In the depths of winter, I finally realized that deep within me there lay an invincible summer… –Albert Camus
As has become tradition, as my summer vacation comes to an end, I like to recap my adventures, so here it is! Summer 2011! If last year was the summer of new experiences, then 2011 is easily my Invincible Summer. As a dedicated teacher, during the school year I rarely have free time, so I take full advantage of my summer break. I make up for everything I don’t get to do when I’m working. I see my friends as much as possible, I concert, I stay out late, I watch movies, I have date nights more than once a week, I experience new things…I just LIVE.
So you might be wondering why I’m calling this my “Invincible Summer” and if you read the sadface blog post I put up last week, it might make more sense. You see, the news that has left me devastated robbed me of my happiness four months ago. During the last few weeks of school in May I looked forward to summer because I thought I could just lay in bed all day and cry, and do all the crying I couldn’t do before, because I didn’t want my eyes to be all swollen the next morning at work. I have to look at 140+ kids every day! They notice everything! Even if I cut an inch off my hair! I’m serious.
So I did the crying thing for a few days, and then I thought…oh hell no! Not allowed. Grief and tragedy has robbed me of so much happiness and bliss, its not taking my summer too! I am not going to waste away and cry my summer away. NO.
Well, I must have not yelled NO loud enough, because I had some sadface days in bed, but since I had put off dealing with the grief while I was teaching, I allowed myself days to wallow, and be sad, and let it all out.
Last summer I dedicated a page to my experiences during those two months, and I often read it during the school year and smiled as I thought “wow, I really did all that?” in between grading essays. I want to do the same this year. I packed so much into these last two months, I hope I remember it all.
Concerts: I love concerts. I love the energy, the live music, the feeling that they are singing that song to me, and only me. I don’t go to many concerts during the school year. Mainly because they tend to go late, and unless they take place on a Friday night or Saturday night, I can’t stay out late. 140+ kids demand your attention, and they drain you of your energy, in a good way, of course. I’m a responsible adult, and I take my job very seriously. I’m shaping lives here, I need to bring my A game to class daily.
New Kids on the Block/Backstreet Boys – Best concert of my life. My life!
My Chemical Romance – Bucket List status!
Trivia: My beloved Friendly Valley Social Club! I have been on this trivia team for a while now, and I’m on it with some of my best friends. I don’t go to trivia during the school year because I need to be in bed early, and its an inside joke now. Soap, roast, shaving my legs…but I promised the team I would be there all summer, and I was! And when the team made it all the way to the final tournament, I was there too! I look forward to checking my inbox every Wednesday afternoon!
Awesometown Summer Nights: during the week, there was nothing more wonderful than random nights out with the crew. Even sitting on the sidewalk eating Kogi and drinking OG Dr. Pepper and having random conversations. It makes you realize what friendships are about. As Erin said, ”It doesn’t matter what you’re doing, it just matters that you’re out with friends enjoying those wonderful summer nights and it feels like the one you’re in is the most perfect one ever until the next one with similar ingredients comes along.”
Girls Night Out: Erin, S, and I totally bonded over girls nights. Whether it be a Dodger Game or Will’s birthday, we know how to have fun. And of course, getting lost and ending up in Torrance will always be a great memory! And photo booths too!
Gold Class Cinema – Our New Obsession: S and I were looking for something to do and decided to check out Gold Class. Not knowing quite what to expect, we were blown away by the experience, and will head down to Pasadena often to spoil ourselves! Baller Girls Night!
Girls Night Out +N8: We took N8 out on a little adventure to Pasadena a few weeks back. He didn’t know where we would end up but was totally game to it. Even when we serenaded him with NKOTB songs. S and I keep saying, the look on his face made it all worth it. Like a kid on Christmas morning…he showed us so much appreciation. Melt. And of course his friend Waze when stuck in Hollywood traffic will forever be a good time.
Hello Kitty Cruiser: Last year I bought my dream bike, and finally took delivery of it this summer. It is so beautiful, and so pink. I love it.
Red Bull Soap Box Race, DTLA: I went to this two years ago and had a blast. So, when Scott and Bree mentioned they were going, N8 and I were quick to tag along. What an adventure!
Friday Night Lights: Easily my favorite documentary, this summer I finished watching the whole series, and it is easily one of the best television shows ever made. Coach is the epitome of everything a man should be. Seriously. I miss this show, and I look forward to the movie.
Movie Nights: Thanks to all my free time this summer, I got to watch a BUNCH of movies. This is something I rarely do during the school year. I totally got my money’s worth on Netflix instant play! Weeee!
Six Flags Magic Mountain: even though I live so close to MM, I rarely go, and there were many roller coasters I had never been on. Last month I finally did Six Flags the right away and went on so many rides! My favorite roller coaster is Green Lantern. Can’t wait to go back!
Comic Con: I enjoyed SDCC last year, but kind of rushed through it. This year, I took my time and saw so many people and did so many things. It is seriously an experience. I’m a fangirl.
OC BBQ Fest: One of the last outings before Aleks left for Mammoth. A day of friends, fun, BBQ, knights, and more…and Gaston!
Dodger Game: I had never really been to an actual Dodger Game and had the full experience so when Erin suggested it for girls night, I was totally interested! Then a week later I won tickets on the field level! Sitting close enough to almost get hit by the baseball…priceless.
Date Nights: During the school year, I’m usually at work until late, and I’m too tired to go out…this summer however, I was free to enjoy multiple late nights and had many pretty sweet dates out and about. I’ll miss date nights during the week though…
Fourth of July: This year, I was adamant that I wanted to see fireworks for the holiday, to the point where I was pretty stubborn about it. What followed was one of the greatest nights out in Awesomtown. He took me to a “secret” spot within the city limits where I could see fireworks from all different directions. One of the best memories from summer 2011. So romantic.
DTLA Crawl: It really is no secret that I love Los Angeles, and I spend a lot of time exploring downtown LA. So last week we went on a little mini crawl hitting up some of my favorite spots, including two from 500 Days of Summer! The Bradbury Building and the bench at Angels Knoll. We took photographs on the bench that will forever be my favorite. So tragically lovely.
X Games – EnduroX: I randomly ended up at X Games last summer because I had never been, I had free time, and hey? Why not! So, this summer, I had nothing to do, and thought…why not? So, Susan, N8 and I went to see EnduroX which is a tricked out obstacle course + motocross. Our tickets ended up being in the front row and it was a wonderful experience!
I know there is so much more that I’m forgetting to mention. I’ll update it as I remember…
Yes, I’m knee deep in a terrible winter storm, but I didn’t want that storm to rob me of my summer. And as I read over this list, and think back to everything I saw and experienced this summer, I realize that it was an Invincible Summer. Grief tried to take my summer, tragic circumstances beyond my control tried to take my summer, someone I cared about chose to abandon me this summer, but look at that list! Summer clearly won. My summer, although not without tears, was invincible. I lived. I experienced. I loved. I saw. I did. In my own way, in my own weak way…I won.