On May 24, 2008 (that would be yesterday) I graduated from UMass Amherst. It was a long and fun four years, learning not only in the classroom but outside as well. I had the chance to make some great friends and learn a lot about life. I think back to who I was when I got to the university and who I am now. Back then I was just a green freshman, someone that my current self would laugh at and call an idiot.
In studying abroad, I gained vast amounts of knowledge in world matters and other related areas that I could go on and on about. Studying abroad gave me the confidence to go on to other ventures, like moving to Ecuador for a year in the Fall. And once again, as my senior year passed by in a blur, I’ve been left to wonder, where did the time go?
The Smashing Pumpkins said in a song, “Time is never time at all, and you can never ever leave, without leaving a piece of you.” As much as I’d like to sit around and remember the good old days, dreaming of how much fun I used to have, I know that I need to let it go and try to get a job, to move on with my life. There are always regrets and thoughts of what else you could have done, and though reminiscing always makes everything look draped in gold, I know that there were ups and downs.
Yesterday, while waiting in the cue, for some reason I thought to myself, “It was the best of times, it was the blurst of times.” Of course, that’s only funny to you if you’re an avid Simpsons fan and remember that lone quote from some episode I can’t recall. However, the line still holds up. Dickins had a point, and though “worst” becomes “blurst”, it only re-enforces that nothing is perfect. I loved being a student, and I had a great time changing and growing. But at the same time, it’s frustrating and aggravating, you go through bouts of depression, and you wish you had just a little more money, if for nothing else than to buy a decent beer for once, rather than a 40 ounce of malt liquor.
So now I’m back where I started. The hometown. I went from a small town with a big college (and a couple small colleges) to a small town with nothing but proximity to Boston. Yesterday I stood among 4,000 fellow students, most of which I might never have met, yet we all shared the bond of completing school at the same time. It will probably be the only time I stand on a football field surrounded by 20,000 “fans,” so I took it all in carefully. I just wish Bill Pullman would have said something along the lines of “Today, we celebrate, our commencement day!”
Today I drove back from town slowly, with nothing very important to do. With the windows rolled down, I could smell the barbecues from each house as I passed, preparing for the Memorial Day parties. Hot dogs, sausages, burgers, steaks, and everything else wafted into the car. Sometimes small towns aint so bad. And though within just a couple of weeks I’m sure I’ll be itching to get out, for now, it’s a welcome change from the college town scene.
And now with not much else to do, I must find myself a job. I’ll leave you with these lyrics from The Beatles, which I’ve found pretty telling from time to time. Now that I’m in those shoes, it puts a new spin on them.
Out of college, money spent.
See no future, pay no rent.
All the money’s gone, no where to go…
But oh, that magic feeling, no where to go. No where to go.