Cassie and Chris
When every waking moment (and sleeping too) is spent with the same eleven individuals, one gets to know his/her companions well. Breakfast is littered with tales of the previous night's dreams, almost always starring fellow Arcadians. A few of us have even gained the ability to anticipate who will enter the kitchen based on the sound of the approaching footsteps. We know who will be up before the sun, reading in the loft, and who will nap straight through a dinner bell and need a wake-up call. We even understand the farting patterns of the majority of Arcadians. In outer words, we know each other well.
Over the past few months, we have discovered that everyone has his/her own trademark habits, mannerisms, and idiosyncrasies. Below are a few of the trademarks for each Arcadian: Krysia is the on-site crocheting master. So far, she has created four chunky hats, two of which have pom-poms. They are gifts as well. Levi and Dave both don the work of the master's quick hands and hook. She can complete a hat in under an hour's time, and every Arcadian knows that if something goes awry with their own crocheting projects, Krysia is the go-to-gal.
Emilie has a satchel full of various chirps and chirrups that she expertly releases at perfect moments throughout the day. Her characteristic high-pitched giggle has the ability to reach all the way to the tip of Townline pond. She is exuberant.
Levi is a storm. It is evident that he is always on a mission, passing through doors with an eager gusto, like an untamed tornado. No matter what, all heads turn when this guy throws open the door.
Tom has a healthy obsession with lichen. If you stumble across a fascinating specimen make sure to point it out to Tom, for you will get to watch his face light up, and recover an enthusiastic response of "Ah, cool!" Recently, his interest has traveled into the kitchen, where several species of lichen and moss have found a home inside a milk jug terrarium, our table's centerpiece.
Lindsay has a mild obsession as well, only hers has everything to do with large, orange -toothed rodents. Yes, if you ever have a question about local Massawepie beavers, Lindsay will know the answer and then insist that you come with her on her next visit to see the family of seven. She'll be sure to point out each lodge, the biggest beaver, Dudley, and if you're lucky, the baby beaver, as well.
Dave is a tea epicurean. It is quite probable to find him cupping a warm mug between his hands, pondering over a steamy cup at breakfast and sipping earl grey or black Lipton lose leaf on field trips. He will not drink Jasmine green, and thinks wild sweet orange is vile, but will cozy up with a cup of chamomile anytime.
Courtney is in love, yes, in love with her purple one-sie. It is no longer a shock to see the mass of unnatural color in the midst of the woods. This outfit is quite versatile, perfect for both snuggling and transforming into the one-eyed one-horned, flying purple-people-eater: two of her favorite pastimes without a doubt, Courtney is the epitomy of the Arcadian fashion statement.
Matthew pays close attention to his meal preparation. At breakfast, he bites his almonds and cashews in half before mixing them into his oatmeal-flaxseed- peanut butter concoction. His dinner plate is always a conglomerate of veggies and grain, with bread or a wasa to wipe up his "scrapie wapies".
Luke is the handyman of the group. He always jumps at the opportunity to assist in a fix when help is needed. Need help changing that propane tank? Call Luke on over. Luke's your man. And if you ever need a lesson on how best to split some kindling, I assure you, Luke can help.
Missy is a knitting queen. When in doubt, you can find her needle in hand, sitting beside a woodstove. She started our journey with the goal of knitting a blanket before the end of the semester, and as I write this, she is working on the last section. Soon she will be napping under her beloved creation.
Chris is a comfort. Just when you are feeling a bit alone in a room or the woods, Chris will come up behind you and clasp a firm hand on a shoulder, gently rocking you back and forth, when you turn to look at her, she meets your gaze with kind eyes, and a quizzical look. She is always there when your shoulder is in need of a firm squeeze, to remind you that everything is ok.
Cassie loves to cook, and more specifically, experiment with her cooking. Just today she put together a concoction of cranberries, raisins, milling spices, and apple cider vinegar that when boiled on the woodstove, released a sickening smell that successfully drove most Arcadians from the kitchen. Not all of her experiments are so potent, though. The yogurt she bred from some souring mild has become a staple for Tom every morning at breakfast. He claims to really love "that...that...that kick" to it.
Although we all have fuzzy legs, not every moment is as warm and fuzzy as we are. Sometimes, living so close, we become quite irritated with our fellow comrades; however, by recognizing our quirks, and chuckling at their frequency, we can settle down to dinner, knowing that we all fit in to this Arcadian community.