The Northwest living
An excerpt from the records of the nunnery.
I had a friend who graduated from Trinity Western University with great social standing AND a boyfriend, and so before I began my own TWU journey I felt compelled to ask her the secret to her success. I didn’t bother with course selections, the caf mystery meat, or even the best spots on campus to study, oh no. I was worried about one thing and one thing only: where I would rest my head each night. She revealed the breakdown: Douglas was for the hard-core partiers (if you can call staying up until 2 am playing Dutch Blitz a party), Fraser was the happy place, and then there was Northwest. As soon as I said the word, her whole body reacted in a shudder, like she was trying to forget a nightmare or something.
So there I was on Orientation Day, having confidently picked my building placements of 1) Fraser, 2) Douglas, and 3) Northwest. I wasn’t fooled by the perfectly lit, bright picture of Northwest on the website, oh no, I had myself an inside source and I was heading straight to Fraser to start unpacking. So, my mom pulls the minivan up beside a lady with a list who held my fate on her clipboard. What came from her mouth were the five most earth shattering words I had heard in my 18 years of life: “you are living in Northwest.” I couldn’t control it, I immediately had a picture of myself at thirty-five stroking my favourite cat while opening yet another baby shower invitation from a fellow student who had married at the ripe age of 21 and continued to “go forth into the world and multiply.” The reason for her success: she had the good fortune to live in Douglas.
That O-day marked the first day of the two years (including a three week summer school stint and being an RA there in my second year) that I hung my hat in good old NW. Now to visit that infamous building, even to attend classes on the bottom floor is not the same as living there, so I will let you in on some of the secrets about this beautiful beast:
1) The rumours are true - it’s a walk. As a nursing student, I had to leave at least 15 minutes before my class started to get over to Neufeld in the nick of time. I remember complaining to a commuter about how early I had to get up and she asked why she never saw me in the collegiums as a commuter. I had to break the news to her: my commute was from across campus, and didn’t even require a car.
2) The walk also brings perks such as time to think, ponder, pray, reflect on life, oh and did I mention the perfectly placed Fraser lounge windows that serve as the seamless, casual way to check your outfit on the way to class. Let’s not lie, we all do it, girls. #notsosubtle
3) The North side of the building is the perfect spot to not only watch hot, shirtless guys play basketball, but to also stalk couples going on walks, having DTR’s, and making out. Now, you may be thinking, “I see DTR’s all the time, they’re fair game anywhere on Trinity’s campus.” No, no, the best part about these DTR’s, is that these couples actually think no one can see them. Northwest girls are the ultimate resource for campus relationships.
4) Ah yes relationships. This was going to come up eventually. As someone who lived in Northwest for two years and is in a female dominated program, I surrendered to the fact that it may not be in the cards for me here. Every year we are encouraged by previous Northwest tenants who overcome the odds. One girl will go down in the history books forever because she had a boyfriend by the end of O-week. The rest of us keep our chins up and fight the difficult ratio of 150:0.
5) This is the only residence that has classes held in it during the day. That not only brings us the Cog, but also some embarrassing moments. During finals, a bunch of us were heading down the main staircase when I decided to sing out my breakfast order, as in “TWU breakfast sandwich here I come!!!!” It wasn’t until an entire auditorium full of exam-writing heads turned to look at me through the open door that I realized we weren’t alone. I got over it until later that day one of the girls writing the exam asked me “Hey Gill, how was that breakfast sandwich?”
My first reaction was a tad extreme and in my two years living in Northwest I truly grew to love that absurdly bright building with its even more absurd reputation. When I see a pack of giggling girls heading past the gym, a little part of my heart warms up and I’m reminded of many wonderful, ridiculous memories #worththewalk