Januarys on the hill are pretty special. Colby’s unique Jan Plan requires that students be on campus for three Januarys over the course of their four years here. Jan Plan is an opportunity for students to fill requirements (hence my exploration into very unfamiliar territory with “Volcanoes and Volcanology” my sophomore year), take new and quirky classes, or travel to California, India, or Cuba.
Because of swimming, I have been lucky enough to be on campus for all four of my Jan Plans, and although most people would not jump at the opportunity to be on a small college campus in the freezing cold tundra of Maine, there is a kind of beauty that exists here.
The sunset over Johnson Pond.
There is beauty amidst the snow drifts, the icy sidewalks, and the 4pm sunsets that is quite unlike anything else. Because the darkness comes so much earlier this time of year, it’s as if the light during the day is amplified.
“We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.” – Toni Morrison
It seemed only fitting that my voyage into the blogosphere should start with some wise and beautiful words from my girl Toni. In her ten wonderful novels, Morrison writes with emotional fierceness and lyrical honesty. I have always been a huge fan of her work, but after taking an author course on her this past semester, I only fell further head-over-heels in love.
I think there has always been something about the written word, about the act of writing something down as a record or an observation or a form of communication, that is particularly special to me. I like the tangibility of paper and pen and notebooks and books. And I like to write things down, including everything from a journal entry to a poem to a simple to-do list.
For some reason the idea of transferring this act of recording to the internet in the form of a blog was particularly terrifying to me. Maybe part of it was that it was public and maybe part of it was that I am quite technologically-challenged (hence part of the reason why I prefer Moleskine planners to high-tech iPhone calendars and “To-Do List” apps that are much more of this age). But after much encouraging I decided I might as well try it out because, in the words of everyone’s favorite HBO Girls, “all adventurous women do.” So here it goes world.