Back from the University of Michigan campus at Ann Arbor, MI..I am reliving another kind of love affair. My last post was about my love with the skyscraper city and this one's about my love for university towns.
University towns are charecterised by their small size, gridded by one- way avenues and streets running perpendicular to each other, quaint little brick buildings, match box sized student apartments, a bustling life at any time of the day, and of course an excellent bus service that is mostly nonexistent in the rest of the US. There is so much of diversity in these places that u can almost get away with any crap u do...Then of course there are a varitey of restaurants and bars and grills and wat not?
Though I did most of my Master's research at Hershey, where the Penn State medical center is housed, I chose to spend the spring semester in 2003 at the main campus - University Park alias Happy Valley. I rented myself a studio aparmtent and I just loved the view from my fifth floor window. Apart from labbing, most of the time I was glued to Disney channel. Though the winter really sucked that year, the buses were my saving grace - I was always running and stopping to catch a bus that was in gear already... When D first landed in US in Feb 2003, she stayed with me for 10 days and we had so much fun hanging out in Nittany mall, where there is always cheap stuff for students to buy. Whenever SMS came to meet me, his car would be towed away, for the lack of a parking permit - our plans would always be delayed...I auditioned for singing in a Desi band called Induz Elements and I got selected too....We did some fund raisers which was great fun. And there was V, my one and only close friend in this town....hmmm great memories......always nice to relive the good ones!
Then I visited OSU in Dec 2003 under tragic circumstances, but was in my senses enough to notice how it looked so similiar to PSU
This weekend it was UMich - the moment I landed I was hit by this "University town" DejaVu - but I really loved it. For anyone visiting Ann Arbor, I would highly recommend this restaurant calles "Madras Masala"- the best South Indian restaurant I have visited in the US. I also tried Ethiopian food for the first time and I really liked it. We sat at home and watched a lot of crap Tamil movies, I had not caught up with...VSK cooked for us one day - I should say it wasnt as nasty as I expected... I guess it was all G's training:)))) Though G was kinda busy with her research, we did get to spend some quality time.
Highlight of the trip was our visit to the Henry Ford Museum - where we saw all these great cars, like the one in which Kennedy was shot,some antiqued Bugattis, Royces, 18th century cars [maybe I should spell them with a "t" , most of them did look like carts]... and of course the museum also preserves "kitty hawk" - the first plane made by the Wright Brothers...Standing there I couldnt help but wonder how many changes one single century has brought into human life - it is not a giant leap, it is something of a flight from one planet to another. Yes. The earth would have been a very different planet in good and bad ways if these changes had not occured!
All of these topped with 8 inches of snow made this trip a really good one!