On the hunt for a new home, seeking graduate school with great coffee, better books, astounding architecture and a cohort of inspiring academics. I am touring graduate schools across the nation while I drive, and had to stop at Northwestern in Evanston, IL. So I took a whole day off by myself to drive up there and tour around the campus. But first, I grabbed coffee at Caffe Streets on Division to prepare myself for the adventure to come. Honestly, it has been really hard on me visiting graduate schools when my heart still belongs in Berkeley. I miss my academic home dearly and all of my friends who are still there. Nothing makes the sting of nostalgia more painful than the constant reminder of what you left behind by where you are going next. Trying to find a new home when I don’t want to give up the last is a brutal conditioning towards the constant change of my future. Despite my deep desire for everything to remain exactly the same, the world is shifting underneath my feet and I can either get off the crumbling rock or let my fear paralyze me.
The cup of coffee and an hour spent in contemplation of strangers walking down the street brought me back to reality: I had things to accomplish and places to see. I did make one more pit stop at an amazing bakery with zombie head cakes in the window before I left though. These mind-blowingly realistic cakes were courtesy of Alliance Bakery. I grabbed some breakfast and hit the road; this coastal drive was far different from the ones I was used to in California. Normally the ocean is my coastal companion, but this time Lake Michigan lined the road I drove on towards Evanston.
I toured the entire campus for several hours making some especially long stops at the English Department in University Hall and the main libraries, Deering and University Libraries.
The views all around campus where beautiful and very nicely accented by the fall leaves and the emerald hues of Lake Michigan. The gardens and greenery all around the campus were stunningly beautiful and the entire trip was exceedingly pleasant all around. I thoroughly enjoyed the school and everything the campus had to offer.
After walking the entire campus I finally (and begrudgingly) left Northwestern. However, when I got back to Chicago I visited another fantastic coffee shop in Pilsen called Cafe Jumping Bean, which served as the perfect end to a long day.