Hannah: How To Travel From Your Couch

Recently, I have found myself talking to squirrels in the yard.

While social distancing is necessary, it’s easy to become stir crazy. Luckily, some amazing museums, zoos, theaters and historical sites are offering some fun (and educational!) distractions. Here are a few of my favorite places to fly to on the web: 

  • Take a tour of the Musée d’Orsay 

This Paris museum is in a former railway station, built for the Exposition Universelle of 1900. The building itself is a work of art. You can check out the largest collection of impressionist and post-impressionist art in the world, from Degas to Renoir to Monet. Take the virtual tour here.

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  • Go inside the White House 

Take a tour of the different sections of the White House, learn how White House customs have evolved, and become inspired by its art collection. And with the app’s Presidential Lookalike feature, you can take a selfie and learn about the president or first lady you most resemble! Take the virtual tour here.

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  • Peruse the Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Met has over “5,000 years of art from around the world for everyone to experience and enjoy.” Look at Vermeer paintings, ancient Egyptian drawings on papyrus, Christian Dior designs,  and so much more. Take the virtual tour here.

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Watch a New York Metropolitan Opera

New York’s Metropolitan Opera is running nightly Met Opera streams, live streaming filmed HD performances. The operas begin at 7:30 PM EST each evening and remain online for 20 hours after. Learn more here

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  • Visit The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History 

Check out one of the world’s most visited museums! You can explore fossils, ocean life, insects, gems, minerals, butterflies and even past exhibits. Take the virtual tour here

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  • Laugh with Second City 

Watch an improvised show from the place where Steven Colbert, Tina Fey, Keegan-Michael Key and so many other famed comedians got their start. Second City is live streaming free comedy performances via Zoom. Their show, Improv House Party, allows you to watch performers improvise digitally. Learn more here.

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  • Check out some animal cams

Zoos and aquariums have animal cams that livestream what the critters are doing while we all are home. Check out some of these live cams:

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  • Visit the Sistine Chapel 

Have your breath taken away by Michelangelo’s renowned ceiling frescos. Usually the Sistine Chapel is filled to the brim with tourists. Virtually, you are able to admire the ceiling with the whole place to yourself. Take the virtual tour here

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  • Go to Hawaii’s Volcanoes National Park 

Take a virtual ranger-led tour around one of the best known (and most beautiful) national parks. You’ll be able to experience fiery lava flows, leafy rainforests and even a helicopter flight over an active volcano. This is something you can’t miss!

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  •  Dive into Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary 

Be able to dive into the ocean for free (and without a wetsuit)! Virtually swim around soft corals, a 1942 shipwreck and the world’s only underwater research laboratory. Virtually dive here

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  •  Take a tour of the Great Wall of China

Walk around the Great Wall of China without even putting on your sneakers. Step into a piece of history that has been around for about 2,000 years. Check out the virtual tour here

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  •  Escape to Versailles

Tired of your house? Travel to a different (and no offense, probably fancier) place! Escape to the gilded home of French King Louis XVI and Queen Marie Antoinette (at least before the revolution). Explore the extravagant bed chambers, the hall of mirrors and the gravel paths of the royal gardens. 

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So, the next time you are feeling restless, instead of putting yourself and others in danger, travel from the comfort of your couch! Have fun sight-seeing in your sweats 😉 

Hannah: A Love Letter to Non-COM Classes

Dear non-COM classes,

It was not love at first sight. At first you seemed like pain in my butt. I came to Boston University to study advertising! Why am I taking history and English and statistics classes? You seemed silly and a waste of my time.

Yet as I got to know you I realized how you made a big impact on my college experience. Let’s start with our first date. I took playwriting as a writing requirement and oh boy, did we have a blast. I got to practice creative writing skills that I can pull out for creative advertising projects. You helped me realize that non-COM classes teach techniques that I can use in my COM classes and COM career. For example, I was able to practice in-depth reading, extensive writing and research.

Our second date was a gender & sexuality class. And guess what? I found a whole new passion! This class made me understand that I can’t be a communicator unless I have something to communicate about. It inspired me to start a sex positivity radio show on WTBU. Love Is On The Air is currently one of my favorite things I do on campus! 

For our third date, I was enchanted by two amazing history classes: one on the Italian Renaissance and one on U.S. History from 1890-1945. Not only did I find my minor, but I learned the pleasure of learning for the sake of learning. Yes, it’s true, I don’t really want a lifetime commitment, since I don’t plan to become a professional historian. But not all of college is about training for a job; it’s about being enlightened by captivating classes like you. Now, wherever I may travel, I can find connections to my history classes and have an overall feeling of understanding and let me tell you, that feeling is beautiful.

So, yes, I have fallen in love with you, non-COM classes. I have moved past my stubborn desire to be exclusively a COM nerd and have become a COLLEGE nerd. I now look forward to my non-COM classes because I know they will help me grow just as much as my COM classes.

Yours truly,
Hannah 

Hannah: Hey! Having A Roommate Isn’t All That Bad!

I grew up an only child. Because of this, I like to have my space. I got used to a quiet household and being alone in my room for hours. When I came to BU, I was super nervous about having a roommate. However, I am now pro-roommate! I currently share a double with CA Maddy and let me tell ya, we have the roommate situation DOWN. Here are a few reasons why I love having a roommate: 

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1. You have a shoulder to lean on (and you can be the shoulder too!)  

As the R.E.M. song states, “Everybody Hurts.” It is normal to get sad or overwhelmed with missing home, schoolwork, social pressures and so much more. I have burst into tears in my room and been lucky to have Maddy there to give me a hug. Even if you aren’t BFFs with your roommate, that person will be there for you! Even a small, “Hey, wanna talk?” can make all the difference. 

2. You develop open communication skills.

Everyone has a unique way of living. You are bound to disagree on something with your roommate and that is a-okay. If your roommate is doing something that isn’t your cup of tea, you learn to tell them how you feel and have a conversation to foster healthy compromises.

3. You learn how to take criticism.

Here’s a little secret. I was forgetting to turn off the lights in our dorm (ahh!) and Maddy texted me asking if I could start doing it. I’m happy she told me that! I was being a careless goose and now, because of her, I have minimized my global footprint.

4. You become more selfless.

When you are living with someone, you get a view into their world and this sparks empathy. When I am home, it’s not just me and my thoughts, I get to have conversations and observe how I am not the only person going through life’s normal struggles

5. You grow deeper friendships.

Not all roommates have to best friends for life, but I’m thankful to have a great friend in Maddy. However, because I live with her, we cannot physically talk all day every day. This grows our friendship because we are comfortable sitting in silence and enjoying each other’s company without social pressure.

6. You get design inspiration 

You get to see how someone else decorates and organizes their life. It’s like a real-world Pinterest and that’s pretty darn cool.

So the next time you say, “I have a roommate,” say it with pride! Roommates are dope and they don’t get enough credit. This one goes out to you, CA Maddy!Photo 2

 

Hannah: Feeling Homesick? Have No Fear, 7 Tips Are Here!

When I was applying to college, my main goal was to get away. Like Lady Bird, I had a dream of moving to the bustling east coast. The summer before starting at BU, I was antsy every day. I looked around me and thought, “Ugh, Michigan! I can’t wait to leave you!” I felt like I was so ready to be independent and sophisticated, no longer a naïve Midwesterner.

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Once I got to BU, however, I kept thinking about my home and family. Could it be? Was I actually homesick? Was I actually missing the Midwest??? I felt guilty for missing my lame Michigan dirt roads and strip malls when the brilliant Boston was my backyard.

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I hid this gross feeling of homesickness and pretended that I wasn’t feeling nostalgic. I later learned that being homesick is okay. A lot of people feel that way and it’s not immature or embarrassing. Here a few tips to get that icky feeling out of your stomach.

1. Discover Boston!

Homesickness is often brought about by boredom. Write a list of touristy places you want to see in Boston and try your best to go into the city once a week. The more you get to know Boston, the more it will feel like your second home. Check out the Museum of Fine Arts or walk around Harvard Square!

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2. FaceTime That Fam

Call your family once a week. This is a great reminder that although you are far away, you are still connected.

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3. Think About What You Love in Your Home and Find It in Boston

Boston is unbelievably diverse and probably has pretty much anything your home has. I was really missing the small funky shops of Ann Arbor, Michigan and later discovered that shopping in Cambridge had a similar feel. All you gotta do is some exploring.

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4. Stop Counting the Days

Put that calendar away! College is a journey and not a destination. When you stop thinking about how many weeks are left until break, you’ll be more in the moment and less homesick.

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5. Take Care of Yourself

When you are strung out and frazzled, all of your emotions are more intense. Remember to get enough sleep, exercise, eat healthy food and drink water so your physical state doesn’t negatively impact your mental state.

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6. Trust Yourself

You moved away for a reason! Remember why you chose BU and the things in your hometown that you wanted to move away from. Also, keep in mind that the things you miss are probably being exaggerated in your brain.

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7. Keep Company 

Whenever you feel that sad feeling, ask someone to lunch! Create your own little BU family. Also, it’s not weird if you ask someone out in a class or in a club that you don’t know that well. People want to make new friends! Don’t worry about it 😉

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8. List it Up!

Make a list of the things and people you miss at home. When you go home for break, try to hit all those things so you don’t miss them as much when you come back.

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Keep in mind that it is natural to miss your home. Whenever you feel sad, try to think of it as feeling thankful. Your home is completely yours; it is part of your personality and upbringing and that’s amazing!

To end this, I’m going to quote an incredible movie, Brooklyn. “Homesickness is like most sicknesses. It will pass.”

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