A Senior’s Autumn Nostalgia, Inspired by Bean Boots

As a senior who is consistently in denial that this is indeed my last year on the Heights, I’ve recently found myself (more frequently than I’d like to admit) reflecting nostalgically on my past three years at this institution, deep in the sentimentality as I realize I am so far past the prime of my life in Walsh Hall. (I kid. Kind of.) These sorts of dark—what my roommates and I have started to call “emo”—thoughts usually occur in the confines of an O’Neill third floor cubicle. This is, perhaps, a point worth noting because the setting plays a rather large part in the somber tones of these moments, particularly if I find myself in a cubicle that isn’t near a window, blocked off and isolated from the world—but that’s a whole other topic of conversation. Someone should make a Buzzfeed quiz: “What Your O’Neill Seating Choice Says About You.” Maybe next week. Anyway, moving on…

Fresh off the bus from my last regional tournament with the club soccer team, the impending doom of November gave me a fresh batch of all sorts of senior emotions to deal with. November claims the end of football season and the end of fall (although, hello global warming and 60-degree temperatures) while flashing a yellow light before the end of the semester and finals. The leaves fall, midterms seem never-ending, and Thanksgiving is a beacon of hope in the midst of it all. Three years ago, I had a countdown going from Columbus Day until Thanksgiving. Six full weeks to count, but it couldn’t come soon enough. The weeks dragged, the food sucked, and all I wanted was to sleep in my own bed and see my dog.

I still miss my dog, don’t get me wrong. But this fall, as I look back on my first half of first semester senior year, has me pumping the brakes before Thanksgiving. There’s honestly just nothing like the fall at Boston College.

First of all, campus is stunning. I shamelessly take Gasson grams on my way to class (Does everyone know about the app Huji? It’s a game changer!), trying to get the colorful leaves angled in with the right positioning of the sun. The tree-lined entrance by Stayer looks better than ever, and even Alumni Stadium on a crisp blue-skied day looks 10/10. Don’t even get me started on the Res: On clear days, with Boston as the backdrop to the colorful foliage, you might even forget you have a mile and a half to go on your run.

Most obviously, fall is football season—also known as the peak of BC school spirit. We all seem to rally around the games in a way that doesn’t necessarily happen at any other time of the year. Granted, that’s because of tailgating, but beyond that, the student body seems to collectively put emotional investment into football. We’re keeping tabs on injuries, following our ranking (at the time this was written, we’re holding onto No. 24), and analyzing each matchup as we intensely weigh how well our offense holds up to the defense and vice versa. Maybe it’s something about Addazio that gets us this hyped. Or, you know, maybe we’re just living the lives of your typical American college students—but we’ll give Daz the credit.   

Fall brings us the start of a new school year in the best way Boston can offer. We’re fresh with energy from the summer, happy to be back together, and the weather is warm (unlike the spring, when it seems to snow through April). The excitement from the freshmen (see past column re: my little brother) reinvigorates us 22-year-old geriatrics, classes aren’t too tough, and we’re all exploring and adjusting to our new housing situations. Fall brings us Head of the Charles, 5Ks, and half marathons. CAB goes nuts with events like trips to Salem, apple-picking, and Homecoming. There are new clubs to join at the Student Involvement Fair and endless activities to get involved with. And our parents swoop in for a weekend right when we think we can’t eat grilled chicken and two sides for one more night. There are no words to describe campus in these moments, but fall at BC is truthfully what I think of when I picture my favorite times at this school. (As a disclaimer, though, I did, in fact, miss the spring semester last year, so perhaps this is a skewed report.)

As the day turns dark at the beginning of my 4:30 classes rather than the end (making it that much harder to stay awake), we ditch iced coffees for hot lattes, and we start to pull out Bean Boots and parkas from our storage closets, things can get a little gloomy. I guess you could say we’re just a little too spoiled through September and October with all that’s presented to us upon our arrival here.

This is not to say there’s not plenty to look forward to for the rest of the year—I’m a huge fan of the tree lighting ceremony in the O’Neill Plaza, among other wintry events (Strip Mod, anyone?)—but fall at BC is definitely something special.

Featured Graphic by Anna Tierney / Graphics Editor