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Lyman the Cat, Lucy’s Birthday, and Indigenous Peoples’ Day

Zia talks about her love for Lyman, her roommate's first birthday away from home, and the upcoming Indigenous Peoples' Day.

Zia talks about her love for Lyman, her roommate's first birthday away from home, and the upcoming Indigenous Peoples' Day.

From the bottom of my heart, I truly love Lyman. He probably doesn’t love me as much as I love him, but I am completely okay with this being a one-sided deal.

Lyman is Carleton’s neighborhood cat. He tends to wander around, follow people into buildings, and improve the mood of those who encounter him. I’ve had many encounters with Lyman this week (it’s been a pretty good week). I usually see him walking around outside of Watson, but this week I found him inside of our basement. I was on a phone call with my mom and her introduction to Lyman was me shouting, “Lyman is in our basement!”. She was very confused. And I was very confused on how he managed to get down there. (I have a suspicion someone helped him get there.) He seemed pretty content with walking around the basement. It’s the simple pleasures that matter the most.

I saw him again when some friends and I were walking back to the dorm one night. Lyman tends to give off the vibe that he really doesn’t care whether you pet him or not, but he gives away his true feelings once you leave and he runs after you. It’s kind of a “Please don’t leave me!” vibe.

Lyman tends to attract quite the crowd. I most recently saw him sitting on a rock outside of Cassat. As me and my friend Sidra stopped to pet him, three other people stopped as well. He’s quite a popular cat. It’s probably because we all miss our pets from home. Or maybe it’s because Lyman is just an amazing cat. Whatever the true reason is, he really made my week.

Another thing that made my week was my roommate Lucy’s birthday. She turned 19 on October 11th. Super exciting. Me and Sidra went to buy her a cupcake from Cake Walk and spent the day shouting “It’s your birthday!” at her. I also got her a card and wrote her some heartfelt words. Her birthday made my week because she genuinely seemed to have a good day, which is so amazing, especially since it was her first birthday away from home. She handled it like a pro. I hope our friend group was a good enough support system for her on the special day. Our goal was her happiness, and I’d say we succeeded.

To end my Week 4 blog post, I want to talk about an upcoming event: Indigenous Peoples’ Day. This day is so special to me and it’s my first time spending it in an environment where I am not surrounded by my fellow Indigenous peoples. I suppose that’s contributing to my growth as a functioning human in society, but it still feels kind of weird to me. I’ve been told by multiple family members that it’s always going to feel weird when you’re the only Native in the room, but the payoff is that you become stronger and wiser about navigating those situations. They’re right, I know they are.

I think the only thing I can do to help myself is to be strong and remind myself that while people at Carleton might not know the “Indigenous experience”, they’re willing to learn and be as much help as they can be. That’s really all I can ask for. So on October 14th, I will be wearing my moccasins and representing my people with pride.

Zia is a first-year student from Santa Fe, New Mexico. Though, despite growing up among the 19 Pueblos, her tribe is the Canim Lake Band from British Columbia, Canada. She is interested in studying Biology and, hopefully, giving back to her people while bridging the gap between the medical field and Native communities. Aside from academics, she loves watching re-runs of The Office and Parks and Rec and keeping up with the latest music from Aminé, Brockhampton, Rex Orange County, Omar Apollo, GoldLink, and many more. Meet the other bloggers!

Photo highlights from the week:

Chocolate cupcake held in box.

Lucy's Birthday Cupcake.

Cat sniffs hand.

Lyman sniffs Sidra's hand.

Girl holds cat. Cat is unamused.

I found Lyman in Watson's basement.

Hand points to cat.

Lyman in Watson's basement.

Hand reaches out to cat.

Lyman, once again.

Three pairs of feet with socks and sandals.

Sidra, Lucy, and I had socks and sandals.

Beaded moccasins.

My moccasins!

Girl poses happily on sunny day.

Happy Birthday Lucy!