Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Bright Lights for Sardines

You know that "fool proof" alarm method that I mentioned in the beginning of my last blog? I found out, today, that it was far more fallible than I thought. It didn't matter too much, as there was no class today, but I was a little late to our debate group meeting. We got a lot of work done, even with my tardiness. Look out, Tomi, we're coming prepared.

I'll admit, after the meeting, I was still really tired, so I went back to my room and took a nap. I woke up about an hour later, and I felt really refreshed. I spent the rest of my afternoon writing blogs and reading cases. I also began watching a documentary, but I didn't have time to finish it.

At 5:30 PM, I met up with the others at the gazebo. We joined a group of about twenty students and RAs, and made our way down to the Riverside Park, where we would watch fireworks later on in the night. On the way down, we stopped by Westside market to get food. I bought some tuna rolls and a soda; you know, health food.

We got to the park around 7:00. I took out my camera to take some photos, and found that I had forgotten to recharge it since last night. Needless to say, the battery didn't last long. Sorry, but there won't be any photos for this post.

We set up our blankets on the grass, and gathered into a kind of picnic arrangement. For the next couple hours we just relaxed in the park, by the water. As the time rolled by, more and more people started showing up. By night time, the path closest to the water was packed. Then, the fireworks began. I won't oversell them; they weren't mind blowing. Of course, they weren't terrible either. I ended up having a good time, not because of the show itself, but for the atmosphere. The smell of the water, the swarm of cheering people and the friends I was standing with culminated in a memorable experience.

Getting back to campus was difficult, to say the least. There were a lot of police officers present, and the scene after the show ended explained why. It was impossible to see anything in the crowd, because of both the sea of people, and the darkness. By the time we were back on the street, we were no longer one large group. I managed to stick together with Tomi and Aurea, as well as two other students. Not knowing where the others were, and unsure if we could make it back on time, we headed to the subway. I've never been so tightly packed in my life. I felt like a sardine. In the movie Fantasia 2000, there is a scene during Rhapsody in Blue in which a business man is jammed into an incredibly tightly packed subway car, where the people have to fit together like tetris pieces. I always thought that this was just an artistic exaggeration, but tonight taught me that, like many things about NYC, the over-the-top is accurate.

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