Archive for the ‘School’ Category

Last summer, while braving the tribulations of bottle-feeding fawns and fostering litters of opossums, I had a motto of sorts. It went something like this:

“Do what scares you most.”

My motto has served me well since I said my last reluctant goodbyes to the grabby juvie raccoons and the shrieking chimney swift nestlings. I had new fears to face.

I started joining clubs, and actually going to meetings and making verbal contributions. And eye contact. With much tremulation I dialed up an old family friend that I hadn’t seen in years and asked if I could start hanging out at his vet clinic. I decided I wanted to go for an internship at the zoo, so I found out the name of the volunteer coordinator, called her until she called me back, and asked her a barrage of questions simply so that my name might make a small impression in her mind when it came time to start looking through those applications.

The results? I’ve become an officer in two school-related clubs. I’ve logged over 50 shadowing hours (so far) with three different vets at the vet clinic. And I landed the zoo internship. Not bad for things that, quite frankly, scare the bejeesus outta me.


Earlier today, the aforementioned old family friend (owner of two clinics, manager of four veterinarians, and veterinary practitioner of who knows how many decades) placed his hand on my shoulder and said,

“I want to give you some advice. If something scares you, DO IT.”

I politely accepted his sage advice, and thought to myself,

Yeah, I know. But I like my version better.

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High On Life

I have begun my first semester as a nearly full-time pre-vet undergrad. This is the first time that IUPUI has recognized incoming freshmen as a class intent to graduate within four years (that’s not something we typically aspire to here at IUPUI). So, here I am in these freshman level Biology and Chemistry courses with this Class of 2013, as they are called.

My first class this week was actually a tennis class I signed up for in order to fill a small hole in my schedule, and to give me yet another hobby (as if I need that). The first day of classes are always pleasant to me because I enjoy the awkward silence as everyone sits around not knowing each other and not wanting to speak at all. We all sat together like this waiting for our tennis instructor to arrive on Wednesday morning.  I looked around me at the well-worn rackets sitting next to these teenagers with fresh faces. I’m clearly the oldest of this group, though thankfully I don’t think that is obvious to anyone but myself. I’m wondering how I am going to pretend that it hasn’t been 12 years since I tried to play tennis. And how I’m going to reconcile the fact that most of my classmates were about 6 or 7 years old the last time I tried to play tennis. I’m hardly aged, but it’s strange to notice myself beginning to think in these terms. I suppose that if worse comes to worse and I embarass myself and end up feeling like a slow achy old woman, then I can always brandish my racket and yell “I have a college degree!” and that should make me begin to feel superior once again.

Our tennis instructor never showed. We sat around for a full 45 minutes, during which I absent-mindedly picked up a copy of Better Homes and Gardens to pass the time. I don’t know why there was a copy of Better Homes and Gardens at the tennis center, but there it was. So I flipped through it, and it was 60% ads, and 30% bad remodeling ideas, and about 8% barely interesting articles about landscaping. Just as I was about to chuck it in disgust, I came across an article aimed at parents. The article was meant to warn parents about the ease of purchasing drugs over the internet. However, I found it more enlightening and persuasive than anything else. I’m not exactly in the loop about these kinds of things, but I hadn’t considered the possibility of ordering drugs online and having them shipped straight to my door, as was explained so insistently in the pages of this magazine. The article not only tells you how easy it is, but goes on the say that there is no policing of the internet, so it’s safe. In addition they give you a short but informative description of the online drugs available and their effects. I’m thinking–this article sounds more like an advertisement than an admonition. I wonder how many lonely bored SAHMs picked up this article and started thinking about how easy, how safe, and how efficient it would be just to do a little browsing and have a little recreation shipped right to their doorstep.

Maybe none, but the thought of it amused me. And I was curious. So when I got home I did a little research. I wanted to know if it were really as easy as they said it would be to have drugs shipped to my house (“just a few clicks of the mouse!” or “within minutes!”). My initial search came up with a lot of “legal marijuana” for sale, hybrids and herbal cigarettes and whatnot. But no, if this article were legitimate then I should be able to get something highly illegal brought to me. So I kept searching. I went from one link to another, following hints and sending some emails to get links to other sites which linked to still other sites and more emails and finally, after jumping through several hoops in this manner, I have ended up with an email contact of a man in the Netherlands and a “menu”. But as of yet no address to send money and an order. Getting drugs online is clearly possible but not what I would call easy. And so my search ends, because I am not willing to waste the time of someone who seems very wary of what they are doing (with good reason) in order to inquire about something that I have no interest in acquiring. I’m only interested in wasting my own time in order to give my curiosity a reasonable amount of satisfaction.

And no, I won’t give you my contact’s email address 🙂

And thus concludes my adventures of my first half-week back in college. By this time next week I should be considerably less relaxed, considering that my three classes consist of seven different parts, in seven different buildings, at varying times each and every day, which means leaving at a different time and parking in a different part of campus every time I drive to school, which will be twice a day two days a week and once a day the other three. Not a routine that can be easily slipped into. But it will all be worth it in the end, right?

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