What To Expect In College - Freshman Chronicles
I chose to attend a college considerably far from home in hopes that I could do some much needed growing up. Little did I know that I would get my wish! Let me tell you about my first two weeks as a college freshman, so that you can prepare for the unexpected! I write this article in honor of my freshmen year of college.
*Cue song* "I wish, that, I knew what I know now"
The I.D. Photo Fiasco
First of all, let me define "fiasco." Fiasco is defined as "...a thing that is a complete failure, esp. in a ludicrous or humiliating way." That was about how I describe my first college I.D. card.
Now I don't consider myself particularly self centered or vain, but I did want a reasonably good looking I.D. card...ok so I wanted to look really good. What freshman girl doesn't? Let me explain...
My boyfriend at the time came with my family and I to drop me off at school. I was thrilled that he came along with us because that meant that we could spend a few more days together, and he got to see where I would be going to school.
The time came for him to leave, and I got a bit hysterical. So with my eyes all swollen and my face all blotchy, my roommate informed me that I had to go get my photo taken for my new school I.D. right away. Noooooo! Awesome right?
So I set a direct course for the restroom so I could salvage my face and regroup so the picture takers wouldn't think I was nuts. My roommate and I found the I.D. room, and took the photo. Honestly, the resulting I.D. card was not as bad as it could have been. But, I had this card for the rest of the school year and had to use it everyday.
I grew pretty fond of the thing, and I still carry it in my wallet behind my newly updated (and fabulous looking, might I add...) I.D. card. Now, it brings a laugh to everyone I tell the story to.
I do this thing where I name my electronics, including my car. I do it mostly because... it's fun to. So, let me introduce to you, Delilah. She is my dearly beloved 1999 Honda Accord. Yet during my first two weeks of school, she didn't show me much love. I feel like maybe she was rebelling about being dragged out of California, only to be dumped in the rural midwest for the next 9 months. Your guess is as good as mine.
Anyway, during my first two weeks of school, she decided to rebel against me. Her first tantrum (or maybe my inattention) resulted in a dead battery (from leaving the overhead light on). I thought Delilah should have known better than that. At the time, I was still finding my rhythm with classes and campus life, so I didn't have very much time to try to jump Delilah.
Rebellion number 2: About that time, I realized that one of her tires had gone flat in addition to the dead car battery! Talk about getting a crash course in taking care of your car. Before leaving for school, my dad did most of my car's upkeep for me. Now, poor Delilah was in my hands.
I did enough research to know that after you jump a car, it needs to be driven for about 20 minutes. So, getting the tire fixed was first on the agenda. Luckily for me, I had AAA and they came to change my tire. I'm not sure why it didn't occur to me to have them jump my car, but I figure that I was so happy that they changed my tire, that I just thanked them and let them go on their merry way without giving the battery a second thought. So, I grabbed a girl on my hall to help me jump my car a day or two later. Silly Delilah...
Checking Account Challenge
I knew the new town didn't have the bank that I used back in California. So I knew that I would have to open up an account at the local bank in town when I got to school. Now that I had Delilah up and running, this process of getting to the bank would be infinitely easier! Little did I know that the bank has different hours on the weekends than it does on weekdays. I figured that one out soon enough though.
My roommate and I were able to collaborate on a time during the week that we both could go and open up checking accounts. That was a learning experience all in its own, let me tell you! Previously, I had NO idea how to open up a checking account. But, thankfully, the lady at the bank was very helpful and understanding of my banking ignorance. So now, I am the proud owner of a checking account AND a savings account.
R.I.P Hard Drive
During all of this, my new laptop decides to follow in Delilah's footsteps and rebel against me. Twice (the second time didn't happen until later in the year thank goodness).
The laptop I had been given as a birthday present only a few months before, crashed. You need to understand that finding uninterrupted time in a college dorm room is near to impossible!
Eventually, I set aside a 3 hour time slot to call tech support. I knew what needed to be done in this case. I wanted the computer company to send packaging materials to me so that I could send them my faulty computer for them to fix. After all, I had a year warrantee on it, and I had only owned it for a few months.
After two hours of waiting, and retelling my computer woes to 3 people, I finally managed to get them to send me the shipping materials. But before they agreed to do this, they had me run a series of "diagnostic checks." These consisted of pushing a whole bunch of buttons in programs that I was unfamiliar with.
Then the guy told me that they needed the serial number on the hard drive. Lucky enough for me, I happened to have a tool set that had a screw driver so that I could unscrew the panel that the hard drive was beneath. He had me remove the hard drive, and replace it, to to avail.
After requesting shipping materials for the umpteenth time, the guy finally gave in (thanks to my expert persuasion techniques) and agreed to send the materials. I have to admit, I felt pretty good about being able to handle the crazy people working at tech support.
Talk about learning life lessons right from the get go! Thankfully, all of the things that went wrong with my first semester freshman year had absolutely nothing to do with school related issues or class scheduling. My stuff just seemed to revolt. So, now you can be a little bit more prepared for the unexpected! Just in case your stuff decides to revolt too...
*Cue song* Can't Touch This! Dun, dun, dun, dun...