November 11, 2009

Claiming the WC for Ourselves

The WC has a new energy. Our director, the always-planning, often-stressed woman in charge of us, was chipper this morning, admiring the graffiti wall we began yesterday on a whim. My little white board with greetings in various languages sparked a spontaneous graffiti session on the wall by the check-in computer. Raquel from Brazil, a woman from Mexico and Yumeko from Japan all happened to be in the WC at that moment. I thought I was dreaming as we came together on the wall, uniting, it felt like, the world. We wrote in our respective languages with thick black sharpie on the blank wall. It was everything I love about the WC crammed into 30 seconds. We were smiling and laughing, speaking a handful of languages, and enjoying our diversity.

Since then, Collin and I have been recruiting everyone to write something on the wall. I took the liberty of writing my favorite Collin quote right above his workspace: "Do you feel closer to the clouds?" There's something wonderful about a slightly off-center, could've-been-better-written string of words on a wall. Every time I look at Collin now, I remember driving on I-90 watching the big sky, and Collin's expressions filling our quote log.

Above my workspace, I took Toni Morrison to the wall. Everytime I look up, she challenges me to write the story I want to read, and every time, I can't wait to be the well-groomed, female version of Anthony Bourdain (check him out on the Travel Channel).

One of my regulars had an appointment today--Ayumi from Japan. She's a Phys Ed. major who is working hard in English Composition. At the end of the consultation, she found out that I was graduating in December. She expressed her disappointment, and told me how much she would miss me. Then she told me how popular I am among the Japanese students and how they talk about me sometimes. It was so satisfying to hear that kind of feedback. Between the graffitti wall and the compliments, I couldn't have been any happier. I think I actually hallucinated for a while.

I should enjoy it while I can. The WC is my home for another month, then I've got to move on.