Melanie, the Director of Graduate Studies threw me a Happy Hour after work today. I invited my Music Department friends, 2 friends from my graduate program, and of course my husband. Melanie invited the faculty, staff, and graduate students.
Around 4:15pm, Nancy and I walked to the Porch together. We were the first ones to arrive. Caitlin, a Sociology graduate student met us outside, and so did Professor John. We went inside and got a table by the bar area, and pulled two tables together. I sat next to Nancy. Cindy, an administrator from History arrived and had a drink with us. Then Andrew (my husband), pulled a chair up and he ordered a drink. He was my ride home had no choice, but to attend. Professor John, Suzanne (acting chair), and Melanie all had wine or sangria to drink. The graduate students on the other side of me, Caitlin and Ellen were in attendance and had a beer of some kind. Also, in attendance were the three new graduate students I was happy to see them. I thought wow how nice!? I leaned into Melanie and said, “How nice the new cohort showed up for me.” Melanie smiled and said, “They are new and probably don’t have any friends, or do not know anyone” and then laughed. I nodded and smiled. Yea, she can’t even let me have a moment. Thank you for reminding me of one of the reasons I am leaving.
All of a sudden, in walked Professor Johnson, from my Music Department days. It felt full circle! I stood up and hugged him. Nancy was getting up to leave, so she gave him her seat. I was so happy to see him. He said I have to stop by and represent the Music Department! 🙂 Those days feel like so long ago! He stayed for one drink, then left.
Also, my friend Julia from my graduate school program showed up, and I stood up and gave her a hug. She squeezed in and sat next to me. I took AJ’s chair and gave Julia mine. We chatted about the program and the registrar department where she works. I was so touched by the people in attendance.
At the end of the happy hour, it was me, Drew, and the new graduate students. I offered to show them the building where they would receive their student IDs. We paid our tabs and then off we went. When we arrived at the towers, I told them that after Orientation, they will go there and get their IDs. I wished them luck in the program, and then it was off to home with my husband. One more day left in the Sociology Department!
When Andrew and I were walking to the car, I couldn’t help but just look up at the cathedral for a second and smile. I told Drew I think I want to stay on the Hail to Pitt side of things for a while. Ya know cheer on the Blue and Gold and be all about the Pitt panthers, be a fan, and a student. I don’t want to work on the faculty side of things again.