Adventures of a New Semester: Part 1

It’s been an interesting few days since returning to NAU. Campus is swarming with people, parking lots are full, and sirens are constantly going. Gone is the tepid pace of summer, replaced by the bustling back-to-school life. This week has been stacked full of activities scheduled on an hourly basis. I attended only a handful of events but found dozens of classmates from the past year. Yesterday I went mtn. biking with Cody in the morning, had a good disc golf game with James, and later found a good Mexican restaurant.

In the evening I was handed a map of a Ducket Hunt, a sort of treasure hunt around campus. There were 65 prizes hidden all over campus, on signs, statues, bike racks, trash cans, buildings, anything. After looking over the map I decided to get all industrious about it and got my bike and some lights and started searching for treasure. I started at the same time the hunt opened and—while everyone else was moshing at the rock concert nearby—began feverishly pedaling around campus, trying to decipher clues to help me find Duckets in the dark. I found my first Ducket, “In between Bury and Taylor Hall is where I lay you can sit on me and pass the time away,” buried inside an old stump. That was one of the easier clues—I found one more Ducket atop a high stone wall, but the other riddles I had to take home and decipher with the help of Google. “Ponderosa Tremuloides Gold Jingles, I don’t even know what it is but I love it,” was already claimed by the time I returned for it. Treasures I’ve found so far: $50 gift card to Patagonia store, $20 gift card to local restaurant, 4 one-day ski passes to Snow Bowl, and a NAU hoody of my choosing. I’m pleased, especially about the ski passes—now I won’t have to go through the agony of deciding whether to buy a season pass before October 1…

I copped out of the job fair this afternoon after a quick walk-thru. This one was a mess; the entire expo center was jammed with students with lines ten-deep at every booth. Students must be catching on that jobs are good—last year the fairs had more recruiters than students sometimes. I was on first name basis with Vanguard recruiters in my freshman year. Some of the booths were out of applications and they were telling people to go online and apply there. I’d already done that, so I figured it wasn’t necessary to stay.