Several years ago, I attended a performance of Samuel Beckett’s play Waiting for Godot. It’s about two characters, Vladimir and Estragon, who wait for Godot. They’ve been waiting for a period of time. Godot isn’t able to make it that day but will instead come tomorrow. They want to leave but are seemingly unable, as they must wait for Godot. There is nothing to be done but wait.

I’m graduating university over video in a time of plague and misfortune, into a country that’s falling apart and an industry roiling with uncertainty, not to mention amid ongoing protests and justified civil unrest against police brutality. It sucks, of course, but also feels so incredibly anticlimactic. Dystopic, even.

Even though my time at Northwestern is over, I feel as though I am in a sort of stasis. I’m waiting for things to go back to “normal.” I’m waiting for my life and career to continue. I’m waiting for justice. I feel optimistically nihilistic that things will actually get better, and yet I must wait for something that may never come. I’m waiting for my personal Godot.

But still.

I have enjoyed my time at Northwestern, for the most part. It’s an incredible privilege to attend this university, and I feel like I’ve come away from these four years a better person.

Here are some of the things I will miss, both large and small:

The thrill of low-stakes student journalism drama

Taking classes and doing all the readings (I know, I know) for my history double major

Long late-night conversations with friends

Always facing east on the Red and Purple lines to get the best view of the city

Sometimes deciding to face west on the Red or Purple lines, to change it up

Lake Michigan

Late nights on the second floor of McTrib

NBN fundies and their evolution into open mics

Podcasting and writing and editing and (executive) editing for NBN

The different views from every ‘L’ platform

The view from the Lakefill

The view from the John Hancock Center, aka the Not-Sears Tower

The view of Chicago from a plane

Living in CRC as a freshman

Shucking corn in Wisconsin for Patty Loew’s class on reporting on Native American communities

Jaywalking on Sheridan Road by the Arch around at 1 a.m. when there are no cars

Finally getting into “Acting for Non-Majors” as a senior to relive my high school theater kid days

The Chicago flag

Chicago in general

Living in D.C. in our grungy six-person rowhouse Airbnb in Columbia Heights (truly a Top House) for Medill on the Hill

Interning at 90.5 WESA in Pittsburgh, and hearing my voice broadcast on the local packages of “All Things Considered”

The thrill of moving into my very own apartment

Studying abroad and living in Hong Kong in fall 2018, when optimism about the city’s future was still possible

Taking “History of Tourism” while on exchange at HKU and getting my big 18-page final research paper on public transport as a tourist attraction in Hong Kong to count as my Northwestern history 395 credit

Student discounts

Custom Slack reacts

Libby Berry’s cat, Stella

Dillo Day

Working for CalMatters on my JR and living in Sacramento during the last months of normalcy before the world fell apart

The Art Institute, and Lurie Garden just across the street

The National Museum of Mexican Art, especially the car-sized mural made of thousands of individually glued beads

The Chicago Architecture Center

The joy of visiting Garfield Park Conservatory in the winter, and the thrill of visiting in the summer when the outside gardens are alive

My seven months as a flower delivery driver

Exploring random neighborhoods in Chicago

Biking from Evanston to Grant Park on the lakefront trail

Discovering new music and going to my first concert

NBN merch, and the futility of wishing for shot glasses

Movie screenings in Norris

Plays, shows and improv at the Black Box

Campus after a fresh snowfall

The Lakefill on the first nice day of spring

The S.S. Bienen

The gothic charm of Deering Library, and the Brutalist charm of Main

The top of the visitors center parking garage

Calling the Kellogg Global Hub by its proper name, The Glass Castle

Sea Ranch, La Cocinita, 10Q, Tomate, Andy’s, Cheesie’s, the Chipotle on Church street (don’t @ me), Small Cheval, MingHin, El Milagro, Kizuki, Cafecito, the Peckish Pig, and countless other restaurants

That one visit to Lighthouse Beach with friends at the end of spring quarter

The idea of painting a rock on the Lakefill during my final spring quarter

The idea of Senior Spring, or at least a final spring quarter on campus

My partner, friends, acquaintances, enemies (lol), and everyone in between