Sunday, July 12, 2015

Are You From Tennessee?

Our last picture all together until we leave!
Today was completely jam packed. Jenny tried to let us sleep in a little because she knew that we would have very little time to sleep in over the next few days. We met for brunch, and it would be the last meal that we have together for the next three weeks. There was a fairly highly rated place called "Biscuit Love" that had been recommended to us, so we had the hotel shuttle take us over. None of us were keen to stand in the sun for the next half hour, so we sort of abandoned Jenny and went to the Urban Outfitters we had seen on the way there, throwing out promises that we would be back before it was time to order. When we arrived there, I browsed for a bit, pointed out the price disparity between the male and female apparel, and went over to look at the accessories instead. There I found Gwennie and Katherine with both fists full of friendship bracelets, digging through to find the best ones so everyone in the cohort could have something to bring us together. We paid and then rushed back to Biscuit Love, where Jenny was almost at the front of the line. 

It lived up to my expectations.
Our last meal together was kind of quiet, as everyone was probably nervous about the upcoming check-in, and also probably wiped out from the almost constant traveling over the last five days. Right after, we had a shuttle take us to the Parthenon, and our driver apparently is in a punk band called "Secret Stuff" that is hoping to get signed soon. Maybe I was just driven by someone on the edge of stardom? Who knows. We finally made it to the Parthenon, and I rushed inside and zipped up the stairs to see the replica of Athena Parthenos. I have loved mythology since I was a little kid, and I have never been to Greece, so this was something I had wanted to do since finding out that I would be coming to Nashville. 

The bottom floor of the museum was various types of art, and as I wandered through the halls I found a gorgeous painting called Autumn in the Catskills. It was so intricate and detailed that felt like if I leaned forward far enough, I would fall right into the painting. 

We made our way back to the hotel, stopping by the Rite Aid to pick up some necessities. Then we picked our luggage up from the hotel and piled into a taxi that actually got lost on the way to Hank Ingram House. We made it eventually, since Katherine saved the day by pulling out the itinerary  that Don gave us. I have no clue how he manages to think of everything. 

After our speedy check in, I made it up to my floor to meet my roommate and settle into the room. I walked in to a lot of hustle and bustle as Sofi and her mother were racing to put away all of the clothes. They are both so sweet! They kept on asking if they could help me in any way, and after I spent a few minutes trying to put the bed-sheet on the mattress, I  acquiesced. Sofi is from Florida, and is also doing Medicine, Health and Society. She laughed at all of my terrible jokes, so she pretty much automatically amazing.  After a game of Uno in the commons that eventually expanded out to 15 girls, we divided into our proctor groups. Proctor groups are made up of ten girls and a proctor, who is the person to go to when we have any issues, or just need someone to talk to. I can see myself getting close with these girls really easily, as all of them were incredibly friendly and open. We played name games, as well a few games that I recognized from theatre just within our proctor group, but it eventually expanded out to all of the V house girls. 

From there, we went to the opening ceremony, which essentially had a theme of "Cheesy but also fun" Each house had a themed video that introduced the proctors, and the best one was clearly the V House one, where the proctors were exhibited as dinosaurs by a "tour guide" that went around Hank Ingram. I really wanted to find it so that I could link to it here, but alas, it is nowhere to be found. We listened to the directors explain what was expected of us, and heard about the House Cup, where you win nothing but everlasting glory. We also built up our house spirit by learning house cheers. (We have two cheers. One is "V-E-L-O-C-I-RAPTORS!" and then a yell, and the other is one that I heard was popular last year from Chiamaka, (one of the other ILCers) that just goes "V house, the house" but I haven't heard that one quite yet.) 

Our first chance to get some points came in the form of a "person scavenger hunt" where a person from every proctor group runs into the center of a semicircle if what is called out applies to them. The person who arrives the fastest, or does it the best, wins two points towards the house cup. Only a few things applied to me so I didn't run up much, but I certainly did hustle for someone who was wearing flip-flops and a dress. We played until the sun went down, and then filed onto our house floors to have a quick house meeting where the proctors reintroduced themselves and we worked on our cheer. I'm proud to say that I used the breathing technique that I've picked up from a few years of theatre well by projecting without ruining my throat. 

Soon after that, we had another meeting in our proctor groups, this one longer and more serious where we outlined our group expectations and had our Arete classes announced to us. I got improv  for my first week and boot camp for the second. I'm grateful for boot camp after all of the amazing (but fairly unhealthy) southern food I have been eating, but I can't help feeling like I will be really sore after the first few days. We received VSA shirts, hats and water bottles, and then marched off to bed. By the time Sofi and I got back to the room it was about 11 PM, so after brushing my teeth, changing and starting my blog, the bed was a welcome relief. Classes start tomorrow, and I can't wait!

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