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As I’m writing these words, spring is beginning to blossom. Flowers flourish across campus, students find themselves staring aimlessly up at clouds from the lush grass, and many prefer to revitalize their favorite hobbies. In the case of myself and about… two other students, that pastime is surfing the concrete waves all around Glenside.
Although skateboarding around campus can be time-efficient and great exercise, I see it more as a liberating experience. After a winter slump, there’s nothing like gliding downhill, arms thrust against the wind with Tyler the Creator’s “Garden Shed” humming in both ears. Classes get overly stressful, especially around finals, and I’ve found no better alternative to let everything go for a while than to coast around campus on my board.
There’s also a large social side to skating at Arcadia. There feels like an unspoken respect when I see others skating past me, and I’ve always encouraged those afraid to start skating to join me. Spotting my friends at every corner of campus creates such a positive environment for me as I fly past them with a quick wave. It can be just as enjoyable to hear snippets of passing conversations from total strangers and the range of knowledge and understanding from various students.
Every lap around Haber Green leads to a whole new immersive event. The amount of times I’ve heard people blaring “Sk8er Boi” by Avril Lavigne on their personal speakers as I dash down The Walk of Pride is astounding. I’ll sometimes even find a group of friends I may not have seen and take a seat on my board and chat. Skating ultimately acts as a beacon for new opportunities that I might not have had otherwise. I think that plays a large part in why when the weather’s nice, it’s nearly impossible to find me doing much else.
Even carrying my board between classes can lead to intriguing conversations. Whether classmates want to try it out or just want to see me hit a trick, it acts as a great icebreaker. I’ve gotten a lot closer with some friends who are always walking around or lounging while I pass by.
As far as the skating environment goes, Arcadia’s campus is a great place for it. The roads are smooth with plenty of hills; I could honestly not get bored of it. With that in mind, I’m extra cautious, especially during the week, of walkers and cars. I try my best to communicate and respect where I skate and have never run into any issues over my three years of skating affairs.
Skateboarding makes me feel alive like nothing else, and considering it’s way too cold for a portion of the year, the spring allows me to burst with excitement about the hobby all over again. I always appreciate the positivity on campus as much as I like to express positivity of my own. I’d encourage everyone to find something that brings out the same joy as skating does for me. It provides a warmth that goes completely unrivaled, even on the sunniest spring day.