Stanford is Heaven

I’m in Stanford (“in” because Stanford is actually a city within Palo Alto, as well as a University). I am here again for the summer, as a Visiting Scholar at the Center for Internet & Society.

Last year, I also came for the summer. The first day, I realized, the weather was perfect. It was cool enough in the morning to run. While cool, it was beautiful enough to run past palm trees in courtyards and up the hillside trails of the The Dish’s golden grasses. It warmed up around noon, for reading by gushing fountains with dashing children playing in the water. Then it cooled down progressively, for a nice walk in the evening, and turned to jean-weather for the evening. No humidity.

That was day one. In DC or Michigan or anywhere else, on a day like that, people would take the day off. They’d scamper outside. They’d tell their friends, “It’s so so beautiful today.” Weeks later, they would still recall it–“Do you remember that one Tuesday, how beautiful it was that day!”

The next day at Stanford, it was just as beautiful.

And the day after.

And the day after.

And nobody noticed.

That’s when I realized that I had never lived anywhere where it was nice every day–or even most days. In Michigan, where I grew up, it was too cold to go outside for 6-8 months of the year. The rest of the year, especially the summer, it was too humid to enjoy the outdoors. So I didn’t even understand why people liked the outdoors–air conditioning in the summer and heating in the winter were the only things that made life survivable. I was an indoors person. For good reason. And, since then, most other places I’ve lived were a far cry from perfect. Often humid, often cold.

Stanford is perfect. Every day. And, being here for four days already, each perfect, I see nothing has changed.

One thought on “Stanford is Heaven

  1. It’s all true. I was born in Michigan, work in DC, and last weekend I made my first visit to Stanford. The place is beautiful, the weather divine. Really unfair, if you ask me.

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