Texas Tech has always been a part of my life. Since I was a little boy, I remember looking up to Tech and her students wishing I could be a part of that world one day.
When it was time to start applying to colleges, I only had one on my mind and was the only one that I applied for. Being from Lubbock and getting to attend the college I loved since I was a child has its perks, but also it has its downside.
Lubbock is just boring. There is nothing to do and not much has changed over the years. Finding things to do in Lubbock has been an uphill battle I have been facing since I was in middle school and high school.
We have movie theaters, shopping districts, and enough restaurants to last you for a long time but that’s just it. The only amusement park we have is Joyland, which I haven’t been to since I was in fifth grade and the South Plains Fair.
In high school, I remember talking with friends trying to think of what to do on a Saturday. I remember us wishing that we were 21 because there was more fun stuff that 21+, college students could do.
Now that I am 21, I can say that we were definitely wrong in wishing to be 21. There is still nothing fun to do.
However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to make some of the most incredible memories that I still think about now and then. Getting to go to the Drive-In theater on dates or with friends coffee shop hopping late at night during midterms and finals season with friends are just some of the memories I have.
It also means that I know the best place to get coffee from, Tova or Sugar Browns, and I know the best hole-in-the-wall Mexican restaurant. So it does have its perks from being here.
Lubbock is also a sleepy town, something that locals have dubbed living in a big town with a small-town feel. It’s a perfect place to live and raise a family but not to go to college.
The small-town feel is most definitely true because everyone knows everyone. No secret ever stays a secret and in a matter of days, my parents will call me to ask if I did something.
This brings me to a downside of being from Lubbock having my parents live so close to me, and I write this knowing that they will read this column. Don’t get me wrong, I love my parents, and I am so grateful for everything they do for me, but I need space.
For my freshman and sophomore years at Tech, I lived with them to save money, which was fantastic. I got a home-cooked meal daily. I got to be around my family who I am super close to, but when I say living on my own was freeing it was probably one of the best things I’ve done in life.
As I said, I love my parents but like all parents, they have rules that I had to abide by living under their roof which I respect. However, living on my own, I make my own rules, and I am in charge of myself and what I do.
Even now that I am living on my own, they still are finding out what I am doing. That’s just the hard part, I still have to watch what I am doing because I know they will find out and ask me about it.
College is supposed to be the best time of your life and it’s a time to learn who you are. I just feel I can’t truly find myself because I am still under their watchful eye.
But that downside also has its perks. My parents love to spoil me every time they see me even though I live 10 minutes from them.
They love taking me out to eat and coming over to my place to talk about our lives. Also, it’s nice to take a break from eating ramen noodles and getting to eat a home-cooked meal.
One perk I see from being from Lubbock is that I was prepared to go to Tech. I was immersed in Tech’s culture and it’s traditions since birth.
I went to golf, science and engineering camps at Tech during the summer and got to meet some professors that would be my actual professors for my classes today. Those professors showed me what other college professors’ expectations would be and the course load I would be expected to handle.
It’s also amazing to see how some Tech traditions have stayed the same since I was a little kid and seeing others evolve. I’ve also been able to see campus change and rise to be the academic powerhouse it is today.
It was also an easy transition from Lubbock High School, just right down 19th street, to campus.
So yes being from Lubbock has its perks and downsides, but I wouldn’t change one bit about my experience being from here, and I will never regret choosing to call Tech my home.