I felt like the first turtle was about a young boys suffering when he leaves all that he knows and moves to a new town. When the boy finally decides to go out and try to acclimate to his neighboring environment he finds comfort in the beauty of nature, specifically turtles. This story relates to new freshmen because it shows that it is not easy to leave all that you know behind, but once you find a niche it will be easier to join the cortland community. The sentence “To go off to the swamps and woods was to abandon-in some social measure to reject- home, family, and community” portrays the way that alot of cortland freshmen’s families feel when they leave home. Although our parents know that we are not really abandoning them, it is extremely hard for them, as it is for us, to leave us and allow us to thrive as adults. This sentence shows that change affects everyone in a community, or family, in different but possibly equally traumatizing ways. Another notable sentence is “despite the dramatic intrusion, he would not let go of her”, I think that this means that although we feel displaced it does not mean that our friends and family will forget about, nor stop loving us, once we leave to go to college. Like the turtle protects his mate, our friends and family will protect and guide us through our college experience, they are not leaving us on our own. Also, do not let go of your friends when you go to college, hold onto friendships and build on them. Although this story was a bit hard to decipher, I feel that it conveys a message that getting involved in the Cortland community will stop the hurt.
-cassandra McNamara

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