To the editor,
I love spring on a college campus. As hibernation in the library ends, the opportunity of longer days, the hype of March Madness and the over-caffeination of finals create a buzz of energy that blooms with the campus and makes you believe that anything is possible.
But this year is different. Now attending graduate school six hours south of the University of the people, I’m surrounded by stressed students constantly staring at their phones instead of the bursting azaleas around them. With no Bell Tower or impromptu performance in the Pit to serenade them, they move in their own world, headphones blaring to drown out the din of incessant traffic and the earth-shaking shift whistle from the construction site down the block. It has been six years since I spent an afternoon basking in the sun in Polk Place, but time isn’t the issue. This ACC school down I-85 may consider itself an equal to my beloved Carolina, but I know the same spring magic will never blossom here.
In these moments, surrounded by pockets of beauty but stuck in a city, I miss the peaceful hamlet of Chapel Hill. I long for afternoons on the quad. I feel the rocking chair blues for warm nights on the front porch of Alderman Hall, surrounded by the hum of cicadas and soft glow of streetlight lanterns. I feel a He’s Not cup in my hand and taste a cold pint of YoPo.
To ease my springtime nostalgia for the Southern Slice of Heaven, I find peace in an Avett Brothers mantra: “North Carolina. One day I'll, someday I’ll come home.”