My first year of college was definitely a learning experience. I learned so much about the world, politics, people and myself (as corny as it sounds). I also have a few crazy stories that spiced up my freshman year. Looking back, these memories are definitely late night comedy show material. So without any more rambling, here are some of my first-year horror stories: tales of caution and laughs.
- At the beginning of the year, I just moved in and my roommate had not arrived on campus yet. I didn’t have any friends yet and didn’t know where to go to make some, so I decided to waste some money at Whole Foods. Because I basically lived my entire life at church, my house and my dance studio, I didn’t know how to use the bus, so naturally, I ordered an Uber. When the Uber pulled up, the driver was an older white man with a Santa vibe. His slight chubby arms and belly were paired with a slightly red face that did not compliment his daffodil-yellow shirt. I got in the backseat and we drove off on the six-minute drive. At first, it was quiet until he started asking about my braids and giving me accolades on my beauty, which I did not mind because I had been compliment-deprived all summer. He apologized because he didn’t want to seem like a predator. After his second apology and me telling him it was fine, I heard an awful buzzing noise close to me. I brushed it off as a voice in my head, but it was continuous. I turned my head to the back window to find the source of the sound. I was shocked and terrified to see a stapler-sized, plum colored dragonfly with the largest, most disgusting eyes staring into my soul. I fought tears back and thought of a way to get out of the situation that didn’t involve jumping from a moving car. I decided to let the enlarged insect escape through the window. It clearly wasn’t as intelligent as I thought and continued to try to get its body through the back windshield. I finally screamed, alarming the driver who asked if I was alright and of course I said no. I requested to sit in the passenger seat. He let me crawl to the front and luckily I was small enough to fit. I kept looking over my shoulder because clearly, this bug was out to get me. The dragonfly left eventually but my trauma didn’t leave as quickly. From that day on, I have been paranoid around dragonflies and anything that flies.
- Since I am a sheltered preacher’s daughter, I experienced my first sips of alcohol in college. I used alcohol as a way to “de-stress” and it got a little habitual. One chilly Friday night in November, parties were nonexistent. This was my only day to go out since I would be gone all of Saturday for a field trip to Chicago with my FIG. I was going through alcohol-deprivation in my room when my roommate suggested I go to this lowkey party. I second guessed my decision as I got dressed in a sparkly top and skinny jeans. It took me thirty minutes to get to the address because I got lost twice. At the party, I found one of my new friends and he introduced me to his friends. He had to leave for some reason and told his friends to babysit me and keep me away from alcohol because of the field trip tomorrow. I played along until my new friend went upstairs for 2 minutes. Within those two minutes, I consumed 5 solo cups of strong wop. My friend came back in time to see the alcohol hit and we enjoy ourselves despite my disobedience. I’m twerking in jeans and hitting the splits in the middle of the dance floor, just being WILD. When I got home, I annoyed my roommate with random questions while spilling three types of popcorn. I finally fall asleep since I only had a few hours left until the bus departed for Chicago. I woke up to my alarm with a queasy stomach and I knew what was coming. I sprinted to the bathroom to reach the toilet before the flood came. When I was done with round one, I stared at myself in the mirror and said, “Wow, this is really my life right now”. Rounds two and three came right before it was time for me to go to the bus. Not much came out, but the heaving was strenuous. Once I got to the bus, I explained to my friends that I didn’t feel well. The nausea came back and I screamed for a trash can that kept me company for the rest of the four hour-long bus ride. It turns out I was throwing up bile from my stomach rejecting the alcohol or something like that. My routine was: throw up, drink some bitter bottled water, sleep and repeat. Once we got to a pitstop, my friends got me some Sprite, a sandwich and some crackers to ease my stomach. I am eternally grateful for the love and support I had on that small, charter bus.
- Later in the year, when my roommate and I actually became friends, we decided to go to the mall and enjoy our refund checks by buying some well-deserved shoes. My roommate was a shoe-fanatic and she stayed helping me step my kick game up. Picture it: a cold January day. Two 19-year-old girls with their hands full with shopping bags full of heavy shoes in a gas station waiting for the bus. Fifteen minutes pass, no bus. Another fifteen minutes pass, still no bus. By this time, we had grown restless and were slowly freezing to death. Our hands were losing feeling and mobility. Our toes had been frozen for a while. Our noses, despite our melanin, were turning Rudolph-red as the seconds passed. My roommate suggests going to the gas station and ordering an Uber. When the Uber is called, I get a notification that our Uber driver is ready for them outside. A lady driver in a black truck pulls up as we trudge outside to greet her. Instead of waiting for us to get in the car, the driver pulls off, leaving us in the snow, shocked and with a message that says Uber will send another driver in a few minutes. Looking at each other in disbelief, we wait impatiently inside the semi-warm gas station for the second Uber. Moral of the Story: Use Lyft!
- If you know me, you know a few things. One, I am bougie. Two, I love ballet. Three, I am directionally challenged. You could say I’ve lived a pretty privileged life since I never had to think about public transportation. That changed as I got to campus. I only used the bus with my well-traveled friends because I did not trust myself or Google Maps to get me to my location. It was a boring day after winter break and I got a text and facetime call from one of my good friends telling me to come over to his other friend’s apartment for a low kickback. So, being the girl I am, I put on some light makeup, my favorite booty hugging leggings, a sweater, and a coat and start my 30-minute trek. That’s when I realized I could take the bus because it is warmer and quicker. I got on a bus with some sketchy looking people, but I tried not to judge and simply stared at Google Maps for the next direction. It told me to get off, but I thought I could get closer to the building if I stayed on for a little longer. I rode for a little longer and at each stop, I noticed that I was getting further and further from places I knew. At one point, I was the last one on the bus and decided to get off. It’s 10 pm. I was at a corner of a neighborhood I’ve never seen before. It was so dark that I could barely see anything besides the one street light ten feet away. I felt the tears and stress about to burst out of me as I looked around trying to find anything or anyone familiar. I got scared and was about to spend my last $20 to buy an Uber until the bus driver asked me if I’m okay. I started to say ‘Yes’ when the rational being in me spoke up for once and said ‘No’. I told him where I needed to go and he told me to get back on the bus because I was at the end of the line. I am so thankful for this bus driver not letting me die that night so far from campus. When I finally made it to my friend’s house, I almost cried because I thought I would never see him again. He, being a Gemini, asks why I am so dramatic and we laughed at my pain.
These are a few of the many horror stories that flowered my first-year experience and hopefully, you can learn from my mistakes.