Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Day in the Life of a High Schooler (Almost)

Hoo, boy, I'm tired.  

Today I woke up at 5:20 a.m.  It was not a pleasant feeling, because I usually wake up ten minutes later, and ten minutes of sleep is a lot.  I'm beginning to realize that.

The reason why I woke up TEN MINUTES EARLY (*gasp*) is because I wanted to prepare for today.  Prepare, Prepare, Prepare (I'm not especially good at that, so I have to work extra hard).

The schedule for today was crammed because I had tennis from 6:15 to 10, and Orientation started with Link Crew Orientation at 10:30.  So I stayed at school straight after, changing.  

We lifted weights (lower body workout), ran sprints and did stadium jumping, and played tennis.  After playing for almost four hours every day, I usually just eat and sit around for the rest of the day. 

But nope.  Today was Freshman Orientation, and they had a big shebang for all of us newbies.

In order not to look like someone ragged, I changed in the restrooms, which also happened to be right where the band was practicing.  I came in close quarters with a set of chimes, let me tell you that.

By the time I came out, the freshmen were arriving, and I felt SO awkward with my overstuffed tennis bag.  My mom wasn't at the school yet, so I just hung around.  Then the doors opened and I rushed to get my bag to my mom, thinking the orientation was starting.  

It wasn't.  As I entered the doors, a multitude of Link Crew members cheered me and tried to give me high fives (I pretended to be too cool to return them; I know, I'm terrible).  A couple people on my tennis team said hi to me (thank you so much...I felt SO awkward).  

Oh, and let me tell you what Link Crew is.  Link Crew is basically made up of people in the school who try to help the freshmen become immersed in the social life (by planning activities, organizing events, etc.).  Basically volunteers who cheer people on.  I think it's great, except that sometimes Link Crew people think of helping freshmen outside of their normal life or whatever (am I making sense?).  For example, a sophomore I spoke to said that sometimes they ignore you after the Orientation.

It's not a true Link Crew if you don't follow up on the people you meet with.

Every time a person entered the door, the Link Crew would go berserk, clapping, high-fiving, etc.  (It was awkward).

It got even more awkward when the first person who spoke to us had us form a massage line (thank goodness I was surrounded on both sides by girls), and then had us play Simon Says.  Then we were divided into different groups.

It was an *interesting* experience, but it got better after that.  Our Link Crew leaders had us eight kids play a couple of warmup games.  I could tell our leaders, both juniors, felt kind of awkward.  I think the activities were supposed to help teach us to communicate with one another, but the problem is, organized activities that are too organized--especially with activities that are supposed to "teach" kids--just end up making the kids think, "This is a drag," or something equally negative.  Kids like we are--adolescent (ages 13-18)--think that we're "too cool" for teaching games.  Even if we don't really think that way, that's the mentality behind everything we do and everything we make fun of.

I think we all loosened up, but with my doubts, the time turned out to be pretty cool (I think maybe a couple other people could disagree with me, but I had a good time).  In the end we got SpongeBob party hats (others got plastic Hawaiian necklaces, while others got firefighters' hats, while others got plastic buckets that they wore upside-down on top of their heads--don't ask me why), and I think I might have made a potential friend.

After, I had a slice of Little Caesar's pizza, and I waited for my mom.  Then I noticed this super huge line growing (they were waiting to register; they had us go in controlled groups).  I didn't join the line--I wanted to wait for my mom--and then I decided to join the line, and I asked a lady to help me, but I couldn't follow the directions she asked, and I think I frustrated her (well, that's not the first time I've frustrated someone; I apologized, though), but finally I got into line, even though I was probably one of the last ones to do so.  

My mom got frustrated at me (thanks, or no thanks, to my unthinkingness) and she went to wait outside.  

Meanwhile I was stuck behind an extremely obnoxious group of boys.  Extremely.  Honestly.  They were bumping each other, yakking away with each other, bursting out laughing when someone bumped into a row of tables that were leaned against the wall.  

I resigned myself to my fate, apologized to my mom (via text; thank you, Alexander Graham Bell), and took out my iPhone (which I thankfully had the foresight to bring, along with a pair of earbuds).  Then I plugged one ear, turned the volume up, and started bopping along to 1 Girl Nation, a new five-part Christian girl group (squeee!!!!) that I recently found.  Their debut album came out a couple days ago, and I really like them.  I began with "Count Your Rainbows," which has a really awesome rapping part in it, and wound my way through "Love Like Crazy" (feat. Royal Tailor), "1 Girl Nation (which explains how girls need to unite under Jesus), and "Invade" (which is kind of techno, and might sound offensive to an atheist, but I like the beat, and besides, I'm not an atheist ;).  

Even though I had been pretty wound up (argument with your mom, stuck in a huge line, behind a bunch of weird boys), I felt myself relaxing as I listened to 1 Girl Nation's chatty, catchy stuff.  I'm not kidding.  This might sound cliche, but moments like those happen when you find yourself relaxing to wonderful music during a long day.

I unwound, but kept an eye on the boys in front of me.  

Then they *happened* to find out that you needed a parent to sign away a bunch of permission forms.

Give me a break.  

I guess they don't have as wonderful parents as I do, who gave me the registration forms and had me sign them instead of me having them sign it.

Gradually the boys in front of me discovered that their parents had signed it, but one kid found out that his parents hadn't done it.  

Then he walked over to one of the tables leaning against the wall, used a pen somebody gave him, and promptly forged his parents' writing.  I was close enough to tell that he wasn't doing a very good job.

I overheard someone later and found out that he'd gotten caught.

After waiting an hour in line, I finally got to go around to the different "stations" they'd set up.  Paperwork station at the front office, booster clubs, ASB, picture taking (they had a nifty little machine that printed your picture out on an ID card), class assignments, etc., finally ending with picking up your books (we get two sets, one to keep at home and the other in the respective classrooms).  Right now, I have books for my biology, spanish, and math classes in my possession (apparently literature is online).  

Those are my classes (if you're bored to death right now, I don't blame you--this is a long post, and I needed a picture to break it up).  I'm happy to get into Language Arts 1 Honors--I mean, can't you tell from all these blog posts?--and yes, I made Geometry Honors.  I can guess that I did well on my retake of the math test.  Those two months of studying paid off.  I wanted to get into Biology Honors, but I'm in Biology, for some reason.  Health/Careers is a given--it's one of the core classes, for some reason.  Spanish 1 is an elective (I just looked in the book and I have no idea what the various Spanish phrases are.  I guess I'll find out in class).  And P.E. is another core class--and that's tennis!  Yay!  I made JV!!!!!!

And that's it.  I came home, plumb tuckered out.  And I figured out that I missed Laser Tag with my tennis team at 4.  Oh, well.  I'll have to hang out with them later (we have the whole year to, anyway).

And here I am now, writing my weird, boring, zany, random life for you to read. 

I've been sheltered for almost my entire life, and now I'm out in the open.  This is the real world.  My bubble has been popped.  Well, not entirely.  Because my town is comparatively conservative (many go to the local churches), we're probably sheltered from the real world too, though not as much.  I mean, we don't have to go through any of the things that, like, inner city kids have to go through (I'm not joking--there are metal detectors and security guards in inner city high schools).  

So, really, while my outermost bubble has been popped, my inner bubbles haven't.  As long as I block out most of the world's noise and listen to the message 1 Girl Nation and many other Christian artists bring, I think I'll survive high school ;)

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