Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Not Just Another Summer

For the youth of the world (along with a lucky minority of adults), summer vacation is 3 months of down time to recharge, explore, and meet new people.  The beauty of summer is that you can forget about everything else in your life, and focus on what is happening right then and there.  Whether you spend it in Paris, Manhattan, or Wayne, is less important than the inevitable change of pace that summer brings to the monotonous life of a full-time student.
Thus far in my life, summer has been the time when nothing mattered, when there was no care in the world.  One summer I drove around Maryland playing baseball.  Another one, I sat in a tiny shack and served snowballs.  The idea that one day I might not have summer vacation scheduled into my life was never something that crossed my mind.
What I failed to realize in the past is that summer is a time of opportunity.  A summer internship could turn into a job for the next 30 years.  A summer romance could turn into a lifelong commitment.  More importantly, however, than these tangible opportunities is the freedom attached to this block of time.

As I sit here packing my last few things away for the semester, I can't help but feeling nostalgic.  Anyone who reads this blog knows that's a pretty common occurrence for me, and it's not as if a semester in Spain is going to be a step down from summer vacation, but it truly is sobering knowing that I could very well be approaching my last summer as a student.  Often times, summer is when kids grow up, when they learn independence, when curiosity becomes ambition.  Yet summer is also the very thing that keeps us young and fresh, that reset button that puts us back on track every year.  I certainly learned more about myself these past two months than I could have possibly anticipated, but right now I'm feeling pretty old.