Hello Tim, Nice to Meet You. I’m Felix
At the airport, Tim (the graduate assistant whose job it is to coordinate the whole visiting writer series) meets me and we walk to his car. The Birmingham airport is about an hour outside of Tuscaloosa, so we pass the time chatting about our MFA experiences and Flash and Alabama in general. Tim is incredibly nice, opinionated but not overbearingly so, and polite almost to a fault. We’re also roughly the same age, give or take a few years. I guess it is a bit odd, the closeness in years.
When we get to the hotel, I realize that I won’t be able to "walk" to campus from my room. When I ask about bus schedules or public transport, he tells me to call him. I balk a bit, and he keeps telling me that it’s "his job" to drive me around. Even though my old school did this sort of thing for visiting writers, it still feels weird to me to have someone else doing things for me. Maybe it’s how I was raised – I just don’t like it. Since I’m stuck, Tim and I talk about his schedule and I try to plan my day in a way that I hope is convenient for him. He comes inside the hotel with me to make sure that the reservations are in order. We shake hands, and he tells me to call him tomorrow when I’m ready to go onto campus.