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How to Avoid People, Vermont Edition

You should pay extra money for a single occupancy room. Really, it's worth it. I value my alone time in the morning and evening so much. Getting dressed and changed would be a real pain. Who wants to change in front of other people, and who wants to get dressed in a bathroom? Not me, and not me.
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You should only take a shower in the evening when no one else takes showers. You should sit by yourself at a table for meals. You one should listen to me about this because when there are 70 people who are living and breathing on the exact same schedule, you basically have to be with people. There's always going to be another person in the bathroom, there's always going to be another person brushing their teeth. We all eat in the cafeteria at the same time, because there's only a one-hour window to eat, so no matter when you go there's other people there. I try to sit alone, but often they come and sit with me. Go figure. I feel like a messy eater and prefer to not be seen, but there's nothing I can do.

And it's not like it's unpleasant or anything. Like today, Jo from Missoula, Montana sat at my table for breakfast. She had questions about my work she saw in my portfolio and complimented it. I remembered that I really liked some of her work too. Her work is garbage. Literally. She makes things out of garbage, but they are so cool. She made a garbage quilt that was surprisingly beautiful. She made these medals, like awards, out of garbage, and they were so cool, and I thought the implied message is really awesome. I told her that her garbage medals were genius and she told me a little bit more about the project. She expressed that my photos made her want to be a photographer. She said, "I don't know, I'm just....not a photographer. I wouldn't know what to photograph."
"You could photograph your garbage," I replied.
"Oh I do. I photograph garbage."
"'re a photographer." I crack myself up.

No matter when you take a shower, there are people coming and going, just can't be avoided. Although I do believe my floor is the most hermit floor of the bunch. I have heard from one of the guys that one of the floors is only men, so that answers my question about where they all are.

How to Avoid Pain
Let me know if you find out. I miss the simple pleasure of reclining. My tailbone hurts from sitting in regular chairs for hours everyday. Getting all the way up and down to a flat position in bed is quite painful, even rolling or changing position in bed. I'm perfecting the abless-rise—rolling to my side and then pushing solely with my arms to get up. Any engagement of my ab muscles causes sharp pains that do not immediately go away. There's extremely steep stairs leading up to the lecture hall and it causes the same sharp pains.
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I laughed at myself way too much with the above photo. The way my feet look super tiny just cracked me up. Ganesh commented that this reminds him of Totoro, which is an awesome observation. That's probably why I laughed so much because it reminds me to Totoro from my childhood.

I have been assigned my guidance group, which will be the one constant through my two years here. The Artist-Teacher changes every semester, the Faculty-Advisor changes every semester, but the guidance group remains. They are neutral counselors, who are actually just the same faculty people, but in a different role, that are there to bounce ideas off of and be there for you for any questions, and might be able to direct you to the right person to ask about a concern, etc. I got this guy named Mario and another guy named Viet, both from California who also travel in for the residency. Mario, coincidentally, I had a long conversation with in the taxi on the way over here from the airport, and he seemed like a cool guy, I didn't know he was faculty until almost the end of the 45 minute drive. When he gave his introduction to the whole group last night, he read two poems that were really cool. I'm going to ask him what they were again because they sounded great. There was one really cool line about letting all the hurt from others blow through you like wind through branches and then the sound of your leaves rustling can be used to soothe others. Really interesting imagery. So Mario earned points with me for reading a poem instead of actually introducing himself, and he gets another bonus point that poem was actually good.

This time in a week I will be going back to the airport. To go home. I don't know if that makes me feel better or worse.
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In summary, there are three things we have learned today, You can't avoid pain. You can't avoid people. (which often go together) And, I look like Totoro.