I always wonder how one person can fit so many things into one day. Every day here at Columbia I have gone to bed not wanting time to pass so that I can have more time to everything that this university and city has to offer me. Every day, class is challenging. Every day, I explore more. Every day, I change along with the motions of the city.
Today, I got the chance to go to the senior citizen's center down the street and teach them, along with a small group, about how to work computers again. I spoke about how to work emails. Like last week, they were all very inquisitive, especially Kathy who I found out actually attended Columbia for graduate school! After the Cyber Seniors session today, I became a little sad at the thought that I would be saying goodbye to these people forever. They said, "See you next week!" and it broke my heart to recognize the fact that I would not be seeing them for another session, or ever for that matter. Unfortunately, it was a reminder that my time here is coming to a close much faster than I could have imagined.
In class, we began discussion on the Patriot Act, an act in the United States put into effect after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. It was designed to deter terrorist activities by making it easier for law enforcement to obtain warrants for terrorist suspects. I think the entire act has very good intentions, but I also believe Section 215 makes it too easy for the FBI to obtain warrants for anyone on less than probable cause. The class discussions I have listened to and expressed myself in have made me realize the type of person I am and the political views I have. This is my first open-discussion class so I have had a hard time adjusting to the fact that my teacher and peers are sincerely interested in what I have to say. Not only is it a lot of fun, but expressing myself in different ways and getting to think in new ways is proving very beneficial to me and it has not even been three whole weeks.
After class, I did not have any official plans. However, spontaneity has always led to the best days, so I ended up heading to Little Italy on an RA trip along with Emily and Willow from the Furnald residential building. On the trip I was reminded of something Ms. Thrift told me yesterday. She told me that New Yorkers are surrounded by amazing food, but they walk it all off going from place to place. I guess, I am a New Yorker because we sure walked a lot and ate some good food! To get to Little Italy, we got off in the Bronx and walked at least one-and-a-half miles to get to Arthur Avenue. Once there (finally!), we escaped the heat and ate in a small restaurant for pizza. The pizza was really good and afterward, I had to satiate my sweet tooth of course, so we went to the bakery next door. It was fantastic! I had a biscotti and other Italian cookies that I devoured. Overall, it was a great experience and I am glad I went.
New York never ceases to amaze me. I am learning about myself, Constitutional Law, great food, new people, and about the East Coast college culture. I love it here and I am trying my best not to think of that plane departure on Saturday morning.