That time of year has come again. The highlight of any School calendar. Graduation. A mass of beautifully dressed, perfectly arranged young ladies totter into the marquee, past the school logo painted on the grass, excitedly anticipating their opportunity to walk across that stage. At the time, what is said, who wears what and how much of the programme page your school time achievements fill couldn’t be more important.
I vividly remember being the awkward school girl that was so highly strung, I reacted to anything and everything. Fair to say I was profoundly uncomfortable through the whole event but it was a necessity. Speech day truly marked the end of an era, the end of Thirteen Years. Thirteen years in the same institution. Thirteen years which taught me so much and for that I am very grateful. I certainly did not realise how far I had to go and how much more there is to life than learning history quotes and gossiping about the antics of the last social.
Now, I have come to the end of my first year at university. I am sure I still don’t appreciate how far I have to go and I would be lying if I said that I don’t still enjoy discussing the latest gossip and that those historians’ views have not become any more meaningful. However, something has fundamentally changed. I have.
Since leaving school, I have experienced so many new opportunities and people, shaped my views on my priorities and broadened my horizons to appreciate different aspects of life. From wrestling with the coffee machine to create the perfect flat white and singing/ translatingMambo No. 5to a class of fifty Ecuadorian high school students to being the first to race over the line in the Women’s Beginners coxed fours at BUCS regatta, the highs of the past two years have been insane whilst the lows have pushed me further every time.
The last Watson school bill has been paid and my sister is about to become an old girl. Although she, like I didn’t, doesn’t appreciate how exciting the walk across that stage actually is, I am so looking forward to watching her make this transition. She has an amazing amount to give in this world and I hope that she will capitalise on her potential in the coming years.
For me, I also feel I am reaching another turning point. In fact, for the whole of family Watson, June 30th is a significant date.Teko Toois setting off to sail across the Atlantic, home life will change as my sister ventures on her gap year, and for me, next year is when things begin to get real. University now counts, I hope to move into the senior rowing squad and for the first time ever I am going to be living in a house, paying bills and cooking my own food.
Speech day means something different to everyone but for us, this is a significant year. It’s quite appropriate that the day after the event, I am off again. This time on my own, to volunteer in Costa Rica. It was a moment of madness when I booked my flights but this sums up how much things have changed since my speech day.
On that note, I open my blog and start out on the next journey to see what awaits around the corner.