For this to happen, I first had a little come-to-Jesus with the academic advisors in la Oficina de Programas Internacionales. Maricarmen very tactfully explained that my schedule as it stood as of last post was going to be very challenging. Now, she had mentioned something to this effect before, but seriously - as a Georgetown SFS student studying STIA to boot, and I´m not going to let a full courseload of fourth-level direct-matriculation Spanish classes intimidate me. Yeah.
But the more I thought about it as the week wore on, I realized she had a point. Yes, I could keep my schedule and maybe even do well, but it would most definitely mean a boatload of reading and essays every weekend. (Well, yes, this is like, you know, college.) It took me a few days to come around, but then it began to sink in that this semester wasn´t about taking the most difficult classes possible and spending every night holed up in the library. (But... guys...! College!!) We´re supposed to be going out and meeting people, using Spanish outside the classroom (concept...) and traveling somewhere new and beautiful every weekend. It wasn´t necessary to keep up the same killer pace as any other semester at home. Having realized this, I changed my schedule.
Well... that´s almost what happened. Really I checked my degree audit online at the beginning of this week, and realized that not counting this semester, I had room to take 15 classes but only had 11 or so credits left. That´s when I really started getting all Bambi about this whole boondoggle and loosened my death grip on my class schedule.
First, instead of going to Seguridad en el Medio Oriente, I checked out Empredimiento Ambiental (Environmental Entrepreneurship) during the same time slot, just to see what it was like. COOLEST CLASS EVER. At this point, I´m pretty jaded in terms of STIA-esque classes, and it´s rare to be introduced to completely new concepts that I´ve never studied before. This class, with an awesome professor and really well-informed students, continually brings up new concepts or case studies, or introduces old ones in ways I´ve never examined them before. Right after class I registered for it online.
The next class to get the boot was the last SFS core class remaining, Latin American Thought. It was the most difficult in terms of the level of Spanish that was required, but dropping it felt like admitting defeat. Come to think of it, it still does. I can only comfort myself in the thought of copious weekend trips unhindered by essays on "la soledad de America Latina".
To drop this class, I went back to Maricarmen of endless patience for assistance. I´d looked through some extracurricular-ish classes but hadn´t seen much that I was excited about taking. She knew the courses better than anyone though, so I asked for a recommendation, "You know, something easy, maybe an art class!" (Art class? Will the hilltop even take me back??)
Scrolling through the course list, she found an opening in Tejido Básico, according to her one of the best professors and a personal favorite of hers. It happened to be at the same time as Latin American Philosophy, so of course it was meant to be. She made the change so that I would be enrolled in the class for the next morning.
I had forgotten to check for the building and classroom the day before, so I got to campus a few minutes early to look it up online at one of the banks of computers. I ran into Tom who was waiting for his class to start. We then had a conversation that went something like this:
"Going to class?" "Yeah, I just have to find the classroom first. I switched into an art class!" "Oh cool, what class?" "Um... Tejido Básico. Maricarmen recommended it." "Tejido? What is that?" "You know... [pause] I´m actually not sure."
[[Sidenote - I´m not stupid, or even that blonde really, I was just not that concerned with whatever this class was I had signed up for. It was art. Art was art. That´s all I´d needed to know.]]
"Tejido... that´s weaving, right? I´m pretty sure that´s weaving." "Weaving?? I´m taking a weaving class? That´s awesome!!"
So yeah. I´m taking Basic Weaving. Be jealous.