Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Here comes the bride [substitute college graduate]

I am a graduate. Somewhat. Actually, I'm not, but I like to pretend that I am because it makes me feel grown up and important.

And all of my limbs are still mostly attached. And as rugby is clearly the most important thing in the world I will talk about that first. (It is also largely responsible for the fact that I may not be able to walk after the age of thirty, but that is insignificant because I will be practically past it by then anyway. It is downhill from here onwards.) After half of the world left to go home, some intrepid explorers beavered their way back to Mount Holyoke in time for our alumni game. This is effectively an excuse for the alumni to make us feel bad about ourselves while disembodying our limbs. Or something similar. However, I only sustained mild knocks to two knees (lucky that I have four, really), and a few weeks later they are only about 29% painful, so no harm there. Plus one of them made an exciting crunching noise. Hardly surprisingly, the alumni team won, but we all had a good time, including coach, who started playing for us and then switched over to the dark side near the end of the game.

Because only having one big event in one day would be boring, I rushed from the match to the Commencement concert, where we sang somewhere in the region of 200 pieces of music which we learnt in two and a half days. Whilst wearing musical ties/do-rags with peaks and 'biker babe' written on them/fake moustaches. We also had many adventures as the mischief fairies, cookie fairies and other such larks. We came, we sang, we conquered. I had managed to learn all of the pieces without the result of such effort being death, and then I went back to the rugby social. Of course. And then I may possibly have died in a corner.

One of the most exciting adventures of this period--maybe even the entire year--was our trip to Interskate 91. In the mall, there is a REAL rollerdisco! I was incredulous that such a thing could exist, let alone be upstairs and attached to a laser tag thingum. They even had proper roller skates, none of this fancy in-line malarky (although they had those as well). The laser tag turned out to be somewhat less than perfect, consisting of a room with bits of painted corrugated card hanging from the ceiling to hide behind. The game lasted five minutes and half of the guns didn't even work.

There were more Commencement-related adventures after this: Baccalaureate--some speeches and we sang something whilst dressed in the silly outfits, i.e. graduation gowns made in 'one size fits all' the same time. I am not even joking, as Sarah and I actually tried it, and it wasn't uncomfortable except for the neck hole trying to strangle me. However, I maintain that this is as a result of her being about four inches taller than me. Had she also been a leprechaun we would have been fine. I also walked in the laurel parade (everyone wears white and carries this enormous string of leaves and then throws it onto our founder's grave whilst singing). I was supposed to be behind the alumni and in front of the seniors carrying a red rose, but so many people gave me the wrong info that I ended up with the seniors. Oh well! Commencement involved more wearing of the silly outfits in the sun and many of us melted in our seats like the wicked witch of the something-or-other. And as soon as the ceremony ended it rained. The whole weekend seemed to involve food--which seems to be a common theme for the Americans--and I build another fort. This one was possibly even better than the last. I had my bed raised up on two sets of risers, lofted as high as it would go. The other bed was at its lowest height pushed next to it and under the tall bed was another mattress. What this allowed was a zig-zagging, bed-rolling, death-defying, monkey-eating adventure. (I am actually lying about the monkeys.) You could lie on the top bed, roll sideways onto the other bed, roll sideways onto the mattress and then slide under the bottom bed and out the other side. You could then climb up and do it again. What this fort allowed was for Jess and Hannah to sleep in my room, and me to nearly knock myself out on the bedpost.

Ice cream was eaten, bags were packed and I made it all the way to Reading, MA, to Jess' house for the start of an epic journey to Darkest Peru, a.k.a. Montreal, Canada. However, that is a tale for another day.

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