Sometimes, as I am squashed against a cold window or, heaven forbid, forced to endure the aisle seat on a long Megabus trip, I reflect back on Sierra’s Emirates journey and can’t help but chuckle (Chuckling is the one where you weep quietly, right?) But this Monday night/Tuesday morning’s journey, as I curled up against a pile of outerwear acting as a pillow, sweating in the mysteriously warm cocoon of steel and patterned interior (more like Muggy-bus, am I right?), I was instead only able to smile widely, reflecting on the past weekend in Boston surrounded by those magical friends that have become my family.
I arrived early Friday morning (like obscenely early) and loitered around Boston’s illustrious South Station, not ready to show up to my Airbnb listing QUITE at the crack of dawn. However, after reading about 78 Shades of Grey, I was ready to brave the cold (and public transportation) to head into Somerville. Being the wheeler and dealer that I am, I booked a place about a mile from the main hotel where most of my brethren were staying for a fraction of the cost (that fraction being 1/3). And Airbnb KILLED IT!
The bed was warm, and since the person staying before me checked out early, I was able to nap for a few hours before shenanigans began.
I hit up Harpoon Brewery for a little visit/tasting, but I think I’ll do a separate post on that. Friday night was a whirlwind of too many cocktails and not enough photos, but I was so busy reuniting with old friends, the camera was the last thing on my mind. Luckily, especially considering how little I ate on Friday, Saturday started off with a delicious catered lunch.
Alas, the “barley salad” was actually a cleverly disguised olive salad (blech, olives are actually the very worst), but the sandwiches were delicious and I gobbled them up like the starving grad student that I am. And, after hours of meetings and paperwork and oodles of fraternizing (HA, get it?! Because we’re in a frat) it was time for the main event (or at least a main event). Cocktails!!
We dolled up. And, because I firmly believe that my frat only pledges ridiculously good looking people, it was great to ogle the eye candy (as incest-y as that sounds).
After plenty of schmoozing, the real fun began. If you’re any type of a frat star, you know that the night hasn’t officially begun until fraternity songs are playing on the piano and being screamed by your family.
If you’re not, trust me on this one.
There’s something about hearing the tunes that I sang all throughout my collegiate career being “sang” (being a bit generous with the term, here) by men and women from across the country (or, in the cases of many Taus, from around the world). Our drunken harmonizing might not get us a trip to Hollywood a la American Idol, but it’s the sweetest sound in the world to my ears. We, as a group, love to sing (and sometimes make the rafters ring), and it’s never more obvious than when hundreds of us are in the same house.
The next day was a little easier to wake up from (more foods + less drinks = better sleep all around) and, after a casual stroll through Cambridge (by casual, I mean nearly frostbitten), I arrived for the most visually appealing lunch setting I could imagine.
Much less olives in this lunch made for a more satisfying meal (and the fact that I grabbed about three pieces of foccacia and a wedge of butter, I think that helped, too.)
Cue more meetings, a quick jaunt back over to Somerville, some dolling up, and we’re back!
We enjoyed salmon, a wild rice blend, and a DELICIOUS broccoli rabe, which ended up more in peoples’ teeth than in their stomachs.
Then, inevitably, more schmoozing.
Disregard the flower in the hair, a last minute addition from the centerpiece (everyone was doing it). My particular choice of sandals was PERFECT for the dancing around as they possessed little to no traction whatsoever.
Translation? I was like an ice skater whirling around the dance floor.
I’ll admit, there was an interesting vibe at dinner I couldn’t quite put my finger on…. it was like everyone was not sure what was going to come next and, eventually, they learned the answer: nothing. Nothing was coming next, at least not in that banquet hall.
Luckily, the after-party was in full swing back at the fraternity house.
I’ll admit, the time back at the house felt a LOT like my sophomore year of college. They ran out of most of the booze, resulting in a number off odd mixers and liquors left. Everyone was whirling around the house like lunatics, with that desperation that could only come from the final night of a wonderful weekend.
Who haven’t we talked to?
Who haven’t we hugged?
When can I next get up to visit?
Will we EVER SEE EACH OTHER AGAIN?
You know, the usual. And, as 4:30 am rolled around, most people were still there. They were still hugging, and talking, and praying the morning would never come.
Unfortunately, since fraternity thoughts along don’t stop the earth’s rotation, the morning did come. And so did the goodbyes, and the final hugs, and the promises to visit, as they do every year. Luckily, since I’ve migrated to the Northeast, the ability to visit a few other chapters is actually semi-realistic. Although, let’s be honest, my heart is still down in Chapel Hill. And, since we’re still being honest, that’s the first place on my itinerary of places to visit. It’s not just because they’re far enough south that the promise of warmer temperatures.
It probably has more to do with the fact that, when I’m there, my heart glows enough to light the dance floor when we’re up until 4:30am shaking it.
God save the Delta Psi, my sisters and brothers from other mothers.