The Rotunda steps

This photo isn’t much, but the moment preceding it touched my heart. That particular morning I was early to work (very unusual) so I walked up to the Lawn with my camera. Usually at 7 30 it is fairly deserted, so I was mildly distressed to find a great deal of activity. As I found out, there was a breakfast event on the Lawn side of the Rotunda to welcome the newly admitted students for the fall semester. That seemed like a nice idea, and a very exciting time for those seniors. I wandered around the base of the Rotunda to the other side and as I came to the steps I saw a woman (presumably Mom) striding purposefully up the stairs. Trailing her by a bit was a young woman who I assumed was an upcoming “first year “(as we say at only UVA). This scene unleashed a surge of nostalgia – not so much re my first year self, but about bringing Tess to school. As I got close, the girl turned to me and asked politely “Are these the steps of the Rotunda?” I said that they were, and asked her if she had been admitted and was looking for the breakfast. She was, so I pointed her around the other side and congratulated her. It was so poignant – her innocence, the novelty of it all and her desire to be sure she was at the right place. In a short time the Lawn, the Rotunda, the Grounds would all be such an integral part of her as she steps into an entirely new phase of her life. I was reminded, as I am so often, how quickly the time passes.




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