A day in the life of a semester 45 student is fun, yet exhausting. When you wake up in the morning there is no doubt in your mind that you’re going to learn something new. At the lovely hour of 6:30 in the morning, you wake up to the bell tolling from the quad, although the bell usually isn’t the one waking me up. I wake up to Meghan or Sarah poking me in the back saying, “Hey, you really need to wake up now!” Meghan is the maternal one in Orchard House, at a grand old age of 17. Morning chores are sometimes a little rough, but always rewarding. The great feeling of mopping a floor, or scrubbing a sink is undeniable. When you finally trudge to breakfast, and you feel like you can’t move anymore, there’s hope. You see the steaming hash browns or the lovely egg burritos out on the serving table, and that’s really when you wake up. Morning meeting always follows breakfast where people make announcements and are informed of the news and weather.
“Tonight the temperature will be dropping into the 40s, I’m sure everyone is going to enjoy that.”
After that you know you’re in the lovely state of Maine.
Everyday, I am challenged in my classes, but they are still enjoyable. Speaking to your teachers is easier here, and after a while they start to seem more like your buddies. In fact, Amy will sometimes get so wrapped up in the discussion she’ll forget to give out homework by the end of class. Don’t rejoice too quickly, because 99.9% she will leave it in your mailbox later.
By lunchtime, you’re ravenous, and if you’re not, then just a glance at the food will make you hungry. Homemade bread is my favorite thing that comes out of the kitchen everyday. Thank goodness for Bill, Lisa, and Sarah for fueling 40 students during breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Without lunch, people wouldn’t make it through Work Program. Following lunch most everyone takes a stroll over to the bulletin board to see what their job is. Although it may not sound very fun, Work Program is a great way to spend your time here at Chewonki. Whether you are harvesting basil, onions, or potatoes with Megan and Jeremy, or building some fences with Don Lamson, you are always guaranteed a good time.
Outdoor Activity Program, widely known as OAP (pronounced Oh-Op), follows work program. Walking to the lower field or the tennis courts and seeing hot pink leggings, metallic shirts, and some of the most crazy socks you’ve ever seen is not unusual. OAP requires flare, meaning that you must bring your A-game, and be wearing something that is just going to blow people out of the water when you come strutting up to the game in it. One of the most popular games played during this time is dodgeball. An observation of mine is that when I’m flaunting my flare, I play a mean game of dodgeball.
By dinnertime you’re thinking to yourself, “How have I done so much in one day?” You may also notice that there are some fantastic smells coming out of the kitchen. Almost everything in the kitchen is locally grown and vegetables even come from the farm. When you dig into your fresh garden salad, or your farm ham and potatoe pie, there’s no chance of you eating anything toxic. Let me tell you, this is a great feeling. Dinner is also a time for socializing. You are welcome at any random table and can soon find yourself in a deeply immersed in conversation with an Outdoor Classroom teacher.
At 7:30 it is time for study hours. If you use these two hours wisely, getting your homework done is usually not an issue. If you do not finish your homework, don’t fret. Cabin mates are very tolerant of letting you finish later that evening in the cabin, and they will often have to finish something up too. At 10 o’clock I am usually so ready to hit the hay. The words “I wish I could go to bed at 8 every night,” have definitely come out of my mouth. An advisor checks you in at 10 and then you are free to do what you want with your time, but being a student, I would highly suggest going to bed as soon as possible, because you’re going to have to wake up bright and early and do the same thing tomorrow morning.