The effects of my late night were magnified by the fact that I had to get up at 6:30 AM to say goodbye to Sehar. I practically forced myself out of bed and outside so that I could do so. I managed to hold back tears as she left, reminding myself that she lives the closest to me out of all of my friends, and that I would be able to see her again. After Sehar left, we had some time left before the next departure, so the rest of us spent the morning together. Next to go was Sam, who had to leave in a rush. This was the point when I started crying. I had warned my friends that I was a cryer when it came to goodbyes like this.
The ILCers and I left at 10 AM. Reva and Jana offered to help me carry my stuff to the taxi, which was so nice of them. When I returned my keys, we asked one of the counselors to take a picture of the three of us. The photos ended up featuring a lot of ugly crying faces, but that's okay. Trying to stretch out time together to the last possible moment, I returned to the front of the quad even after I had loaded my things into the taxi. There, Jack and Helen were waiting for me. Our group exchanged one last group hug and several individual ones. It was a very sad moment when I had to walk away and get into the cab. I knew that I would be able to talk to and potentially see many of my friends again, but I just couldn't believe that our time together was over! It's crazy how close you can get to people over such a short amount of time.
Our flight wasn't supposed to leave until 4 PM, so we had a lot of time to kill even after checking in and going through security. At the Starbucks, I unexpectedly ran into Jack, who was flying out to Maine with his father to meet the rest of his family for vacation. It was a short little reunion, as I had to return to the rest of my cohort, but it made me feel a little bit better. To think, I had thought that saying goodbye at the Quadrangle might have been the last time I saw him. It just goes to show you never know what's gonna happen!
My cohort and I went to a restaurant to grab a quick lunch. I hadn't eaten yet that day, so it was a relief. We spent the remaining time until we boarded the plane at the gate working on blogs and things like that. Kamillah and I took a quick break to grab some Jamba Juice, as well, which we joked tasted like home. Finally, at around 3:30, we started getting ready to get on the plane. My seat was in between Diana and Chris, so once again I didn't meet anyone new during the flight. Oh well, I might've been too tired to make good conversation anyways!
I was trying to get a short nap in when our captain announced that due to weather, our flight would be temporarily delayed. This didn't seem like a big deal, until the short delay turned an hour long. Then, our captain told us that we had to wait in line until we could take off. Once it was our turn, we had burned too much fuel, so we had to go all the way back to our gate to get some more. By the time we were finished, there were 35 other planes on the ground, so we had to wait for the okay to get back in line. We didn't end up getting into the air until after 8:00, four hours later than originally planned.
I was grateful once our plan took off, but at that point I could barely keep my eyes open. I spent most of the flight asleep, along with Diana and Chris, taking a short break from that only to order some food. It had been a very draining day. We landed at 11:00 PM, and had to wait awhile for all of our luggage. Then, there was some confusion with our taxi, which was parked a lot further away from us than we had thought. Luckily, the driver was able to meet us halfway. After hastily making sure that all of our luggage was secure in the trunk, we started to journey back to El Cerrito High School, bringing the entire trip full circle.
Don and all of our parents were waiting for us at ECHS, but this time the lights were on. Acknowledging how tired we all were, Don snapped a few quick shots before sending us all home. My aunt picked me up, as my mom is out of town, but I didn't tell her that much about the trip because I was still exhausted. I climbed into bed as soon as we got to my house. It felt strange, but good, to be sleeping there again.
|One last time together|