Watching the falling rain
One of my fondest memories of college days, pre-Jim that is, is of rainy days at the Campus Lodge (now demolished). This was 1980-81, pre-cellphones, pre-laptops, pre-personal internet, even. When it rained, it seemed all of us would gravitate toward the door at the end of the building where there was an overhang that provided shelter from the rain and hang out, just watching the rain.
Some people would stop on their way out, waiting for the rain to be over. Some would be coming in from the Eckerd’s across the street or McDonalds, or they might be returning from a class. Sometimes people from other buildings would take temporary refuge with us. Some of us would just wander down the hall, bored, and maybe the rooms got stuffy when it rained, I don’t remember.
All I know is that somehow a crowd of us would congregate and we’d have the best, long, desultory conversations. This is how I met many people who lived in the building.
When the rain stopped, we’d all go into motion again, as if the rain had held us in a trance. Everyone would wander back to their rooms or run late to class or cross the street to get something to eat. And the spell would be broken.
I’m sure no one in that group remembers these moments as fondly as I do—their best memories probably involve parties, football games, or trips to the beach. But I’ve always loved the simplest moments best. And Campus Lodge, stinky, moldy old Campus Lodge is where I became a free adult for the first time. I was lonely, until I met Jim, anyway, but I was free.