Whisper 2.09

Hi, Riley!

I’m here! I’m at college! And guess what? I’m staying in Mom’s old dorm!

And guess what else? All her old art is still on the walls and the walkway. I guess she’s like some famous celebrity-artist alumni, so they’re leaving up her art for posterity. I think it’s so awesome.

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So college is really cool.

At orientation, I met some of the other students.

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Man, you wouldn’t believe how cool some of them are.

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I met this one girl from Bridgeport. She has the greatest style. She was wearing cargo pants, layered tanks, and–get this–sandals. And a big classy hot-looking belt with a huge buckle. Wow.

It takes somebody really confident to pull of that look. And that’s Jaclyn. Confident and… well, you fill in the blanks!

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Riding home from orientation, it hit me: I’m here!

College is all about discovering yourself, right? Or at least, that’s how I feel. You’ve already discovered yourself!

But me? I’m just figuring out who I am, what I’m all about. That’s the college experience.

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I guess my dorm mates are OK. OK, they’re weird! But heck. Who’s not weird?

This one guy was dressed like some sifu, and he sat next to me at supper. Didn’t say a word. Just sat there, with a concentrated look on his face. I asked him if he was meditating, and he mumbled something, and then dove into his tofu dog. Oh, boy. People are strange.

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After supper, I got a phone call and it was some guy inviting me to a party! I hadn’t even met the guy! But get this! He knew Mom!

His name was Mahmoud something, and he’d actually gone to school with Mom. He never left town, even after graduating. Still lives in the same frat he lived in back when he was a student. I was so tempted to go, just to meet someone who had that connection with Mom.

But I was so tired. And I had classes early the next day. So, I declined.

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Oh! Guess what? I’m even staying in Mom’s old room! I’m using her easel and sleeping in her bed! It’s sort of weird, but also…. Well. I guess you could say that it comforts me. I mean, I don’t feel so alone, and I don’t miss you and everybody so much when I feel Mom all around me like that.

Do you think it’s funny that connections are so important to me?

I mean, I’m always acting so independent and everything. But Riley, I’m not really independent. It’s just that I’ve got you and everybody at home supporting me, and that makes me feel like I can conquer the world.

But actually, sometimes, when it’s late at night, and no one’s looking, and I’m all alone, I feel sort of… not really lost, but sort of alone. I guess that’s why I wanted you to come with me, so I could keep pretending to be brave.

Don’t worry! I’m not guilt-tripping you! I’m glad for you that you did what you want.

It’s just that I’m also really, really grateful that I get to sleep in Mom’s old room because it makes me feel a little less like a bunny in a basket dropped on somebody’s doorstep twenty years ago…

Anyway. Enough of that.

So I woke up super early on my first day of classes. I was so excited. It was pouring down rain, which made me so happy since it felt like home, only warmer, and then I raced to my class.

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Class was cool. The prof is from Champs Les Sims, and he talks with a really strong accent. I felt like raising my hand and asking, “Ou est la fromage, c’est vous plais?” LOL! But I didn’t. I refrained. Because, you know. Manners.

I’m trying really hard to make a good impression on all my professors. Plus, it’s interesting. Did you know that Cézanne strove not to copy nature, but to recreate it, trying to produce “a harmony parallel to nature?” I think that’s awesome. It answers something I always wondered about, which is, now that we have photography, what’s the purpose of painting? And this gave me insight into the answer.

I’ve got a little bit of time in between classes, so I thought more about that while I was waiting for the next class to start.

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I’m taking such a full load that Mondays and Wednesdays are packed. I just go from class to class with, like I said, a little break in between to digest the material from one lecture before cramming in the stuff from the next.

Tuesday, I’ve just got a single class in the lecture hall, but the first Tuesday, I was so tired that I slept right up until class.

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At least I didn’t sleep through the lecture like some people!

I was so focused on taking notes. I want to remember everything!

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After the lecture, though, guess what? I got another phone call from another person who’d gone to school with Mom! She invited me to a party, too. Can you believe it? I was so surprised.

And you know what? This party, I’m going to. I want to meet this person who says she knew Mom back when they were both crazy rebels and anarchists. Did you know Mom was an anarchist? I didn’t either! I wonder if it’s true…

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Well, I’d better stop writing if I’m gonna make it to that party. Man, I miss you so much!

Did you make the special beef food for Zoey and Roxy? Give them lots of pets and snuggles from me. Tell Patches and Bo that I miss them and that I hope they’re not giving you a hard time.

And when you write, be sure to fill me in on everything that’s going on with you! I can’t stand not being there to hear everything right from your own lips as soon as it happens. Of course, it’s not like you ever did share all your secrets with me, you rascal!

Anyway, love you lots. Miss you and the fam.

Be good. Have fun.

Dang, I really better go or I’ll be late for that party.

OK.

Bye.

Love you lots,

Mari

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