Day 1: Habitat for Humanity Collegiate Build

Saturday, March 10 – Sleepy Bus Rides and Honky Tonk Dinners

“What are you looking forward to the most about the trip?”
“Bonding” -Maggie Arseneault

Today’s the day! After packing- and in my case, over-packing- up my cheap (and incredibly unflattering) work jeans, some big-box store work boots that are half a size too big because my cheap self refused to pay twice as much for the shoes that fit perfectly, a few old T-shirts, and a metric ton of sunscreen, I figured I was as ready as ever for ASB! Waiting for us outside the Hansen Student Center were three Illinois Wesleyan vans all gassed up and prepared for our long trek to Alabama. There were eight of us in the van I picked, and to get the trip rolling, we plugged the Rocky Theme Song in the aux cord; just like that, we were on our way.

Although we were off to a great start with loud, fun music and lots of snacks (I ate an entire bag of Goldfish before we even got on the interstate), the mood in our van quickly turned sleepy. Within 30 minutes of hitting the road, the entire van zonked out until lunch which was at a Wendy’s somewhere in southern Illinois. After our frostys and chicken nuggets, it was time to get started on the road again. The second time in the van didn’t go much differently than the first- everyone passed out within minutes for a very quiet and peaceful drive to our final destination of the day: Nashville.

The second we pulled into the city with flashing lights on every corner, live music, and the smell of southern cooking, everyone in the van immediately perked up. We were in awe of the vivacity and beauty of the city. After our long drive, we finally nestled into our restaurant for dinner: Nashville Underground. Here, the ASBers ordered the restaurant’s famous barbecue and delicious mac n’ cheese. With our dinners, we were treated with live music from a Nashville cover band… I like it, I love it, I want some more of it… Needless to say, each and every one of us left the restaurant happy and full.

After dinner, we had some free time before heading to our hotel for the night. The group I went with wandered around on one of the main bridges overlooking the Cumberland River just taking in all of the bright lights and the strumming of guitars. Although today was mostly consumed with driving, the ASBers managed to make every situation more positive, funny, and memorable. As for tonight, we are using the extra comfort of the hotel to catch up on our sleep for the week ahead- and I think we’ll need it considering tonight, the clocks spring forward an hour, leaving us with one less hour of precious sleep.

– Teagan Potter ’19

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