The 5 Senses of North Dining Hall

I had a meeting in the North Dining Hall today, so I arrived a bit early and decided to peoplewatch in the seating area by Starbucks.  As we periodically do at the Daily Deac, here is a description of the time using the five senses.

I see…

  • Twelve or thirteen clusters of seating groups near the Starbucks.  It’s a mixture of a couple sofas,  big modern armchairs and larger tables, and leather round stools.  All but one seating area was occupied.
  • Of the students there, 4-5 of them had laptops open and were working on them.  One girl was simultaneously looking at her laptop and texting on her smartphone.
  • A group of students, mostly male, all in business suits.  They appeared to be prepping for either an interview or a group presentation.
  • TONS of boots on young women.  In fact, at one point I counted and of all the girls there (maybe 20), only 2 were not wearing boots.  And very tight pants, like riding breeches.
  • Lots of dark clothing – dark jeans, black coats, or dark greens and navies.  Finally a girl with a red coat comes in to break the monochromatic feel.
  • One young man walking outdoors (in the freezing cold) in a down puffer jacket and gym shorts.  (Why???)
  • Red cheeks as people come in from the cold.

I hear…

  • Mostly this is a quiet group.  Only one of the seated groups – a guy and a girl – are talking.  
  • The click of thick heeled boots on a girl as she walked across the floor.
  • Cellophane wrappers being opened.  That crinkly plastic sound.  It seems louder because everyone else is relatively quiet.
  • The voice of a girl who approached as I was taking notes.  She asked if I minded her joining my table (we had 3 seats).  I said yes, but that I would have someone else joining me shortly.  She said thanks and decided to get another seat with another person.
  • Paper Starbucks bags rattling as students open up their muffins or donuts.
  • A young woman describing a friend who had ordered a ridiculously complicated drink (“no water, no chai, no this, no that”)

I smell…

  • COLD air.  Very cold.
  • Not much else, surprisingly.  I had expected to smell the normal Starbucks smell of strong coffee, but there is not really any of that.  There are entrance doors from either end of the Starbucks area, and I suspect that the constant opening and closing of doors chases the smell out.
  • Every once and awhile, I get a strong whiff of vinegar.  No clue where that is coming from.

I feel…

  • COLD!  Every time the doors open from either side, it makes a wind tunnel.  The Starbucks baristas must be freezing.

I taste…

  •  My delicious coffee (thank you, baristas!)

There you have it, Deac families!  I was there from about 10:35 until my meeting at 11 am,  just long enough for a brief snapshot of the day.  And for what it is worth, I really like the North Dining Hall.  I ate at Bistro ’34 for the first time the other day and my food was delicious and perfectly cooked.  I also tried Hilltop Market and the wok/grille area was tasty.

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