An Ending and a New Beginning

Saturday, May 23, 2015

[the one where I explore all of the rapid changes of the last month or so]

| Finals |

"The Donner Party died for our right to ski."

There's nothing to make you reflect on the events of the past year like the ample time you spend procrastinating during finals. It's crazy to think about everything that's happened since last fall when a bright-eyed, bushy-tailed freshman set foot on campus three-thousand miles from home. At that point, without knowing it, I was still so attached to home and the institutions and friends I associated with that. Little by little, I began to make campus my new home; every time I thought I'd found the last hidden beautiful place, I found myself in yet another. (To be clear, I'm still not done exploring, which means it's a good thing I have three years left here.)

To be clear, I did actually do some work and studying during finals. But that's really secondary to the fact that I went to TNTG at 2107 for the last time, and tried to have as much fun as humanely possible (puppies included). Notable fun included reading, laughing at, and sharing an article my friend wrote about Jessie (see Days 13-21 for clarification on identification). It was basically a compilation of all the ridiculous things she's said over the course of the semester, which can be accessed and thoroughly enjoyed here
stacksonstacksonstacks (of books)
As much as I absolutely loved freshman year and had the hardest time saying goodbye to some of my closest friends, I was more than ready for a mental break.
*cue Beach Week 2k15*

| Beach Week |


The saying "work hard, play hard" could not better capture the essence of your average Richmond student. We work our bums off during the school year, only to celebrate with a full blown week at the beach. Honestly, exactly what the doctor ordered. After packing up my whole dorm room all by myself, I drove some of my favorite people about five hours down to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. That night was really relaxed and I got to hang out with Haley and Melissa and that whole squad of people. A few of us walked down to the beach and the second I felt the sand hit my toes, I took off. Straight for the ocean. Like something was pulling my with inextricable force. Shouting, "LITERALLY, YAY." And that was my first time in the Atlantic Ocean.

If you didn't add a caption about Sand Trap Queens, was it even Beach Week 2k15?

Have you ever read The Hunger Games ironically?
When I get really overwhelmed, I think of serenity amidst the sea's crashing waves; and, somehow, I feel better about the chaos that abounds.

Sunday night we all went out together to a club and I'm pretty sure the entirety of the Richmond population who was at Myrtle was there. People had mixed reviews of the night, but I honestly had the world's best time. It was so cool to me that people could all come together in one place regardless of Greek or club sport affiliation and just have a good time.
Apparently this is my default "I-love-you-and-we're-dressed-cute" pose.
Just a super cute pic, really.
I can't imagine a better way to just relax and unwind from the crazy year that'd just past.
"C240 - who do you know here?!"
"Roses are red. / Wine is also red. / Poems are hard. / Wine."
So cute we could be on a website or something.
"We're pH14 cause we're super basic."
Extended phamily.
The last New Member Class selfie of Beach Week 2k15.
Honestly, Beach Week was the perfect remedy for post-finals blues. I was a little nervous going into it because of stories I'd heard from previous years, but I had such a good time: it was basically 24-7 fun, regardless of how you define ~fun.~ 10/10 would reccommend.

| Class of 2015 |

"I hope you never look back but you never forget / All the ones who love you / And the place you left."

I am dead awful at goodbyes. I honestly just pretend that they're not happening at that I'll see those people next week or something that is totally unfeasible in reality. One night a bunch of the seniors came to hang out at the house our pledge class was staying at, which was such an awesome time. 
Charlotte Denoyer, Guardian Angel Extrodinaire
This just makes me laugh, honestly. Meredith's a riot and a half.
I genuinely wish I could've gotten the chance to know these incredible girls more. Because of Richmond's delayed rush policy (which delays Greek recruitment until the spring semester), we only got a semester to know the seniors in our organization, which is such a shame. There are so many girls who are going out into the world to do incredible things (teaching English in Thailand, working at top accounting firms, attending incredible graduate programs), who I was exposed to, but didn't really get the chance to know super well. I keep telling myself this was for the best though, because otherwise I'd have a whole bunch of people that I'd be devastated about losing after graduation.

A group of seniors who do fit that criteria, though, are the ones from the frisbee team. It didn't hit me that they were leaving, simply because they've always been around and there for me. It was so weird to see their apartments packed up and them making plans for going home and then on to their jobs. JOBS. Like, big kid responsibilities.
South of the Border
Last night ever at 2107.
(the president carved out time in his speech for the grads to take a selfie.)
"We've come a long way from where we began / Oh, I'll tell you all about it when I see you again."

PS: saying goodbye to Jessie made me tear up, but shhh: don't tell her.
And with that, freshman year was officially over.

| East Berlin |

[the chronicles of some girls living in a frat house]

As quickly as freshman year ended, the summer after it began. And it started with moving all of my stuff into a frat house. I mean, it's really just your average house, which is usually inhabited by frat brothers. And where they throw parties. But it's okay, because apparently they hired a whole fleet of maids to clean up before we moved in (which is good because I would've been nervous to see what that must've looked like). In the mean time between moving in and starting at my job, I've been learning a lot about the basics of functioning like an adult - namely grocery shopping and cooking.
I made some ravioli and these super killer Brussels Sprouts.
Making food and buying healthy groceries is some serious adulting. 
This was some seriously delicious cilantro-lime chicken.
Curried chicken, aka the night when I made enough rice to feed a small family.
My housemates decided they'd had enough of the frat house vibes and rearranged the furniture in a way that made it more of a home. (The portrait of Bush came with the house, and is actually an iconic symbol of it.)
"This is some serious HGTV shit." -Maggie


"I'm so glad everyone is here this summer."

There is literally so much to do in Richmond that I had to sit and carve out time to write all of this down. It's a hustling and bustling. For example, in a single day, I went to multiple festivals throughout the city and got to just relax and hang out with some of my favorite people. I didn't really get to know the frisbee juniors this semester because of my injury, so it's been really awesome to get to adventure with them around the city.
Shwarma Selfie. @ St. Anthony's Lebanese Food Festival
The most perfect day to have a festival celebrating the River and great outdoors. @ riverrock
I learned how to play Settlers of Catan and beat some of the most competitive people I know on my first try. I have honestly never loved a board game more. What a perfect mix of strategy, luck, and bartering.
river city, summer 2015.

I am thankful for the opportunity to be in such an awesome place for the summer, with such incredible people, getting to do such cool things. While I'm sad that freshman year and all of its novelties are done for now, I am so thrilled with this incredible summer, and adventurously awaiting the great things that are in store for me.

Happily yours,


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