Sunday, January 22, 2017

College Bucket List

A few recent notable firsts in college: went to San Francisco, went to Taco Bell for the first time, went to a frat party. Excuse the potato picture above.

The frat party was pretty awful; I daresay it was worse than I expected, which is saying a lot. It smelled awful, the music was bad, I had beer spilled on me in the first five minutes, nobody was very interesting. I've always thought I was not a party person but now I know for sure. On the plus side a drunk girl complimented my hair, and also I stole a box of dark chocolate almond mint Kind bars, which I later found out are $15 a box, so at least there's that. If I wasn't going to get a satisfying experience out of the party, at least I was getting something.

But I'm still glad I went. It's a step in the right direction when it comes to #trynewthings because I don't want to regret not doing anything in college once I graduate. That said, there are still a number of things that I want to try, and as this semester marks the beginning of the latter half of my college experience, I realize that I'm starting to run out of time. Without further ado, in no particular order, a list of things I want to do before graduating college:

  • go to a concert
  • go to the beach
  • go on an overnight trip with friends
  • go to Ici ice cream
  • go to Cheeseboard
  • ask someone out on a date
  • take a decal for the fun of it
  • visit every library on campus
  • get A's in at least half of my classes a semester
  • participate in a protest (not just observe!)
  • see the llamas during dead week
  • sunrise hike

I'm sure there are more things I want to do but these are all I can think of for now. To be honest, if I can accomplish everything on this list before I graduate I will be pretty satisfied.

After writing these out, I went back and found my old bucket list from over three years ago. It's surprising to see what has remained the same (concert is still at the top of my list), what is different, and what I have accomplished. I'm looking forward to experiencing more and fulfilling my goals in the next one and a half years — nothing to lose and everything to gain. ◊

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

MDIP — San Francisco!

Something I've been telling myself I would do since the first semester of college is to go to San Francisco for fun. I'm not sure if this counts because technically it's not during the school year but one way or another it finally happened! The Ferry Building [1] is conveniently close to the BART station, and it has a ton of good food, but I had already been there and to the dock next to it [2] for a school club event. Pier 39 [3] is a decent walk away and ridiculously crowded, but the food was good. We had fish and chips and a sourdough bread bowl [4], the lid of which I hollowed out to make a second bread bowl [5]. The main tourist attraction was the 16th Avenue Tiled Steps. I'm not sure how or when I had heard of them, but they are well worth a visit, even though we had to Uber [6] there from Pier 39. The view at the top [7] let's you see all the way down to the ocean. The stairs themselves are mosaics of scenes from under the sea all the way up to the sun and the moon [8]. Beyond that there's another hill to climb [9] where you can see the rest of the city [10][11] and has an amazing view of the sunset [12]. ◊

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Nothing to Lose and Everything to Gain

New year, new me — and oh what a roller coaster it's been already. Future me is going to look back at this and laugh at why I ever thought it was a big deal, but this has all been very new and a huge push out of my comfort zone. I realize this is the epitome of #vagueposting but let's keep it that way. There are some things I won't talk about even on my own blog.

As fun as winter break was, it's time to get back into the swing of things. For the most part I've achieved the things I set out to do, but again, things like driver's ed and starting a journal fell by the wayside. It's all too easy to over-promise and under-deliver, a pattern I fall into more often than I'd like to admit. But the promise of achievement and perfection is too tempting to not mull over. I don't think I've ever been presented with such a favorable confluence of events that realistically put my goals and desires within my reach in all aspects of my life including scheduling, friends, jobs, and living factors.

There is so much potential this semester, but the flip side is the undesirable possibility of failing to meet that potential. I have a lot of anxieties about things not playing out as perfectly as they could be. My schedule is only to be as good as it could be if I actually get into the classes I want, which is no guarantee. Between keeping up with friends and applying for internships and getting a job and self care and self improvement there are a lot of things that I need to balance and devote attention towards.

Above all of that there's the thought of setting my life up. I'm turning 20 this year and soon it's really going to be real and I'm actually going to be self reliant for everything. It's exciting but also there's a lot of boring busywork that comes with it. I need to be prepared for that and have all my legal business in order (like finally getting a state ID) but that stuff takes time to process. They aren't necessarily difficult things, just things that take time to do. It is so difficult to get myself to go out and take care of those things that running the simplest errands makes me feel powerful even though it's probably normal for most people to do. But to me it is terrifying, and going to the financial aid office, mailing packages, and paying my credit card bill makes me feel like a responsible adult who is capable of taking care of her life. Accomplishment is addicting, whether it's the big victories or just the little ones.

Beyond these things that I have to do, I need to make time for the things I want to do. I want more out of my experience and my time in college. There are so many things I want that I don't know where to begin, and so I haven't begun, whether that's defining my sense of style or getting to know people. Again, that's why my goal this year is "Defining Direction" — to push myself to do things to get what I want. Time to stop talking about what I want to be doing and just do it instead. Too long I've been stuck wanting to get to a better place, but too scared to even take the first step. If the start of this year is a sign at all, being pushed out of my comfort zone has allowed me to consider a number of newfound possibilities. As a friend has been telling me, "The more you do, the more you can do."

I don't want to jinx it and end up over-promising and under-delivering again, but despite my anxieties, I'm confident and hopeful that Spring 2017 is going to be a great semester. Even if things don't work out with my schedule, I will have the time and motivation to do what I want, or I'll focus on making the time. There is a lot of uncertainty but there is also more opportunity and ability to pursue my goals than I've ever had before. I'm afraid that I could live the same year 75 times and call it a life, but 2017 has the potential for things to start being different — the year of nothing to lose and everything to gain. ◊