People always say that high school goes by in an instant, but I don’t think anyone actually believes it when they first hear it; I know I didn’t. Walking in the quad for the first time, I remember thinking four years was going to feel like eternity. Thinking back, it’s still difficult for me to process just how wrong I was. Now, less than two months from saying goodbye to high school forever, I find myself reminiscing on all of the incredible memories I made during these past four years. And yet, even with all of the monumental moments—Prom, rallies, birthdays, day trips, football games—I realize that my most cherished memories are the small ones.
I remember library runs with Isabel Kikoshima and Avalon Kelly. And while we always tried to be productive, I love how our study sessions never failed to turn into dinner runs and coffee breaks.
I remember late night drives through my favorite neighborhoods. Blasting my favorite playlist, I loved watching the world slow down at night; people would leisurely walk, restaurants would slowly close, and lights would gently turn off. I always felt fully at peace as I drove around aimlessly.
I remember crying of laughter at ridiculously bad test scores in a random Target. Getting a whopping 37% proved the most impressive of the bunch (and resulted in countless minutes of tangential excuses).
I remember pulling a massive (and I mean ridiculously massive) carrot out of Isabel Kikoshima’s fridge and falling on the ground laughing when we finally figured out what it was.
I remember cuddling up with my friends during movie nights at Julia Kemp’s house. And while we always took forever to pick the movie, the majority of the time, the TV became our background noise. As it played, we talked for hours on end about anything and everything.
I remember waking up at ungodly hours to go to soccer tournaments with Eliana Birnbaum. Even though the heat always resulted in countless complaints, the boba we repeatedly got after always made up for it.
I remember the countless times I mocked Olivia Pocat for willingly walking around without socks. And the multitude of times people collectively bonded together to convince her to stop wearing Birkenstocks to school.
I remember 9 p.m. Crumbl and Chipotle runs. And although some of the flavors were truly horrifying (I think the chocolate minion one still haunts Isabel to this day), I always look back fondly at the enormous amount of cookies we managed to eat.
I remember the millions of 0.5 photos I took (Avalon still makes fun of me to this day). Even though my “0.5 time” will never stop, I appreciate her willingness to drop everything when it’s time.
I remember the insane amount of time (and money) I spent inside of Breaktime. Consistently doing homework there resulted in me trying every single item on the menu many times. I genuinely don’t want to know how much money I’ve spent there.
I remember group hangouts after in-services at work. The complete after-work debriefs (we have to poke fun at our boss just a little) and stories told during them always make me laugh.
I remember the countless times Andy Evans went out of his way to help me. Whether it was reading my essays, checking in on me, or pushing me to go out of my comfort zone, he offered me endless guidance and support. I will always admire him.
I remember driving up to viewpoints and taking pictures with Isabel and Julia. And while we garnered a whopping amount of questionable pictures, I always love scrolling through my photo albums to look at them.
I remember baking cupcakes with Isabel and Avalon. Even though I complained about the (less than five minute) walk to Safeway, buying the ingredients was so fun. And attempting to whisk whip cream by hand proved quite the adventure. (Seriously, who doesn’t own an electric hand-mixer?)
I remember dying of excitement every time someone brought up going to Siam Station. To this day, I have never tasted a better Pad Thai.
I remember grocery store runs to grab snacks for sunny-day picnics. The chocolate cake from Trader Joes will always remain ingrained in my mind (it’s incredibly delicious).
So, as I get ready to leave Westmont, it’s easy to appreciate the countless memories I have made during my time here. And even though I will always look back on the grand moments with love, the small ones always make me smile the most when I think about them.