Welcome to Rhodes 2018 and to all our resident G18’s, Activate congratulates you on starting your race here. The bright spark of optimism and youth which you bring to campus, brings a refreshing shot of hope to those of us who are returning for yet another lap in our race. But while the freshers bring renewed hope to our Rhodes family, it’s the returning sluggers whose all-knowing gazes we look to for nostalgic comfort. So this O-week, let’s take a look at the historical happenings, locations and cultural calamities which make up the Rhodes which G17’s, 16’s, 15’s and beyond will remember.
The first thing we must pay tribute to is the loss of several key structures which dominate the framework of Rhodent life. The death of Champs Bar is one which cannot go without its memorialisation, as many a Wednesday karaoke nights have slipped in and out of many a Rhodents’ memory.
But fear not, insatiable bar rats, we still have the trusty Rat, the crusty Friars and the musky Slipstream. But if you’re looking for Monastery, you’ll find it’s caught onto the name changing revolution and is now currently known as 37 on New.
Mon is the not the only famous Rhodes landmark touched by change. Double check those campus maps kids, because Jan Smuts is no more. Where the infamous tower of masculinity once stood, the Robert Subukwe House now resides. The general debauchery doesn’t change with the name though, so ladies, beware.
While the Kaif remains the steadfast location for student procrastination on campus, its new bright green facelift has brought a splash of colour to the central grazing grounds. And if the new colour bothers you, avert your eyes to the adjacent building to enjoy that industrialized eyesore gate barring entrance to the library instead.
While the G18’s are bound to revel in the remaining traditional overall festivities, such as Intervarsity (RIP TriVar) or Boaties, they will never look back on the annual opening ceremony of Great Field Party, an unwritten rite of passage which each generation of Rhodes first years and their livers have to endure.
While some traditions and memories fade, they make way new ones. For those G’s with the digits, 17 and below we stand with shining pride of the years of experience and arbitrary Rhodes wisdoms you have gained.