Semester 37: Fall Has Begun!

Classes have really picked up the pace here at HMI! In English, we finished reading A River Runs Through It by Norman Maclean, learned how to cast a fly-fishing rod in order to gain a deeper understanding of the story, and moved on to reading Ceremony by Leslie Marmon Silko. In USHistory, we have continued to investigate the system of education we’re all a part of and how our idea of what History is shapes our world views, our values, and how we learn. In Spanish, we’re reading The Distance Between Us by Reyna Grande and exploring how themes of the book connect to immigration, globalization, and the social issues that are most prevalent in our society today. In Practices and Principles, we read The Land Ethic by Aldo Leopold after reflecting on how each of us identifies with nature. We continue to have in-depth and clarifying discussions about influential and impactful writings on the natural world. In one particular math class, Pre-Calculus, students are diving deeper into sin and cosine waves, connecting them to weather patterns, musical notes, and more. Lastly, in Science, we went to a nearby river to test the diversity and abundance of macroinvertebrates in both water affected by a polluted tributary and water not affected by it. We’re all learning to engage with the environment we live in through different topics and practices of learning.

In addition to classes, we’re also very busy with all of the activities around campus. Every morning, bright and early, we’ve been waking up for AMX. We run three times a week, and so far, have built up our stamina to run the three mile loop (It’s very tricky. We all get lost). This morning, we mixed it up with some Zumba and also did circuits a couple mornings ago in the cold. Of course we have to leave time to clean our messy cabins as well. We all scramble to tidy up at the end of each week to see who’s the best of them all. Cabin 5 has won for the third week in a row! We also all have our designated chores and are assigned to clean these areas every day. We can all tell everyone is getting very comfortable here at HMIbecause we now are seeing how sloppy everyone truly is after having to clean up after them. Hopefully now everyone has begun to realize the impact their actions have on others! Also we are on our second week of electives and we are practicing either our slacklining, yoga, or photography skills. We can slowly see all of our skills improving. All of our cook crews have been doing a great job in making some delicious meals for all of us, and we find ways to sneak in some occasional ice cream and banana bread. Finally, a strange thing to note about our end-of-day routine: after finishing all of our homework right before bedtime, it is typical for people to scream Christmas songs at the top of their lungs to top off each day.

This past weekend we began rotations of going into town, wood chopping, and having some time to relax. In town we wandered between Melanzana, the thrift store, the coffee shop, ice cream shop, and the gas station. Lots of wood and kindling was chopped to keep our cabins warm. Saturday night everyone hiked to Turquoise Lake, which was a little over a mile from HMI, to have a BBQ, watch the sunset, play instruments, and toss the Frisbee. Noah and Emma grilled about 75 hotdogs over a roaring fire, and people gathered good sturdy sticks to roast marshmellows for s’mores. To wrap up our beautiful starry night, we made a huge circle and sang songs together. Then we hiked back to HMI with only the light of 48 headlamps. On Sunday, anyone who had not gone climbing last weekend loaded up into the HMIbuses and went to the woods to climb. A perfect day for climbing, sunny and warm with some wind to keep us cool and a bunch of excited students. Everyone was successful and made it to the top. After climbing we had a picnic on the mountain then had a short walk back down to the buses. We had some time to relax when we returned to campus, followed by dinner and study hall to begin our next week.

One entertaining thing that has been happening has to do with a little friendly competition. The two boys cabins have been preparing extensively for THE volleyball game. These volleyball games started as simple fun; students would play volleyball before study hall and someone had the wonderful idea to have a legitimate game between the two cabins. Everyone agreed, and the competition began. Cabin 2 came prepared to the game with matching uniforms and many hours spent practicing plays and positions. Cabin 1, on the other hand, took a more relaxed approach. The game started on Sunday afternoon and it was a close match but in the end Cabin 2 came out as the victor with a final score of 3 to 1. While all in good fun, the volleyball rivalry between Cabins 1 and 2 has begun and we can be sure this is not the last time they will see each other on the court.

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