The Blue Hour by Maria Krouse

Her hair was always in a chic silver bob. I never saw her without her signature red lip. My beloved neighbor’s home lay nestled beneath the shadow of an elderly giant maple, and like her lips, her door is a vibrant carnation. Her house was neat yet lived in. Her walls are an eerie sage and the floors a creaky hickory. Beside her fireplace rested her favorite of all her pieces. The painting was of a fox burrowed in a hollow as night slowly approached. I was in the home of an artist. Her painting of the dusk scene was one of many. This was her favorite time of night, which she called gloaming. It’s the hour that entrances me – always so still and hypnotizing – when everything looks a different shade of blue tinting the world. Gloaming reminds me of sadness. Yet, it shows how sadness can be beautiful. Night isn’t something to fear but to embrace.

The soft purr of roaring traffic, buzzing amber street lamps, a cricket’s lullaby, and a hauntingly eerie silence between each breath. Night is what gives me hope. I am raptured by its deceiving beauty. Despite how scary and dark it may be, its intimidating manner lures me into its comforting shadow. It is the one excuse not to be doing something. During the day, there are all these expectations to work, to learn, to eat, to converse, to try. Night doesn’t have any expectations of me. It gives me a restart button at the end of the torturous hours of daylight. I love the colors of night. How the bright pastels and piercing brights transform into faint gloomy purples under the smoky haze of sapphire. The neon glare in store fronts and soft auras surrounding tall buildings. Or the sounds, like the hum of a glowing sign or the chorus of starlings at the break of dawn. Or the taste. The taste of a ripe plum or a metallic clove. Or the smell. A peppery aroma of sage and sweat. Or the touch. The warmth of a crackling flame or the cold of whispering wind on wet clothes clinging to blistered skin. Night is something I can always depend on at the end of the day, quite literally.

I can always count on it to soothe my problems. It can remedy the aches and sores of the sun, like a dip in a bubbling creek or a salty cove. I love to close my eyes and transport myself to the rugged coast of northern California. I imagine the inky water exploding into the rocky shoreline. Nothing compares to night at sea. That’s when I truly feel alone and small. Being the only mortal on the mile stretch of sand besides the night spirits or souls from shipwrecks long ago, wandering for eternity to find their lost love. This mythical place I speak of is nestled in the midpoint between gritty San Francisco and remote Eureka. Sea Ranch is a small community of earthy elderly, hermits, and anyone who smiles at the idea of not having to see another human being for days. I don’t have much of a connection to Sea Ranch in particular, but mostly to anything that runs from Santa Cruz to Fort Bragg. Since I was little, I can remember driving along highway one. I can remember looking out the window at the deadly drop into ice cold waters and bewitching fog, all beneath the starry sky that melted into the endless horizon, of course. 

I think night frustrates us. Through the blurry figures, intelligible silhouettes, ghosts, and sounds we can’t identify. But that’s where the beauty lies. Night doesn’t care. It’s the universe trying to tell humans to shut up, slow down, and pause. And I find that to be refreshing, like the crisp frigid air under a harvest moon or the chirring wind in the willow branches at dusk. Whether it be to sleep, to drive, to love, or to explore, I think night gives humans a chance or a mere excuse to find themselves. 

Lost in Berlin By Nora Konrad

Berlin- Bahnhof Westkreuz- Richtung Nord- S-Bahn Berlin DBAG-Baureihe 481 10.8.2009.jpg


Trains zoomed past me. I tugged at the end of my backpack as I peered up towards a map of Berlin, where I was spending the summer with my aunt and uncle in Germany. I followed the green line to my stop, Buckower Chaussee. The S2 train rumbled forward. I quickly ran through the door and grabbed a seat by the window. With earbuds in and Clairo playing, I watched as the city transformed into trees. Suddenly, the train stopped. It was the end of the route. Passengers drained out. This wasn’t Buckoweer Chaussee! The train never reached my stop!


I looked down at my phone. It was useless. I didn’t have a sim card– I couldn’t use Google Maps or call my family, but, conveniently, could play music. In an instant, my brain completely panicked. The earbuds were shoved into my pocket. Suddenly my feet started moving. I was running down the stairs, out to the street, and to the bus stop. Rapidly my eyes scanned down the schedule, looking for the X11 bus. Please, please, please, I prayed, fervently hoping for a solution. My heart dropped– it wasn’t there. I spun around, ran back across the street, up the stairs, and onto the platform. I started pacing. What was I gonna do? In desperation, I bought a Twix bar and began chomping my way through the fear.


Hopelessly I looked up at a sign of incoming trains, and saw the S2 coming! WHAT?! It was a miracle. Apparently, I had gotten onto the wrong line because this train kept going. It kept going all the way to Buckower Chausee.

I walked out of the train station and marched myself over to the bus stop. Ten minutes later, the bus arrived. I took out my bus card, then slumped in my seat. The worst was over.
Or so I thought.
Twenty minutes later, the bus driver announced something in German that I didn’t fully understand. I saw police lights out the window. There was an accident. All the passengers filed out of the bus. Oh no.

Lost. Again.

Slowly and dreadfully, I followed the passengers out of the bus. There was an intersection. I had no idea where I was. I looked for a cafe or someplace that might have Wi-fi. I was surrounded by trees, gardens, and a couple of houses.

I watched the line of people make their way down the street. I looked left, then right. Miserably, I put one foot in front of the other, whimpering down the road. Through heavy steps, my head lifted, and, amazingly, I recognized a brick building and I knew where I was.

Earlier that morning, when my aunt dropped me off at the bus station before I went into the city for my classes, she pointed across the street to that very same building. While she instructed me on my route home, I took in the building with no idea that it would become my guidepost.
My pace quickened.


Tigger Onesie By Carrington Hughes

As we ease into the Thanksgiving era, I feel it is essential to properly part ways with the Halloween season. To do this, I have dedicated this blog to the Tigger onesie costume I spent nearly $40 dollars on and will probably never wear again.

Dear Tigger onesie,

Where do I even start? Since the first time I laid eyes on you I knew we were meant to be. After my beloved friend suggested we do a part

ner costume, I knew immediately that your were the right choice. Sure, you and Winnie were a good match, but we were even better. You made me feel so youthful during my 10 minutes of trick or treating. You gathered such a large fan-base and being followed by a group of 3 year old’s was truly the highlight of my night. I know how much it hurt when that one demonic child called you Mickey Mouse but I promise you they didn’t mean it. I need you understand how much I enjoyed the 5 hours we spent together. As an HL economics students, I can confidently say that you were the best $40 I’ve ever spent. Will you be spending the next year in a storage closet? Yes. But that doesn’t mean I love you any less.


Carrington <3