The day started bright and early, as we wanted to be able to eat and get there ASAP. I got ready in Ange's room fairly hurriedly, and then we met Siobhan at the DC. I was feeling a bit sick, perhaps from the
I couldn't find one of my sandals in the craziness that was Angela's room filled with the stuff of TWO people, so I wore my wedges. I may have looked fab, but holy shit was that the worst decision. Graduation is on a hill. A grass hill. A slippery, grass hill. But spoiler alert: I didn't eat it once. Go me?
Anyways. We approached graduation and set out to find seats.
This is actually a really shitty picture and doesn't tell you anything except for the path we took to graduation BUT it's the only one I took before we sat down.
We got our programs:
and found some metal chairs (horrifying) that gave us a not-so-shitty view of the proceedings.
We are cute!
It was this hot:
Really. We were just baking for 2.5 hours. I only wish I had taken a picture of the subsequent sunburn I got ON ONE HALF of my body. (see that one-shoulder dress? another fashion mistake).
Cappy (our president) spoke, a speech that included absolutely nothing noteworthy; I stopped listening when she announced she was going to read a list of 13 things liberal arts colleges supposedly teach you. Hello, we already go here! We don't need a Times article about the merits of liberal arts. Anyways. After that hot mess, we had the pleasure of listening to the lovely Leymah Gbowee.
She's a Liberian peace activist specifically, but really, a human rights activist. She was funny and eloquent, delivering a powerful message to the seniors and hopefully everyone else attending.
"Blossom where God (or life) plants you."
She gave a truly beautiful speech, urging us to follow our calling and leave a legacy. It was absolutely inspiring (and really put Cappy to shame. But I guess that's why we hire a commencement speaker).
By this point, we had wised up and just brought down an entire gallon—twice—from the water tent at the top of the hill.
Hilarious but SO NECESSARY.
I mean, people were doing this:
This is not a drill.
And then me:
I was tanning. OK, burning. But I tried.
We tried to forget the sweat dripping down our chests (and everywhere else) and focused on the graduates. They switched their tassels (is there a technical term for that?)
And then lined up to walk:
Mostly randoms, but Joe is there in the middle smiling.
After the last name was called (OK, the last person we knew), we booked it up to the CDF (I was barefoot at this point, I won't lie) to get to the drama/film reception. We were the first ones there and the first ones to eat the copious amounts of cheese/fruits/vegetables but mostly cheese. Just a couple photos there:
Me and Izzy.
AND THEN. I went back to Angela's room so we could finish packing. That looked a little something like this:
OH YES! There's the sunburn. Cuteness.
I was not happy about any of those tasks. I hated packing and I hated thinking about leaving. I said goodbye to Angela around 6pm that day. And her room was empty just like that and she was gone just like that and the week was over... just like that.
I said a lot of goodbyes that day. But I didn't get that emotional. Because none of them felt final, and I really loved that. I know I'll see the important people again. I know these wonderful people will cross my path again during their adventures in the real world. And everyone else I'll see next year. So. I don't know. It was okay. What really hurt was saying goodbye to the community as a whole. This group of people in this special place; it will never be quite the same. The old ones leave and the new ones come, and something is always fresh even if you don't want it to be.
But it's good. Change is good. The magic nights won't end. There will always be magic nights, waiting to be created by us, anywhere we are.