Last week I spiced up my lunch break and trekked from my cubicle in University Hall across campus to the legendary Campanile ivory bell tower. I had heard from multiple colleagues that staff were allowed to go up to the top of the tower (for FREE!) and that it was something I had to check out. I did know going into this experience that the tower is a treasured landmark that symbolizes Berkeley’s vision and constant contribution to the world. It is also very hard to miss as you walk through campus. So the other day I decided to see for myself what this tower is all about (Located HERE).
Up I went to the top of the 307 foot tower in an elevator accompanied by an audio tour. I was excited as I walked up the remaining steps to the viewing platform. And can say with confidence that this view from the Campanile lived up to the hype. I lucked out with a clear day and I could easily see for miles. I saw the entire campus from an aerial view, with all of the intricate architecture and design. I saw the surrounding neighborhoods of Berkeley. I saw the San Francisco skyline across the bay, and the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz. As a directionally challenged individual, this was a pretty stellar way to put things into perspective and get acclimated with my surroundings!
After soaking up the view, I returned back to my office and (being the nerd that I am) started researching a bit about the tower. Now I want to encourage you to go experience the tower for yourself, but just to tickle your fancy… I read this heartwarming story of Margaret Murdock, UC alumnus Class of 1918 and campus education credentials counselor, who played the Campanile bells for 60 years. That is almost unfathomable to me. She was working here for about two and a half times the amount of years I’ve been alive! Ms. Murdock’s dedication to Berkeley was honored in 1978 when she received the first Berkeley Citation given to a woman for her extraordinary services to the campus. I thought that was so cool.
I love that we have this beautiful view at our disposal. I have always been a sucker for views - I often will go (way) out of my way to check out a good view. This little lunch field trip was such a refreshing break from the cube life - and it was so easy to get to! I think it is important for me to do these little things from time to time, to get a breath of fresh air and recharge during the work day. I am absolutely going to go back on another clear day-maybe drag some of my coworkers with me- you should check it out too! Check out the details HERE