Under the Big Sky

Another incredible week has passed under the big southwestern sky—a perfect week in almost every way. There were few assignments due and very little homework and I finally caught up on domestic duties like laundry and cleaning. I had time to read a book! and time to install a Windows 7 operating system on my computer. More on 7 later.

Homecoming was this weekend, probably my favorite college holiday. Thursday night there was a free carnival, free food, mud pit tug-of-war, lumberjack pageant, chili cook-off among campus dining cooks, and bonfire with outdoor dancing. The purpose of the pageant is to determine who will wear the Louie Lumberjack mascot costume for the next year. It’s a four-part contest where guys give a little speech, show their muscles, do a talent show, and answer random questions. Talents were everything from handling snakes to dancing, one even proposed to his girlfriend on-stage at the end of his act. The bonfire was built from a huge stack of lumber with flames over 30 feet high which warmed and lit nearly the whole field.

Friday I worked all afternoon at the store, then helped set up the homecoming dance. The theme this year was ‘Flashback Jacks’ so decorations featured prominent parts of the last five decades. The dance was a huge success with over 350 people attending this year, over twice as many as last year. By 1am we had everything cleaned up and went home. I wasn’t very tired so stayed up for awhile doing homework and such. Plans were to meet friends downtown at 5:30am for food and fellowship during Tequila Sunrise, an annual Flagstaff homecoming tradition. Downtown streets are blocked and restaurants have free food and celebrations. But by 5:30 I was dead tired and decided to sleep through it. At 9 I went downtown with the alumni association to sell homecoming t-shirts to the alums and partiers. The latter were mostly too drunk for all but love and hugs and provided comedy for all. Click the pics to enlarge.

The parade was at 11 with military flyover by NAU alum pilots, floats by most of the NAU residence halls, and the usual high school and college bands. After the parade some of us got lunch at a pasta place and then headed over to staff the alumni association booth at the tailgate outside the football dome. Shirt sales were much better this year than last, with profits going for a scholarship for an overachiever student. Here’s a picture of business college professors grilling it up, serving students free beer and brats…

NAU won the football game against Idaho State 42-12; they’re now 3rd place in Big Sky conference, a huge improvement from coming in almost dead last out of 16 teams last year. Football is big money; winning means millions of dollars in bonus revenue for the university each year they can stay at the top.

So that’s the little weekly update. The skies are clear and blue every day and it’s warm and bright outside right now…I’m itching to get out and go mountain biking or something to take advantage of the awesome weather I too often ignore. Stay tuned…