mcgillcrestIt’s come to that time. When I’m racing against the clock. Trying to finish my work. So this week I have begun to spend late nights at the McGill library. Interestingly, the McGill library is open 24/7 (ie. round the clock, even on Sundays!). So I decided to spend a full night getting some much needed momentum to finish my chapter. This is the story of my first all-nighter attempt.

The whole day I spent working in what has become my favourite corner to study. It’s in the Mezannine floor, near the reference library. there are big tables to study, and that part of the library is a little cooler than other areas. With plenty of book space, and also room to move around (I love to walk and read), it’s ideal for my needs. The only problem is that when I need to take a break… or even go for lunch, it’s a risk to leave my computer and books behind because it is a pretty public area and things could get flicked. So I find myself having to leave some of my stuff on the computer, hoping that I won’t be displaced. Anyway… it still is a good place to study.

So, I began work at about 1:30am (after lunch) and pretty much parked myself in the study area. By evening time, i went for dinner in the McGill cafeteria, which is incidentally ALSO open 24/7… it’s a little expensive, and the food options are not that great for the price, but still, it’s a time saver! (better than leaving the campus to find a place to eat downtown).  So I had a pizza and coke. And head back to the library.

I made quite good progress, but I was trying to pace myself… and not exert myself too much, considering I was planning to spend all night. I had already started feeling tired… my back was really hurting… so with the library emptying out a little more… I spent some time reading on the floor, lying on my back. It’s interesting that you can do that here, without looking too odd! (or so I think!) :)

Next, at around 9:30pm, I heard a public announcement through speakers that I didn’t even know existed, McGill Cybertheque that the library services are closing. So no more checking out after 9:45pm. Interesting… that the services were being provided till so late.

But I didn’t need to check out anything (I cart a heavy load of books back and forth from my apartment).And so I continued working.

Then, at about 1:00am… there was a siren kind of sound, and with people packing up, I assumed it was a sign for something. I asked one of the guards patrolling, what’s up? And he told me that we have to shift to the study area on the other side of the building of the Redpath library. (I was at the McLennan library side). It is a more secure location, with plenty of study place, and yet no access to the library books etc.  There’s a study area called the “Fish bowl”, which has small tables, like carols, for each student, but somehow I haven’t enjoyed studying there. it’s feels cramped. There is a computer lab, which is accessible to students. And below, where the cafeteria is, is the “Cybertheque.”

The Cybertheque is where I chose to study. It’s modern looking study area, with computers, large tables, glass (sound-proof?) cubicles for those who want to do group-study, and also place for low and sofa seating for those who like to sit on the floor or close to it. It was a little warm (too warm), but I liked the space I found. After a snack in the cafeteria, a doughnut with coffee (I don’t usually drink coffee), I got straight back to work.

At around 2:00am, I had finished an important part of a section I was writing, but there was another part to go, to finish my goals for the night.

At 2:30am… as I was reading (the photo is of the article that I was reading), a guard came with a sign-up sheet, asking me to write my name and McGill id. Since I’m a Presbyterian College student (thus, by association a McGill student), I don’t have a McGill id. The guard nicely told me that only students with McGill ids can work late. I didn’t protest too much, and packed up my stuff and left.

However, I had the chance to quickly check which buses are available through googlemaps, what an amazingly helpful website! And found two buses that could get me home in about 50 minutes. I did have to walk a bit, but the fact that I got the buses to get me home was great.

I reached home, glad for the work I accomplished, but also feeling a little incomplete… since I wasn’t able to finish my night goals. Reading

But now, knowing that the library is basically closed for me at 1:00am, I will be a little more realistic on what I can/should attempt to complete each day.

Sadly, I still have a long way to go before I finish everything. Time, time, whereforth art thou, my time!