Arrival and orientation
After a long layover in Detroit, I arrived in Burlington, VT yesterday afternoon where I ran into two upperclassmen in the Vermont College MFA program and two faculty members, Phyllis Root and Jane Resh Thomas. We all shared a shuttle to Montpelier, about a 45 minute ride away through tree- and snow-covered hills. Or maybe they call them mountains. They look like hills to me (I lived in the Wyoming Rockies so the Green Mountains don't look moutainy enough for the name).
Got checked in okay and issued my sheets and towels. People had warned me that the dorm rooms were plain and simple. A better descriptor would be Army barracks. I kept expecting to hear drill sergeants shouting at me to get in formation.
But, happy surpise, I got a single room, which I didn't request. It's tiny, about 8 feet by 12 feet, but no one to share with. My biggest fear about coming here was that I'd get a roommate who couldn't stop talking.
I met all the other students in my class last night. There are 17 of us, including one man from Iowa who served with the National Guard in Afghanistan. We played an ice breaker game where each of us told three things about ourselves, one of which had to be a lie. My lie was that I have four kids under age eight. I have no kids period.
Today has been all orientation stuff. Orientation to the school, to the library, to the computer lab. I'm almost oriented out.
At lunch today the newbies had assigned seats with the faculty intermingled with us. I was seated between Liza Ketchum and Margaret Bechard. When I was preparing for coming here and reading faculty books, I read Margaret Bechard's SF novel Spacer and Rat first.
Tonight visiting writer K.L. Going, author of Fat Kid Rules the World, will be speaking. I'm looking forward to it. I read that novel on the plane. It was fabulous.