The last of my travelogues from my trip to the Bay Area two weeks ago . . .
International House is a dorm for graduate students and upperclassmen at the University of California, Berkeley. It's affectionately known by all as I House. It sits at the southeastern corner of campus, high on the top of a hill, with a view of the bay. About half of the residents are American, and the other half are international students.
Creating an international community is what I House is all about, and over the years many programs have been created to facilitate that goal. There are coffee hours, language tables in the cafeteria, lectures, and even dance classes.
I House has been around since 1930 with many notable alumni, including John Kenneth Galbraith, California Governor Jerry Brown, and me. I lived there for a semester and a half, and I loved it until I didn't anymore. It was a wonderful place with wonderful people, many of whom are still friends, but it was still a college dorm.
Walking through the building felt both familiar and strange. The great hall, the chatter of the residents and notices on the bulletin boards were the same, but I was different, of course. I no longer live there or anywhere nearby, I was just a tourist.
It's easy to get nostalgic, remembering many stories. In fact, both my twenty-first birthday party and my first meeting with my honey happened in that building. I'm glad I got the chance to experience life there. Who knows what my life might have been like without I House in it?
Note: Dedicated readers of this blog will be interested to know that it was this blog post I was working on last week when it disappeared.