The sun was peeking out from behind my curtains, which weren’t closed usually. For the first time in months, it was too warm for the giant white comforter sprawled across my bed. My head hurt…and my nose was stuffed. Spring time, and the hookah made me feel like shit.
I threw off the covers and pushed myself up. Reaching for the curtains, the textbooks on the windowsill almost fell behind the bed. In my cozy room, there wasn’t always room for everything.
My feet shuffled along the floor of the dirty hallway, slipping over the gravel that seemed to never be swept up. In our bathroom, which never ceased to smell like must and urine, I waited for the forty-seven year old pipes to warm up before stepping into the marble shower. It was the first time I had the bathroom to myself on a Saturday morning in a long time.
Throwing on a knit sweater and crisp jeans, I left my jacket on the back of my chair. I didn’t pick up a scarf, for the first time since last year, and I threw on a pair of wayfarers. I squirted a bit of cologne, because I knew I would smell like shit once I left.
Saturday brunch. On the weekends, the residents poured out of their dorms at promptly 10:30 a.m. for add-water eggs and recently slaughtered ham. I sat with Talia in the very back of our dining room, known as the porch, and dialed Anne. She always needed me to wake her up on Saturday. I managed to wake her up in between my bites of the usual, a bagel with egg and burned vegetarian sausage.
Before long, I was at the adirondacks: not the mountains, but our version of the cool kid spot. Our adirondack chairs were our glory: the Academy had them custom made for students all over campus, but the one’s above the baseball field were always full of kids with nothing to do.
I passed by the Marshmallow on the customary weekend outing to Walmart, in a land far away from our Main Street. Making my way down the long street that was campus, I plopped in the cold grass with some juniors to watch our Lax Bros take on our rivals. I waved the navy and gold streamer in my hand, despite the fact that I wouldn’t mind seeing the Lax Bros get their shit handed to them.
Before halftime ended, I walked half a mile to outskirts of town to get a coffee from the drive-thru Dunkin Donuts that operated out of the only gas station. Hannah, Annie, and Talia all sip on their watery coffees and drag on their weekly crush Camel’s from home. The sun was at it’s lowest point over the mountain ranges all around us, and we took the most beautiful selfies that seemed photoshop to the rest of our Facebook communities.
The smell of over-cooked meat always welcomes you into dinner, where the ham tastes like rubber and the cold mashed potatoes are bland. Scarfing down leftovers from Thursday’s lunch, we all are on our phones, bored. You might hear a laugh echo across the porch and join in, just for fun.
Later, in the darkness of the girl’s common room, we all watch a movie we’ve seen a hundred times. Cheap chips, crackers, beef jerky, and raw cookie dough fill the room before the only supermarket in town closes.
And, before you know it, I’m laying on the wet and hard baseball field just before in dorms. Talia and I are holding hands and staring at hundreds of stars. We’re both sad, but we don’t say anything. Only six weeks before we would be walking across this field for the last time.
It was just another day at the Academy.