Foraging

Brittany L. Strachota
 

It certainly could have become an award-winning nature documentary. The setting: Olin College of Engineering (might as well be our natural environment). Springtime. Birds are beginning to chirp. Rain is beginning to fall. Many are flying south (or wherever home may be), but a few remain in this Boston suburb, left with only their instincts and an adult tricycle.

Our days over spring break were generally carefree...until dinnertime. Like most animals (and like a large proportion of these blog posts), as the sun approached the horizon, all thoughts and all efforts turned to food. Just before our dining hall staff left for the week, the simmering undertones of panic began to reach the boiling point. Stockpiles formed, calls for grocery store runs reverberated through the halls (well, there were a bunch of emails sent, anyway), and suddenly, everything on our meal plan looked absolutely mouth-watering.
The means of procuring sustenance varied from night to night. Our methods became more sophisticated as the week drew on, but we began as cavemen bashing two stones together haphazardly. We weren't entirely sure of what would happen when we tried to cook on the dorm's stove and weren't about to take any chances. Safety glasses were donned for the preparation of some pierogies that had been sitting in my freezer.

kitchen_glasses.jpgSeveral expectant stomachs complained about the 9:30 dinner time, but were happy to be fed in the end.

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Expectant...
pierogies1.jpg...happy!
At the conclusion of a progression of take-out and tuna salad, the menfolk decided to light up the grill between the dorms. (Admittedly, the tuna salad was quite tasty.)

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Of course, they still made me ride along to the store to do the shopping. This required the use of the tricycle, complete with basket. After a bit of cheese and zucchini drama/debate, we came back and rounded up the troops to prepare the food. Only nine[teen] burns later, we had food! And it was edible. And guess what, Mom! We even ate vegetables.

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The goods.

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I may not have traveled to exotic locale, but I had a few adventures nonetheless. It's a brutal world out there, survival of the fittest. Engineering students, left to fend for themselves out in the wilderness, will use the tools at their disposal...even if there is nothing more than an oversized trike and some matches. We may not use them in the way they are intended to be used, but undoubtedly, something will happen.

Posted in: Class of 2013