10:17 p.m.

No, I don't work here...

Orientation wasnít anything like I expected Ė it was worse.

I was literally the only one there who a) was over 18, b) didnít have a mommy or a daddy with me, and c) was alone.

The day started off with checking in and eating breakfast. Personally, I almost never have breakfast, so that part was extremely boring. We then had a quick tour of the building we were in and were herded like cattle into a lecture room. I glanced around the room to see if I really was the only one over 18 (excluding the parents); it was true, I was. At one point in time I thought I had found a comrade, but it turned out to be someoneís father. The speaker was a graduate student talking about how college isnít like high school; people wonít hold your hand and force feed you information to memorize. She then went on to emphasize the importance of registering to vote. I quit listening about that time. I was too enthralled with looking around the room at the other freshmen. I wondered if they were as frightened as I was. I wanted to know what they thought of me Ė Whoís the old chick sitting alone? They all seemed so...similar.

The parents were asked to leave and it was time for the dreaded math placement test. I had decided that I was only answering the questions I knew exactly how to do. Iím pretty good at getting to an answer in a very round about way, but figured if I didnít know how to do it the proper way, I was leaving it blank. I left a lot blank.

Next, we were split into smaller groups according to major to meet our advisor. I went with the whole other eight kids who claimed engineering of some sort as their intended major. From the looks of it Ė engineering is a pretty dorky major. We met our advisor Ė Chris - who, though probably younger than me, was pretty cute in a weird geeky sort of way. He talked a mile a minute about his office hours, where he was located, what to go see him for, and how helpful he could be. Once again, I zoned out because he started talking about high school. I should really get the whole ďzoning outĒ thing under control. I suppose when the information is actually relevant to me somehow Ė as in I need to learn it Ė Iíll do better.

After the whole spiel, we were given a little more of a campus tour, however it was raining, so it went quite quickly. Off to lunch for us. I remember why I hated cafeteria food. It lacks any flavor what so ever. I skipped lunch and went outside to smoke. I donít think Iíve ever needed nicotine more than I did right then. I continued to read the Independent, and was thoroughly outraged at its portrayal of the Pikes Peak Humane Society. The article was absolute nonsense and full of false information. But thatís a topic for another day.

Finally, the lectures and the pep talks were through and it was actually time to register for classes. I met with Chris to discuss which classes I should take. I told him I had been out of school for eight years; he looked dumbfounded. He suggested I take the minimum of 12 hours to be considered full time; I think he thought I couldnít handle anymore. He proceeded to tell me that I had passed the calculus exam and could be placed in Calculus II, but suggested I take college algebra as a refresher. Had I not felt the same, I might have been offended. I easily placed higher in English due to my ACT score, but he suggested I take the easier English because it really didnít matter which class I took; it wasnít mandatory for my major. Next up Ė Chemistry. Now, the prerequisite for Chem 104 was 1 year of high school chemistry. I easily met that, I had taken chemistry and physics in high school, but he suggested Chem 115 (preparatory chemistry). ďAs a refresherĒ. Ok, I was getting annoyed. I had to set him straight. I told him that even though itís been eight years, Iím not a moron, nor am I afraid of working hard to get back into the swing of things. I donít need to be treated like a Special Ed student simply because I donít fit the profile of a typical freshman. He backed down and actually started treating me with a little respect. I got Chem 104. He suggested if Iíd like to get 16 credit hours I could take Philosophy-Critical Thinking and Computer Science to meet one of the engineering elective requirements. I choose to take both.

Basically, my schedule is Monday through Thursday around 9am until about 4pm. Iím working Fridays and Saturdays. Sundays Ė well, thatís my only salvation.

So, there you go. Tell me I canít do something, and Iíll do it just to spite you. Now excuse me while I go cuss myself for doing this.

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