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First Impressions of Williams

By this I actually mean the campus, not the school generally (nor anything one would glean from the absurdity of recent Ephblog posts).  The previous, ahem, “discussion” about buildings and the various architectural styles, as well as running through the Facilities Property Book made me think about my first trip down Route 2 and into town.

I was coming from the Boston area and out along Route 2 in mid-late August.  Some bits of leaves were already beginning to change color, and I have to admit it was one of those picture perfect New England afternoons.  I loved the varied styles of the buildings, the (to my naive eyes) adorable quaintness of having essentially one street of business in town, the iconic Congo Church.  And as quick as anything, we were already through town and passing curving southward down toward the Clark.

I remember being charmed, intrigued, a bit surprised there weren’t more obvious “foresty” areas given that I had read about Hopkins Forest in the catalog (my recall of the campus map was less than perfect – hey, I was 16).

I forget where we stayed, but the woman recommended Hobson’s Choice for dinner; Mom & I had a  great dinner.  It remains one of my favorite Billsville restaurants.  The next morning we wandered around campus, shopped on Spring St. (had to get something from Goff’s of course), and had breakfast at the Cobble Cafe (sadly, no more).

What do any of you remember about your first trip to Williams?

Can I make this post take up any more space to move other things down the page?

Yes. ;)

** Portions of this may have appeared in an earlier comment to another post, I can’t remember.

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#1 Comment By nuts On July 27, 2009 @ 1:40 pm

Williamstown: all dressed up and ready to go, as presented on MySpace.

#2 Comment By Mike On July 27, 2009 @ 1:44 pm

The first time I ever visited Williams, Edgardo Alfonzo went 6-for-6 to lead the Mets to victory over the Astros during the magical 1999 season.

#3 Comment By Ronit On July 27, 2009 @ 1:48 pm

First impression for me was of a damp, dreary evening, the day before the start of school, when the campus was almost completely deserted. Very depressing.

#4 Comment By rory On July 27, 2009 @ 1:48 pm

I remember the carnival as a child and the “long” 2 hour trip out there to go visit. Good times as a kid, but sad to see it leave.

As a college prospect, I remember staring at my tour guide’s hot coffee thermal mug, specifically while walking past the President’s house to Baxter (I hadn’t seen anyone except construction workers with something like that before. I immediately desperately wanted one) in the snow and marveled at her ability to walk backward in the falling snow.

It was beautiful with about 4 inches of snow and our tour guide was enjoying the snow and the tour, which came the day after a disastrous visit to Amherst (the two guides looked pissed to be touring in the snow…granted, I was pissed also, but cmon guys! Then they talked about how “conservative” Amherst’s academic program was, which both confused me and irritated me. It was conservative? It didn’t have requirements! WTF?).

#5 Comment By JeffZ On July 27, 2009 @ 1:55 pm

I wish I could recall. I think I am just too old. All I know is, before I visited, Amherst was my first choice, and after the visit, I was suddenly applying ED to Williams …

#6 Comment By Larry George On July 27, 2009 @ 4:17 pm

I came on trust, from the South. It was a clean, clear cool late summer day, shortly before I was to begin college. We rode past the Hopper and on, passing funny, rocky, hilly little fields. And then we were in town, with the Congo and the stone area (Thompson, the gym, Goodrich, and Morgan) and the observatory and the columns and the white buildings (the President’s House and the Inn) and the fraternity-buildings-that-Thank-God-obviously-weren’t and the old brick buildings and the mishmash of architectural styles and periods and the lawns and that bowl of mountains that were to become part of my soul. It all captured my heart, just as knowing that I was entering a land of really smart people who took learning seriously captured my mind.

I should trust more often…

#7 Comment By tinydancer On July 28, 2009 @ 12:37 am

The first time I ever visited Williams, my car broke down in the Field House parking lot. It was attended to by a deaf-in-one-ear tow truck driver, who (no joke) used a paper clip to fix it and told us to “not slow down until you get home”… certainly a memorable trip.

#8 Comment By kthomas On July 29, 2009 @ 2:59 am

It was April of 1988, just before the final snowfall of the year. I flew into Albany on a Thursday afternoon. Amy Pokras and Christy were already there, waiting for the shuttle. Chad would show up soon.

We followed Route 7 in, sitting in the back, peering out the windows, chatting, talking about the trees and the winding road and the ponds.

On that Sunday morning, the tulips on the President’s lawn poked through the snow.

The Kane, the Kane, Mr. Kurtz, the Kane, he.