Thursday, May 24, 2007

The end of the beggining

It's a very strange feeling to know that I never have to go back to school again. No more tests, homework, or ridiculously priced textbooks. It's really over, just like that.
Because the weather on Friday hadn't been that nice I was really worried that I would be wearing one of the 20,000 white ponchos they had ordered over my cap and gown for graduation on Saturday, but I woke up that day and the weather was beautiful. It was sunny and relatively warm, but not to warm. I couldn't have asked for better weather. While parents, family and friends went into Williams stadium all of us graduates had to meet in the soccer field. They had us all separated into lines based on our last names, but it didn't really matter and people pretty much just stuck with their friends. We had to be at the stadium at 7:30am and we started to line up to march out onto the field at 8:30. My biggest regret of the whole day was the shoes I wore. They were really cute white cork wedge heals but by 8:30 by heals were already bleeding, it was terrible. I knew I should have worn flip flops.
Alyssa, Joy, Lauren and I all made sure we could sit by each other and we were relatively close to the stage, about 10 rows back on the right side. On each of our chairs were a copy of a book by Newt Gingrich (our speaker) and the graduation program which added to the mountain of stuff I had to carry around all day. Once we got out and into our seats it took another house for graduation to actually start. First all of the professors and faculty had to march out. It was a sea of silly string as they walked by. Everyone wanted to get their favorite (or least favorite) professors. I guess I miss the memo. Then the band played a few songs and the choir sang a couple too. At one point we got so bored that someone in my section started the wave and we did it a few times, then the other sections started to do it and then the families on both sides of the stadium started to do it too. It was awesome.
The ceremony its self was for the most part boring. Jerry JR. got up and spoke and then he started to cry which in turn made me cry. It got even worse later when they played a video slide show of Jerry's life. By four days he missed speaking at our commencement, so close. Then several other people spoke including Newt Gingrich. The only thing I remember well was that we got up and down a lot.
After the ceremony we all split up to go to our separate areas based on schools to get our diploma. Of course I was part of the largest school (arts and sciences) so we had the Vines center. It was such an amazing to walk across that stage, get my rolled up fake diploma and shake Dr. Sneads hand, a much more amazing feeling than in high school. Before graduation we had been sent an email asking us to stay throughout the entire ceremony because a lot of people had just started to leave. I totally understand why, it was SOOOOOO long. I stayed in my seat for at least 6 departments after I got my fake diploma, but It was just getting unbearable and so many others were leaving so I decided to just go. A nursing major made a snide remark as I walked by her, but whatever, she was just mad because they were one of the last schools to go.
After grad was like w whirlwind. I went back to the dorm to finish packing and had to say goodbye to Lindsay and Alyssa for the last time and so many others. Then the rest of the night was spent at the hotel, eating out and semi shopping. Our motel was seriously in the ghetto part of town. There was a big group of people outside of our window until like 3am. It was actually kinda scary. Needless to say we were happy to get out of there the next morning.

All of us wanted to go see Appomattox courthouse since it was so close so that's where we headed first. I didn't realise that the town was actually called Appomattox Court House. I thought it was just the building although I new the papers were signed in the Meade house. It was actually a really nice area, really green. I wouldn't minded to have lived there at one time. There were so many pretty picture opportunities, but my zoom broke right after graduation so I was stuck without zoom for the rest of our trip. So disappointing. After visiting Appomattox Court House we headed north through Charlottesville (with a brief stop at Cheeseburger in Paradise) and then up to DC.
Now our hotel in DC (well actually Crystal City in Arlington, VA) was like heaven compared to the one in Lynchburg. I was very modern, but our beds were heavenly, so soft. I just wish my parents didn't snore and that Emily didn't make weird noises in the night, then it would have been perfect.
So, from the get go I was informed that our time in DC would be doing what my parents wanted to do, I didn't have a say, so, pretty much on this trip I just got to see everything I had already seen. Yippee. The first day we went and saw the White house and the Lincoln Memorial, WWII memorial, Korean War memorial and the Washington Monument. I also took my family to the gardens behind the Smithsonian castle and while they sat out there I went into the Freer Gallery and saw like a hundred carvings/paintings/sculptures fro India, China and Japan that I had learned about last semester. When I walked into the room with all of the Indian art I almost peed my pants, it was so amazing. The next day we went to the Capital building and the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. Again I had already seen everything and was terribly bored so that put me in somewhat of a bad mood, but overall the trip was OK. I learned that I definitely like going on trips a lot more with my friends than with my family.
I felt like we were traveling forever yesterday. First we flew from DC to LA, had a 4 hour layover in LA then we finally got to fly home to Seattle. I got so excited when I could see Puget Sound out of my window. Finally home! You never realize how much you miss something until you finally see it again. So far I havn't gotten a lot done today. I put some pics up on facebook and Myspace. I looked through my amazing SAS yearbook (not that excited about the cover but whatever), and watched the first half of the DVD. I was honestly slightly disappointed with it. I had traveled on many trips with Andy (the camera guy) and a lot of the stuff he filmed that I wanted to see wasn't included and then there's been some dumb stuff on it too. I was interviewed 3 times and didn't make it even once. So far I've found glimpses of myself only once in China and once for the sea Olympics. But, whatever, I guess I can't really complain, after all I got to really experience it.

Ok so now I'm off to tackle my 5 suitcases...

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