Besides finding out who my professors were and what my classes were like, I was very interested in what the food was like. I quickly found out that I would be spending as much time in the lunch room as I possibly could—because the food was delicious! And, if I remember correctly, you could come back for seconds. And the coffee was good too. In fact, I think I drank two cups of coffee for each meal. That’s six cups a day—more than I’ve ever consumed.
The campus was great too, old but great. Its oldest buildings, Nazareth Hall, and then later Riley Hall, use to be a preparatory Catholic Seminary. The most beautiful is its chapel—with huge marble pillars and stained-glass windows. I think my most memorable times at Northwestern were those times when I hung out with friends to study and chat. The library was one of those places, and I would always study at the same table where the same group would be. It was good to meet with friends, even though we didn’t talk much—we were all committed to studying.
In my first year at Northwestern I joined the band, and also the wrestling team. But after a while both of those activities went away. I don’t know what happened with the band; I guess I just didn’t have time for it. But I remember all too well what happened with wrestling. I was working out with this little guy, and well, I broke one of my ribs. It was sort of a freak accident. When it came to the next wrestling contest, the coach bandaged me up, but it really didn’t help much. I was in so much pain that I had to forfeit the match. I loved wrestling, but I knew I had to quit. I couldn’t compete. Maybe it was for the best. Maybe God was guiding me to be more focused on my studies.
The only other extra activities that I can think of was being a security guard for the school and working in maintenance. I really liked the maintenance job. I mainly worked in the wood shop repairing chairs. All I did was take the chairs apart and re-glue them. The security job was not as enjoyable. It was a pain, and it gave me a reputation around school as a mean guy. My job was to walk around at night and check to see if anyone was breaking the rules. I basically was supposed to look with a flashlight into all the parked cars and other dark areas to check and see it there were any couples doing things they weren’t supposed to do. No necking! That was the campus rules. I was glad to finely quiet that job—and I don’t think I was even getting paid for it. I don’t remember how the Dean of Men talked me into it.