It’s a dog eat dog world out there” she screamed and “I’m wearing milk-bone underwear!!
Last day of the quote challenge and I had so much fun remembering this quote and the time period that accompanied it. Please enjoy and Happy Sunday! Thank you to Faraday’s Challenge for inviting me to this challenge and now I challenge Mommy Lanes Adventures.
Kate walked into the apartment and slammed the door, took her heavy backpack off and exhaled before telling us her story.
She’d been walking down Frat Row, passing the many fraternities with their unkempt grass lawns and disheveled front doors and shrubbery. She had stopped only because she happened to see a woman’s purse laying on the ground in front of her on the sidewalk and thought- someone’s lost their purse- let me see if there’s an ID inside so I can return it to the owner. But instead of finding an ID, what she found was a pile of what I truly hope was dog shit inside the purse. This was Berkeley after all and anything, I mean anything could have been possible. She screamed in disgust and flung the purse far away from her. By the time she arrived at our apartment on Dwight Way, she was boiling mad and fed up with how difficult and overwhelming college life seemed to be.
We were in our 3rd and 4th undergraduate college years at UC Berkeley living in a 4 bedroom flat that could have been the International House (I-House). All of us in one place for a short but critical period of our lives- having taken so many different journeys to get there.
Will- the aspiring attorney who liked adding kidney beans to his spaghetti sauce and spent his days debating philosophy at cafes and had grown up in the middle-class black suburbs of LA(yes, they exist).
Ben- the hard-core architect who loved building anything and photography. He hailed from Sacramento and dated a Catholic girl which would have been fine if he wasn’t Jewish. It led to some interesting late-night conversations.
Linda- my bestie who I met during freshman orientation days who on that day told me she was going to medical school and would be a doctor. Japanese-Mexican and another So-Cal girl, we bonded instantly. To this day, I don’t know how she did it, but the girl did not sleep and I would find her every night watching television all night always awake and studying biology, physics, the infamous o-chem class, in-between blue screens. She always cried if she pulled out anything less than a B in class. How was she going to get into medical school she wailed? I secretly thought, hmmm – maybe you should stop watching all that television. But I always kept my mouth shut. Who was I to judge?
And there was Kate of course. Kate hailed from the land of Encino, California and had worked her ass off at 2-year community college to get the coveted position of transfer student to UC Berkeley. But all Kate talked about was Dooney & Burke purses and her boyfriend Tim who she would surely marry right after graduation because their parents were life-long friends. Kate dreamt of getting out of college as quickly as possible so she could get on with the rest of her life. “I wish I could just wake up and be like 28 years old, married to Tim and pregnant with the first kid.” College life was not what she thought it would be so she dreamt of what she was sure were better days ahead.
I think about some of these characters sometimes. I wonder how life has worked out for them. If it turned out the way they thought it would.
After burning out in Los Angeles corporate law firms, Will moved to London and met a French girl. Last we heard, they were expecting. Ben moved back to Sacramento and married his Catholic girl- it was a beautiful non-denominational ceremony but the marriage unfortunately did not make it. Ben re-married and has a beautiful little girl and thrives as an architect contractor in the Sacramento area. He actually designed and built his own house and his stuff is AH-mazing. Linda not only ended up going to medical school but she kept going- never stopping and she’s a heart surgeon working in Hawaii. She invited me to her wedding but unfortunately I was 8 months pregnant at the time and unable to go. Bummer. I would love to visit her in Hawaii and see her again and ask if she still watches all that television. Perhaps in-between surgeries?
Well, the funny thing is that after graduation she sure did move back to Encino. But then I heard she broke up with Tim and had found great career success in the area of commercial real estate. Berkeley had changed her after all, even though she hadn’t realized it. She turned out to be a big corporate monster. I’m actually going to go look her up right now because I know her life turned out to be the opposite of what she thought it would.
But I wonder– is she still wearing milk-bone underwear?!