I didn’t want to wake up and face the fact that I’d have to be going back to California. I tried my best to stay in bed that morning, but I couldn’t get back to sleep. I ran to the closet to pick out something suitable to wear for the brunch. It was going to hit mid 90’s later in the afternoon, but I brought my blazer along anyways. We left the hotel early so that we could navigate around the triathlon that would be taking place in Providence today. The Brown Brunch was at 11:00 AM, but getting through the traffic took some time. It was an amazing experience being able to talk to some of the alumni and current students. In addition, this brunch was the last time that I would be talking to any of the alumni or students from east coast colleges. At the end of the brunch and after all the fattening of our stomachs, we had a presentation from Guy Sanchez, our fellow ILC cohorts (Tayler and Maddie), Mr. Ramsey, Ms. Kronemberg, and Dr. Jabbar Bennet. They all gave fabulous speeches. Tayler even started tearing up when she gave her final speech here in the east coast. For those of you who don’t know already, I am really slow in terms of realizing things. I knew I’d be going back to California, but it didn’t feel like it was going to be the end of my time in the Ivy League Connection. The speeches made me realize that I wouldn’t be here for long after the brunch.
|All packed, but not ready to go|
I relentlessly left the Alumni Building where the brunch took place. We said our “goodbyes” and “good lucks” to the Session II girls and left back to the hotel. I packed furiously, tossing as many things into my suitcases as possible. In the end though, my red suitcase weighed about 18 lbs. and my blue suitcase weighed about 26.5 lbs. On the contrary, my backpack weighed 17 lbs. because of the two laptops in my carry-on bag. One was my old laptop that overheated last week, and the other was the one that Don let me borrow as a replacement. With 17 pounds on my back, and another 44 lbs. in my two arms, I left my hotel room for the last time, and left for the airport. The rest of the trip back home was mostly sleeping in the plane. However, I woke up every time my dreams became a memory of my past four weeks in the east coast. Even from the other side of the country, I will still remember the times that I had in Providence, Rhode Island.
|Striding triumphantly towards baggage claim|
Every minute that I’ve spent here in the east coast has helped me to change and grow little by little. Sure I’m back in my own room and all, but it doesn’t feel the same. I no longer want to stay in the low temperatures or drive around in the familiar streets in Pinole. Now, everything back in California seems so foreign, not in the way in which I don’t know where I’m going, but rather I’m not used to it anymore. Brown has really opened my eyes and showed me the bigger picture. The world is bigger than I think, but connections aren’t so far away. All I have to do is to reach out and grasp onto these opportunities to make the best of it. I’m glad that I met new people (even within my own district), learn new things, and explore new places. And with this new experience, I will move onto bigger things, because now I know that nothing is impossible.
|Brown Sessions I and II along with alumni and staff|
With that being said, I want to assure Brown II or any other cohorts in the Ivy League Connection that this summer will be the time of your life. Good luck guys!