Saturday, November 15, 2008

Princeton Memories

I'm feeling more than a little homesick for Princeton today... my home for the four best years of my life :) November was usually a little dreary; the sun was nowhere to be seen for weeks at a time, it rained constantly and winter was fast approaching but I loved watching the leaves turn color. Newly laundered, the leaves glowed like polished jewels; crimson, gold and every shade in between.

I'd be running to class attempting to avoid the puddles and the rivulets while trying unsuccessfully to hold open my umbrella in the wind. Finally I'd abandon the attempt, pull the hood of my trench coat over my head and continue speed-walking with the rain streaming down my face...

Usually, I'd make it to class with a couple of minutes to spare. I loved the seminars (and the precepts if I'd done the reading) and the one-on-one chats with my professors. My freshman seminar, "A Biography of Energy" was taught by Prof. Richard Golden. The first day, we went around and introduced ourselves.. When it was my turn, he commented on my accent and correctly guessed that I was from Karachi.

Professors at Princeton were genuinely interested in what we had to say. They treated us as equals, not as precocious undergrads and pretty soon we were on first-name basis. At first, it seemed strange to call my 80-year old professor, "Dick" since I'd grown up in an environment where the teacher was to be accorded the utmost respect but I gradually got used to it, just as I got used to saying "trash can" instead of "dustbin" and asking for pizza "to-go" instead of "parcel" or "take-away" :)

No comments:

Post a Comment