The Bug Geek

Insects. Doing Science. Other awesome, geeky stuff.

Day one: Good

Today was Good.  I accomplished everything I wanted to:

  • student card
  • stipend/TA payment paperwork
  • lab and locker keys
  • free photocopies
  • free coffee (my classy labmates have fresh beans, a grinder and coffee press – love!)
  • signed up for WHMIS training
  • set up my laptop to access the campus VPN 
  • toured the lab in which I’ll be TAing (skeletons! specimen jars! microscopes! petri dishes!  Glee!!!)
  • wandered through buildings looking for People or Things That Might Be Useful
  • met roughly eleventy-million admin-type people, all of whom were lovely and helpful when I randomly appeared in their offices saying “hi, what do YOU do?”  They provided useful information then sent me on my way with stuff: maps, checklists, names/emails of other People That Might Be Useful, and in one case, a really swanky stainless steel travel mug!  Woot! 
  • attended my first orientation session – also useful

All good, productive stuff.

I found today…well, surreal for lack of a better term.  It was foreign and wonderfully familiar all at once.    The environment is a new one, but the soul of the place is something I know well, and it’s very comfortable.    It was like finding a really comfy sweatshirt I’d forgotten I owned in the back of the closet, slipping it on, and feeling like, “yeah, that’s nice”.    A good fit, if you will.

I also found myself frequently reflecting upon the marked difference between Me, The-30-Year-Old-Student-on-Her-First-Day-of-School and Me, The-19-Year-Old-Student-on-Her-First-Day-of-School.  

Me-19 was utterly terrified.   Completely out her comfort zone.  Avoided social events at all costs (only for the first couple of weeks, I got over it).  Barely spoke.   Hid in her dorm room.  Came across as either: a) a snob, or; b) a weirdo, depending who you asked.

Me-30, today, was confident, friendly, outgoing, chatting with lots of new people, asking questions, and generally having a fantastic time.  

The difference is profound, and wonderful.

3 responses to “Day one: Good

  1. Rachel January 5, 2010 at 9:40 AM

    YAY! Crystal what a wonderful experience. I can totes see you walking into offices asking “What do YOU do?”. You’re awesome! Glad you had such a wonderful first day!

  2. Ted C. MacRae January 9, 2010 at 6:24 PM

    This sent me back to my days in grad school. What a wonderful lifestyle – it’s been a long time since I’ve missed it this badly!

  3. The Geek In Question January 9, 2010 at 8:29 PM

    I expected to be happy about returning to school and being a grad student again, but I was NOT expecting “bliss”. I’m on cloud 999 right now.

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