As is always the case, reading period and finals have once again snuck up on me this semester – and per usual, the week has been jam packed with all sorts of events, meetings, and assignments. While reading period is meant to be a “break,” a time when students can catch up on end-of-the-semester assignments and start studying for exams, it always ends up turning into a really crazy time of year, both because of all of the fun, social events going on and because of the immense amounts of work we’re all expected to do. Over the next week, I’ll be finishing a 25 page term paper, plus another 10 page paper, plus two take home finals, plus a problem set, plus an application for thesis approval… You get the picture. On the upside, though, I’ve gotten to break up the week with various events and wanted to take this blog post to highlight just one – the Dunster formal.
Each of the 12 Houses has a formal each semester, and Dunster’s spring formal happens in a tent in our courtyard. We call it “Beltane,” after a Gaelic spring festival celebrated in Ireland. The hallmark of the event is the IMMENSE amounts of flowers that decorate the inside of the tent, which really makes the whole thing feel like a spring festival. This year, I spent a few hours in the morning making the flower arrangements that got hung around the room and constructing a flower arch to go above the door. My roommate is HoCo (House Committee) Chair and therefore was in charge of planning the entire event, so it was fun to be able to help her out for a bit and gain some appreciation for how much work goes into preparing events like this (read: it’s a LOT).
The night started out with a reception in the Dunster Junior Common Room, and then everyone moved outside for dancing and some food. We had a swing band for the first hour, but then music switched over to a DJ – both were super good! While some people will bring official dates to House formals, students for the most part tend to go with roommates or groups of friends, which makes for a really fun vibe on the dance floor. Also, while the majority of people at each formal are from whatever House is hosting it, we can all go to each other’s formal, which means there’s a nice mix of people there. The House formals are definitely one of my favorite things that go on around campus – such a fun reminder of how excited I am about Dunster and what a great community of people live here. I remember going as a freshman, right after I’d gotten into the House, and starting to get so excited about moving up to an upperclassman House – glad to see that Dunster’s lived up to expectations!
Now, back to the paper writing! Wish me luck!
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