October 7, 2004

The A Spot

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Many students will be headed home this weekend to enjoy a much needed break from prelims, aversions to clock tower renditions of pop hits, and messy love triangles that have accumulated during the first few weeks of school. If you”re anything like me, you”ll be running, not walking. Fall Break also brings the end of this column, and the presentation of a newly redesigned Sun to be presented to the student body. Incidentally, one of the best things about Ithaca is, of course, how easy it is to skip town. In honor of the end of The A Spot, and this writer”s weekend departure from the Ithaca area, a look at leaving Ithaca behind.

Almost as important as where students will be going this weekend is how they get there. The bus is perhaps the most preferred and popular way to flee Cornell, after owning a vehicle or scoring a ride from a friend. Student Agencies in Collegetown is the headquarters for the Shortline Bus, which provides students with answers to all their Fall Break traveling needs. There is something so ‘college’ about taking a Coach Bus. Unfortunately, a lot of that love seems to wear off somewhere around the fourth hour. No matter how hard you try to make it clear that the seat next to you is taken, there is always a woman with a mullet who wants to tell you her life story and cry on your shoulder for six hours. And don”t try to put your headphones on or doze off, she”ll just talk louder. Aside from this factor, the bus is extremely convenient and runs daily from 4 a.m. to 6 p.m., leaving from Collegetown or North Campus. For Fall Break, Student Agencies is offering special service to Boston, and even more exciting, a ‘TGIF’ fare for all students traveling to New York, Long Island, and Westchester. You remember TGIF, don”t you? Just like the original ABC television lineup, this one comes with the Olsen Twins too, now that Mary Kate and Ashley are located in the Big Apple.

If you are not enticed by the idea of the regular coach bus, there are now more plush options. Over the summer Cornell launched a new express bus designed to connect Ithaca and New York City, as was reported in The Sun. The new coach-style bus comes complete with reclining seats, providing its riders with the lap of luxury. Unfortunately, at $99 one way and $149 round trip, the new bus isn”t exactly economical, and it does not yet run on weekends, since it is meant mostly for faculty, alumni, and administration traveling between Cornell campuses.

Flying is another option open to students who live farther, or just don”t want to spend all the hours on the road. Ithaca”s Tompkin”s County Airport is just up Route 13, and Syracuse Airport is only 45 minutes away. There have been complaints made about US Airway”s small propeller planes and high prices, but on the bright side, it is only minutes from campus. Syracuse Hancock International Airport, though farther, is larger and thus more ideal for those traveling long distances.

Of course, not everyone will be leaving the Finger Lakes Region. Students stuck in Ithaca over the Fall Break weekend will get to enjoy the comfortably chilly weather without the crowds invading Ho Plaza. Someone has to find out whether the clock tower still plays if there”s no one around to hear it. The Fall Break weekend is the perfect opportunity to do all the things you”ve always wanted to do in Ithaca but have never had the time to. Visitithaca.com has an itinerary and planner for visitors to the Ithaca Area that students staying for the weekend can follow if all else fails. It”s always fun to pretend to be a tourist. No matter how we get home, come Wednesday we will all inevitably travel back to school, leave our parents and out-of school friends behind, and get back to the grind. Maybe the best thing about a break from Ithaca isn”t that it”s so easy to leave, but that it”s so easy to come back to, because after this break you, like this paper, can come back completely redesigned.

Archived article by Logan Bromer