by Kyla

In the midst of the last few weeks of my last semester as an undergraduate, I don’t even know how I feel. I love VIU. I don’t want to leave it. When I tell this to people, they remind me that it is a bubble, like an incubator if you will. But I love my incubator. I love the stairs. I love how kind Toni O’Keefe and Ralph Nilsson have been about the various ranting letters I have sent them over my tenure here. I love my professors and often make little Justin Beiber hearts with my hands whenever I see them.

I just got back – like two minutes ago – from a tour of the new sturgeon center and I realized – three and a half years after beginning a degree in history – that I love sturgeon. I love their beautiful black bodies, I love the three lines of scutes across their backs. I love my history and First Nations studies, but I’m thinking, suddenly, I should have been a marine biologist. I want to be sturgeon geek, I’m not going to lie, and I wonder how I didn’t get this memo until this morning, thirty-eight years old, about to graduate.

I love the grow-op situation they’ve got going on up there in the fish place, although I am pretty confident grow-op was not the term used by the technician who led us around. They were growing basil, and as I stood there in the hothouse, inhaling the vibrant scent of basil, I thought, you know, I would really like to make me some pesto right now, and now I’m wondering who exactly I need to beg or bribe in order to get my hands on some of that fish-grown basil from VIU. I’m just sayin’, if you’ve never taken a walk around the sturgeon center, you should give them a call and find out how you can. Cool stuff. (In full disclosure, I sheepishly confess that when VIU implemented its ‘no credit card policy’ I wrote them a shitogram complaining that they couldn’t afford to take credit card payments any more but they could afford to build a new sturgeon building… um, if it helps, I am now hanging my head in shame, and I’d like to take this moment to thank VIU for not booting my butt out of this school for being such a pain in the ass. Thanks, VIU. You guys are champs!)

So I love sturgeon, and basil, and VIU, and my professors, and the long-suffering adminstration. That’s a lot of love to walk away from, I’m not going to lie, and so I look to graduation with a sense of, well, sorrow. And I’m scared, too, because VIU is a bubble, it is a wonderful incubator, and this particular student is horrified, frankly, at the uncertainty of whatever comes next. I love that I got to do this. I know what comes next will be wonderful, but I am not sure that what comes next will inspire me to form Justin Bieber hearts several times a day.

I hope it does. I also hope it involves sturgeon.