By Matthew Pinkney, Mosaic Staff
My first instinct upon walking into Mosaic was strangely neutral. I was excited, yes, to meet the other reporters and to get moved into the dorm, but it was a strangely muted kind of excitement. It was excitement mixed with acceptance. No more “Oh God, what did I get myself into?” Now, there was only just “Here we go.”
Moving in, I was a little distant, not quite the fast friend I usually am. Maybe it was just having my parents there doing all the talking for me. And then some. I think they were just nervous about giving their little boy up for two weeks. Like me, except they masked their fear with talking as opposed to my silence. We took a walk around campus, enjoying the last time we’d be together for a while.
Dinner was about what I expected, a basic buffet with all the reporters and their families. After getting our food, all the writers sat in a corner and ate, chatted and got to know each other better. I think it’s fairly safe to say we became good friends even in this short time.
After dinner was a long, long meeting. We met Joe and Marcos and Leslie, our fearless leaders for the next two weeks. The parents had their fears assuaged (or re-ignited?) about our safety and we had our fears re-ignited (or assuaged?) about our workload.
Finally, it came time to say goodbye to our parents. There weren’t any tears or anything dramatic like that. We just hugged and promised to call and then Mom and Dad left and I joined a group of writers talking.
Then we went up to the lounge. If that sounds cool, I’m sorry to disappoint you. It’s a tiny room with a few chairs, a pool table (with no balls or cues), a foosball table (with no balls), a TV (that doesn’t work), and a few vending machines (which might work).
Eventually we all decided to go to bed. Which resulted in me tossing and turning for the better part of the night. I set my alarm for 8:00, which would have given me plenty of time to get ready. By 6, I just gave up on the idea of sleep and read for a few hours.
We got to the newsroom bright and early. We started writing biographies for our roommates and talked about some story ideas before we broke for lunch.
Lunch was the most exciting part of the day, to be honest. As we walked off campus and into the city to find a place to eat, we all finally felt like college students for the first time. Lunch was more expensive than I thought, but it was really fun to hang out with some new friends.
After lunch, we came back to the newsroom and hammered out some story ideas. Pitching is always the hardest and most nerve-wracking part of journalism. But, the hard part is probably yet to come. Oh boy…