A Few of My Favorite Things...Bucknell COVID Edition

From the day we were all sent home from campus (or in my case, study abroad) in March, it seems as though we were all patiently waiting for some sense of normalcy. This summer felt like an emotional rollercoaster of believing everything would get better by August, to accepting the reality that COVID-19 will inevitably ruin my senior year. While it feels selfish in the middle of a pandemic to have longed for a typical Bucknell senior year filled with non-socially distant traditions, it is honestly all that I hoped for this past summer. And weren’t we all hoping for life to go back to normal? Yet, despite the major differences in this fall semester, it has honestly been the best one yet. The Bucknell COVID fall semester has undoubtedly been challenging for everyone, but it has also been months of finding silver linings and valuing what it truly means to be a Bucknell student. 

  1. Small Gatherings in my Gateway 

While I have always known how lucky I was to be able to have a close-knit group of friends, I have never appreciated them more than this semester. And yes, while I was pretty bummed about the curfew restrictions at Townie, I realized what made nights out at Bucknell so much fun we're never the parties but the people who went to those parties. Hanging out with my roommates (and honorary roommate, hey Gabi) in our Gateway have been some of the best memories I have had in my four years here. 

  1. Adirondack Chairs on the Quad

Hands down, we have the prettiest college campus in America, especially, in the fall. However, in the usual hustle and bustle in between classes and heading to the library, I never sat down and appreciated the beauty our quads have to offer. Whether it be eating dinner on the quad with friends, reading a book between classes, or just catching up on some homework on an Adirondack chair, I have made the most of simply being outside this semester. What does the inside of Bertrand even look like anymore? I spend too much time staring at it from my specified orange Adirondack chair to even know. 

  1. Hildreth-Mirza Hall

I may regret giving this secret away, but as a once avid library goer I was forced to find a new favorite outdoor study spot. The tables outside Hildreth-Mirza hall, perfectly placed near the Flyson for a quick snack break and scenically positioned in a gardenesque vibe with flowers, plants, and large trees, has become my new home away from home. Shifting away from my usual library going habits has again forced me to value the essence of productivity outdoors. Something about writing ten-page papers outside in the sun has made doing work much less of a chore. 

  1. The Buffalo Valley Rail Trail

After biking the rail trail all the way to Rusty Rail, walking the rail trail, or stopping for dinner at Jackass Brewery, the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail has become a major part of my weekends at Bucknell. So much so that I am annoyed I had never been before this semester. The rail-trail is hands down one of the best things Lewisburg has to offer, whether you're looking for some much-needed exercise, need to clear your head after a midterm or just want to spend time with friends. Whatever your reason, you need to go. 

What I thought was going to be one of the most disruptive, hectic semesters of my college career turned out to be one that made me value Bucknell and Lewisburg so much more. Maybe breaking the routine of normalcy at Bucknell was all I needed to truly appreciate my college years. While this semester did not meet the expectations of my freshman year self, it far surpassed them and I cannot wait to hopefully gain even more of my ‘favorite things’ in the spring.