America has its treasures. One of them is a series of campus buildings of picture perfect quality. Actually, for a long while, the only images I had in my head of Universities were those of high rise walls and columns with a facade reminiscent of a prison or a palace. The closest to that I’ve seen so far would be Howard University with its beautiful structures, courtyards and decorated trees. And then, there was Principia College in Alton, overlooking the Mississippi river. The rest were Hollywood supplied: Mona Lisa Smile, Finding Forrester, The Scent of a Woman, and The Dead Poets Society, and a few other movies showing Ivy League campus environments.

And then I encountered the Washington University in St. Louis*, by chance I must say, during an idle moment of driving through the town. After an hour of walking through its walls and taking in the sights, I began to wonder how people who go there manage to concentrate on classwork in the sight of such beauty and serenity. I would never know, but I would keep wondering whether too much beauty is sometimes an unpardonable evil.

(*Initially mistakenly referred to as St. Louis University, the pictured structure is actually from Washington University in St. Louis. Thanks to Gerry Everding for the correction).

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