Done. Finished. Completed. That's the end of my first year of college. The crazy thing is, it happened so fast! My second semester was stressful, busy, yet fun all at the same time. However, something this semester was different from last semester. Although I didn't have much free time, I made an effort to see more of Austin and what it had to offer. This semester of college felt more like college to me. I don't know why, but it just did. Maybe because I had the chance to get to know my college friends even more. Classes were stressful and challenging, but that's what it's supposed to be right? Even though at times the work was overwhelming, I really enjoyed the classes I took and everything I learned.
So back to this semester. I really had a chance to really get to know people. It's interesting to me how college friendships work. The first semester, you make new friends that are in the same organizations or classes as you. However, I don't think I truly got to know them until these past couple of months. After a semester of just being good friends, I ended up just taking my friendships to the next level. It's crazy because I never imagined I would get super close to these strangers I just met in August. They become like your second family, kind of like a home away from home. These friends in college will see you cry, will laugh with you about something silly because you are all delirious from studying, will bring you coffee or food when you need it, and just frankly be your support system. Everyone is kind of on the same boat, that college struggle boat where you have no option but to row together. I'm truly blessed to have made amazing friends that have prayed for me and helped me grow as a person. I'm grateful for all the memories that I made and the birthdays and holidays I had a chance to spend with each one of them.
I finally had the chance to go to Oasis for a friend's birthday! Ahh, you guys have no idea how excited I was. We arrived just in time to take some photos while the sun was setting. I definitely have to come back though to eat outside, but the view was amazing. The ride to Oasis was very hilly and it had a really cool California vibe to it. I was kind of surprised that I was still in Austin. Oh and speaking of pretty views, Hula Hut and Mozart's were definitely pretty cool too. Mozart's was a cute little place to take a break from the regular studying at the library and Hula Hut just made me wish I could visit Hawaii. Hula Hut had a really cute Hawaiian feel to it since all of the workers dressed in Hawaiian style clothing. Hahah. I also had a chance to eat at this really cute pizza place called Conans Pizza. It was one of those quirky food places because it had comics all over the wall and it gave off a cool pizza shop vibe that made it different. I also had the chance to eat at the Cheesecake factory for the first time (I know it isn't an Austin thing), but it was really good and it definitely hit the spot with my sweet tooth. Discovering different food places in Austin make me really happy. Did I mention how I'm trying to eat at every food place on the Drag before I graduate? (Sorry Mellow Mushroom, I didn't get to go before you got closed down).
Oh! I also had the chance to go to Mt. Bonnell which was so beautiful. It made me realize even more why I loved Austin. I had the chance to get away from the "city feel" while I was still in Austin, if that makes sense. The Austin Zoo was super fun too. It was smaller compared to other zoos that I've been too but it was really cool because all of the animals there were rescued. I also recommend going to the Peter Pan Mini-Golf place because that was super fun too. It had a lot of quirky statues with each hole so that was cool. Make sure you go to the course on the right if you actually wanna end up at the Peter Pan because I went to the one on the left so I didn't get to do that. Haha. Guess I'll just have to visit again! I FINALLY had the chance to go to Castle Hill (Grafitti Park) and take photos. It was super fun seeing all the artwork and getting the chance to see the view of the Austin skyline form the top. I was also lucky enough to go see an opera called "Don Giovanni" by Mozart with a friend. Our tickets were only $12 because we were UT students, but normally they're like over $100. Yay! It felt really fancy because most of the people that attended there were I guess the upper high-class Austin people and there really weren't many students there either!
Earlier in the semester I had a chance to host the TIP Scholars Banquet with a friend. Now that was definitely an experience because I had a chance to get to know the associate dean of the UT College of Natural Sciences. Plus it was really cool that Vince Young was there too, sadly he left early so I didn't get to take a photo with him. Being in TIP and having the opportunity to help host the banquet was a blessing. I also had the opportunity to be a part of Longhorn Chi Alpha (and the worship team!) which I could not even begin to describe the love from everyone there. Let's not forget the awesome pre-med group I'm in, Alpha Phi Sigma. Those organizations were the ones I was heavily involved in this past year and I met some of my best friends there. I would definitely recommend getting involved in some kind of organization your first year of college!
ALSO. I had a chance to see The Kooks in concert at Emo's and wow. They were amazing, that is all. I'm so thankful to be living in the Live Music Capital of the World aka Austin. I plan on going to more concerts for sure.
Wow now looking back at it, I made so many fun memories this past semester and this entire first year of college. Although not everything was always pretty, I am truly blessed to have the opportunity to attend UT and make such wonderful friends. It's great to be back home though with my supporting and loving family as well as my loving church family and friends. If I've made so many wonderful memories during my first year, I could only imagine what God has in store for me for the next couple of years.
I hope you have a wonderful and safe summer!