Finding Enchantment on a Saturday in Berkeley

Another day marks yet another week within another semester in not just another, but my final, year at Berkeley.

At this point, I should be some sort of veteran soul when it comes to the start of semesters, but this past week and a half of school has been — as it always has been — one massive whirlwind of events. Whether it’s classes or errands, meetings or readings, there always seems to something that needs to be penned into some desperate corner of my agenda.

But despite my brimming, packed lunch-to-go schedule, I’ve actually found myself enjoying it more (at least…I think I am) than I’ve enjoyed the starts of previous semesters.

Why? As silly as this might sound, I’m kind of enchanted by everything I’m doing, even if it’s as mundane as going to class.

Walking, talking advert for children's books.
Walking, talking advert for children’s books on her way to an English class named after yet another children’s book: Where the Wild Things Are.

In plain English, I’m finding joy in everything I do.

I know I gripe about a lot of things, from the amount of reading I have left to do, to the hours I spend sitting in class or tabling on Sproul or running all over campus, but for whatever inexplicable reason, I actively like doing these routine tasks.

Thursday evening, however, was what truly elevated my week from acceptably humdrum to fairly exceptional.

My English class ventured out to the Shotgun Player’s Theater down on Ashby to enjoy their delightful, albeit truly bizarre adaptation of the traditional Greek myth, Orpheus and Eurydice. But as perplexed as I was by some of their costume pieces, I was hardly ever pulled out of the allure of the story or the production.

A hidden gem that I never would have found otherwise.
A hidden gem found on, perhaps, the final school field trip I will ever take.

Each of the characters were wonderfully played, and the production choices — I cannot emphasize just how unexpected some of them were — somehow all contributed to the full experience of the play. Just as I often allow and wish for myself to be pulled into the worlds of films, TV shows, and books, I found myself falling into the realm of this play. It was 90 minutes of timeless bliss, where I didn’t want to, and probably couldn’t, think of anything else but Orpheus and Eurydice. It’s fair to say that I left the theater feeling completely exhilarated and enthused for the weeks and months to come.

Perhaps this perception of enchantment only came about as a result of a discussion we’d had in class earlier this week, but does that ultimately matter?

Even if this wave of enchantment is something that was artificially produced, you won’t be hearing any complaints about it from me. On the contrary, I wouldn’t mind being enchanted more often. It’s quite lovely to find enjoyment in the small tasks that I will undoubtedly find tiring in another month-and-a-half’s time, and on the plus side, I feel rather like Giselle. (The more you think about it, the more you’ll realize just how aptly Disney named that movie.)

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