Monday, June 30, 2014

Heat Just Got Hotter

Today I was out of bed by 7:25, which was a few minutes later than I had hoped but still plenty early to go up to RPCC for a breakfast of Cream of Wheat, a little chocolate Danish, and coffee. We ate with Sophie, the girl in our class from San Francisco. By 8:45 I was seated in the lecture hall, leaving me time to review the Locke readings we'd been assigned.

Professor Kramnick surprised us today by adding extremely baggy cargo pants to his too-smart-to-care Birkenstocks. The extra fabric made his gesticulations in his lecture about Locke's background and thoughts all the more impactful. In discussion, Vijay helped us clarify and contextualize Locke's thoughts on the natural state of humans and how a logical progression from that state could justify government. Although Locke can be verbose, today's lecture and discussion were uncomplicated and fun. However, there is tension in the air from our approaching prelim on Wednesday. There will be at least one essay, some short-answer questions, and some quote identification work on Plato, Aquinas, and Augustine. I can barely remember their views on human nature, let alone identify their writing styles, so I'm quite nervous.

At lunch today I had a grilled cheese on whole wheat, a coconut yogurt with chocolate and almonds, and a Diet Pepsi. The yogurt was my favorite kind, and I was pleasantly surprised to find it offered at the Trillium.

After lunch, we returned to class for the writing workshop. After Vijay had instructed us in building a good thesis and fixing a bad thesis, we split into pairs to look the rough drafts of our Plato essays. I found errors in mine like terrible organization and long sentences. I've got a lot to fix before I hand it in next Thursday.

Confused clouds over the libraries
After class was dismissed for the day, I went with Kevin and Carla to the bookstore for a few minutes to buy face wipes. There I saw a great collection of funny, prankish gift options which I look forward to purchasing for people at home. I then walked back to North Balch while there were two minutes worth of showers, and left again ten minutes later under clearer skies to go to Vijay's office hours in the cafe of Olin Library. He offered great tips on how to structure my essay, for which I was grateful.

After office hours, I returned to North Balch for a few hours before dinner. Then, at 6:25, I hiked up to the RPCC lobby for the scheduled meeting with Mr. Chan-Law. He told us the travel details of Friday's upcoming trip to Niagara Falls. Then we all went upstairs to eat dinner. Mr. Chan-Law filled his plate multiple times in order to get the most bang for his buck. Meanwhile, I ate a bit of rainbow pasta with Alfredo sauce, a bean salad, and a bread stick. I had milk to drink. Later, I had a bowl of strawberry frozen yogurt and chocolate soft-serve ice cream. It was delicious, even if it wasn't as pretty as Jun's combination.

After dinner I returned to North Balch to read and blog. Today has been perhaps the hottest so far that we've been in Ithaca, and for the first time I was obligated to turn on my fan. Even dressed in my lightest apparel, I was totally wiped out by the heat, and had little extra energy to spare. I could barely move to drink from my water bottle, let alone adjust the fan. Tomorrow is meant to be even hotter, which makes me wonder whether I'll meet with any success at all trying to study. Perhaps the single air-conditioned lounge area in North Balch will be quiet tonight and tomorrow afternoon.

Although I have only a day and a half before taking the prelim, I am hopeful that I can get to sleep by midnight tonight in order to be rested for tomorrow.

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