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I Must be Funny

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

I wasn’t even going to audition.

It was yet another bright and sunny Friday afternoon at Conn, and the annual club fair was in full force on Library Green. I was running the Ski Club booth given my new position as president for this academic year. Along with the other club members, I had been recruiting new members for about an hour before I took a break to say hi to my friends at other booths. My friend and fellow blogger, Dani Maney ‘20, was running a booth at the fair for her improv group N20. 

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Road Trip Reflection

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. This is the final post in a series of pieces about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

I spent the last day of the road trip alone in Samuel’s house in Virginia. Samuel left with his family in the morning to visit his grandma in Illinois and as soon as I woke up I drove Dani to the airport so she could fly back to Massachusetts.

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Were Not in Kansas Anymore: Reaching Virginia

- The Experience, Daniella Maney ’20

Mark and Samuel pose in front of a stick on wall graphic of a University of Virginia football player
Mark and Samuel pose in front of a wall sticker of a University of Virginia football player

Bloggers Daniella Maney, ‘20 and Mark McPhillips, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. This is the final post in a series of pieces about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

It was tough waking up with an achy back again but even tougher realizing that this was the final day of our road trip. All of our planning, saving, spending, and hanging out together was coming to an end. David had a shift at the vegan restaurant in the morning so we all thanked him and said goodbye. Then we got ready to leave mainly because it’s weird being in someone’s house when they're not there but also because we had to get a move on if we were going to experience our last taste of Nashville. It takes an estimated eight hours to drive from Nashville to Charlottesville, Virginia. After driving for twelve days you understand that Google Maps can’t account for all of the stops and traffic that you will hit so we knew it would take longer than that. We decided to go down to the tourist section of Nashville called Broadway Street before departing. 

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Day 12: To Samuel’s House

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

Today began just as the day before it did: Dani, Samuel, and I awoke on the floor of my friend David’s apartment. We were a little achy from our sleeping accommodations but, again, we were just grateful to have a free place to stay.

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Day: 11 Last Day Already?

- The Experience, Daniella Maney ’20

Bloggers Daniella Maney, ‘20 and Mark McPhillips, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

I woke up a little achy from our on-the-grounded sleeping setup. I hadn’t slept that much because I was uncomfortable so I needed to take a nap on David’s bed to recharge. I am a notoriously great sleeper. I take many short naps at Conn when I have downtime. But I ended up falling asleep for a majority of the day and woke up around dinner time.

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Day 11: Nashville

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

Waking up today was a bit more strenuous than in days past. What I didn’t mention in my previous post is where exactly Dani, Samuel and I slept in David’s apartment. He lives with a few roommates and it was a pretty packed visit so our area of slumber was David’s bedroom floor. Frankly, it was not too comfortable but I did not care much because he was generous enough to let us crash with him for free. It wasn’t glamorous but it was worth it because we saved a lot of money that we would have spent on a hotel room in Nashville.

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There's More to Conn

- The Experience, Avery Lowe '18

Avery Lowe ’18 explores the water's edge at Mamacoke Island.
Exploring the water's edge at Mamacoke Island.

With each year that I’ve been at Conn I’ve continued to discover natural landmarks that surround our campus and make our living here even more exceptional. It wasn’t clear to me before I came to college how having a beautiful campus along with wonderful natural resources close by would be an essential part of my experience. These natural aspects of the College are perhaps not advertised widely enough. Conn is located right next to two fantastic beaches, Ocean Beach Park and Waterford Beach, and is home to the Connecticut College Arboretum, which runs throughout campus. I could go on and on listing our vast access to nature, but what I really want to touch on today is a special little island called Mamacoke.   

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Day 10: Coffee, Vegan Food, and a Dog!

- The Experience, Daniella Maney ’20

Bloggers Daniella Maney, ‘20 and Mark McPhillips, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

Sleeping in places you're not accustomed to is always a little strange and sometimes scary because you're stepping out of your comfort zone. Being woken up by the sound of a loud fire alarm in one of those strange places is even more frightening. The hotel staff did a great job getting everyone to evacuate their rooms and told us that the source of the alarm was some severely burned toast made by a guest. I found this hysterical and laughed about it for a while but also, as my friends and my family know, I am not a morning person. If I’m going to wake up early I usually prefer a more gentle approach. The fire department arrived and found the burnt toast story funny, and we were let back into our room. We decided that since we were already up we might as well get ready to go to our next destination, which was one of our big ones, Nashville, Tennessee. Nashville was Samuel’s choice because of his love of music (ask him about Patti Smith). We were set up to stay with Mark’s friend David, who he met at summer camp. On the way to Nashville we experienced another downpour. This time Mark was driving and I was backseat driving trying to make sure he didn't hydroplane because that's one of my driving fears.

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Day 10: Travelin’ in Tennessee

- The Experience, Mark McPhillips '20

Bloggers Mark McPhillips, ‘20 and Daniella Maney, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

It was the most abrupt beginning to a day on our road trip yet: the three of us were startled awake by the Fairfield Inn & Suites’ fire alarm. Dani, Samuel and I got dressed as quickly as possible and made our way outside. We overheard hotel staff discussing the cause of the commotion and discovered that a guest had merely burned their toast. It was a pretty comical incident but rather frustrating for the three of us as well as the other hotel guests.

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Day 9: Memphis

- The Experience, Daniella Maney ’20

Samuel navigates on his phone while Mark drives the car through Memphis.
Mark at the wheel and Samuel at the navigation station.

Bloggers Daniella Maney, ‘20 and Mark McPhillips, ‘20 embarked on a road trip this summer with their friend Samuel Piller, ‘20 before coming back to Conn. We will publish a series of posts about what they experienced along the way.... (Read Post 1)

I drove from Mississippi to Memphis, Tennessee, in the morning. It was another quick drive, and arguably the prettiest. I had a hard time keeping my eyes on the road because we were driving through valleys with open fields and hundreds of bulls walking around, eating grass, and laying under canopies of trees. We arrived in Memphis at around 3 p.m., the earliest we have ever arrived at a hotel. I was wiped out from a bout of insomnia the night before so I decided to take a quick nap... that happened to be two-hours-long. I woke up hungry, like always, so I looked up barbecue places in Memphis. A restaurant called Central BBQ in downtown caught my eye. It was 20 minutes from our hotel and we decided it was worth the drive because we needed to get authentic barbeque while in the south. The restaurant was great. They made their own ghost pepper hot sauce. We decided to get a slab of ribs which comes with four sides. We got green beans, homemade pork rinds, mac ‘n cheese, and onion rings. Mark said, "That was the quickest meal of my whole life," because we wolfed down the meal in probably seven minutes.

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