Life got a little exciting since I last posted. But I have been making mental and physical notes for blog posts, so I guess I’ll just post a bunch of things at the same time. They aren’t exactly travel blogs in the traditional sense, but hopefully they’ll be vaguely interesting to people…
I spent last weekend back at Mount Holyoke for our 2-year reunions. Mount Holyoke has a big sister-little sister scheme, where you get a big sister from the class two years above you, to mentor you and look after you and things, so since reunions are the same weekend as graduation we get to go back and watch our little sisters graduate. And we get to see all our friends and it is just lovely.
Maybe I look back on my time at MHC with rose tinted glasses, but I think it really was one of the happiest years of my life, and it radically changed who I am and how I see myself and how I look at the world, so going back was amazing and emotional and fantastic. It probably doesn’t help that it’s much more acceptable to have emotions in America, and they go out of their way to make people have emotions, but I went a little mental while I was back. It literally got to the stage where I was almost in tears from using my one card to swipe myself into the dorm I was staying in. It was super super happy.
One of the best things I did while I was there was go to one of the back to school classes that were put on for reunion attendees, which was on Mount Holyoke songs and traditions. It was led by this amazing MHC alum who graduated in 1944 and had a little half sized guitar and sang songs with us. Apparently back in the day each dorm had a song leader and they would all come together once a week and sing songs together, and they had special songs to say thank you to people, or to recognise someone who had done something really good. It was kind of brilliant. We sang a lot of songs about find boyfriends, and being drunk, and mocking other seven sisters students, as well as the adorable ones about loving other people in your dorm, and some really lovely nostalgic type songs about the MHC campus. It was also really interesting to talk to the other alums who were at reunions about how they saw Mount Holyoke students and other five college students.
It was just very special, and not something I could imagine happening at many places other than Mount Holyoke. I suppose Mount Holyoke is a special place, and one I am very very honoured and proud that I got to be a part of, even though it was for a short period of time. Being part of Mount Holyoke feels almost like being part of a family. Maybe this is something you get at any smaller university, but I guess because the traditions at Mount Holyoke are so strong, with Elfing and Big Sisters and Mountain Day and Pangy Day and J Show and Laurel Parade and Canoe Sing, things that have been happening for over 100 years, that you have a link with other alums in a weird way.
This was also obvious when I stayed at my friends’ house the night before reunions. They live in a flat which they rent from a Mount Holyoke Alum class of ’62. They don’t know this lady, but she took them into her home (the flat is at the top of her house). What was also lovely is that this lady sees her first year roommates every couple of months to spend some time together. Recently they had bought Ukuleles, and so I went down and played with them and chatted with them. It was so lovely. Isn’t it amazing how music brings people together?