Man, this year has been one hell of a ride. Without further ado, here are some of the highlights:
- After finishing my extended research paper about the women of Les Misérables, I continued my love affair with French literature by voluntarily reading (and loving) Notre-Dame de Paris, L’homme Qui Rit, and Le Fantôme de l’Opéra.
- I performed in two well-received theatrical productions, in the ensemble of Pippin with the local community theatre and as Mr. Bratt in my high school’s production of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying. Cool Things I Did in the former include a sword-fighting scene, having three lines, and entering from the house in the opening number. The Cool Things I Did in the latter are much cooler because I played a businessman with two secretaries. When I went into the girls’ dressing room in costume, many of my castmates mistook me for an actual man. I had a lot more lines in this one and I tap danced.
- I was in a car accident less than a week before my 18th birthday . I hit a patch of ice on my way to school. I was okay, but my car wasn’t.
- A random French guy started following me on Twitter and became my online buddy. I figured that had to be a sign that I was moving up in the world. Since that was in March and he hasn’t asked for compromising photos or anything like that yet, I think I can safely conclude that he’s not catfishing me.
- I graduated from high school in the top ten of my class and later received my IB Diploma, which I like to think of as a lovely framed piece of paper that says “LAUREN HARSH IS AN INTELLIGENT HUMAN BEING” in three languages.
- I spent the summer working in the kitchen at a nearby summer camp for children. My co-workers were some really cool cats. Some of the kids were too when they weren’t asking me if I was thirty years old or refusing to take their vegetables. It certainly wasn’t an easy job, but I’m still thankful that I had the opportunity to do it.
- I started this blog! What started as a thought that came to me while I was mindlessly washing dishes one day has now been running for four months.
- I became a student at U of M. I was so eager that I changed my current location on my Facebook profile immediately after I moved into my tiny dorm.
- I jumped on the Doctor Who bandwagon and it is even greater than I hoped it would be.
- I signed up for a writing seminar that sounded like it was about gender roles in various cultures. It was about the Indonesian social hierarchies and traditional Indonesian music. My classmates and I bonded over how much it annoyed us. I wish I were making this up.
- I went to my first real concert and it was fantastic. But no, annoying classmate who asked, I did not cream myself.
- For Halloween I dressed up as Gwynplaine from L’homme Qui Rit. I got a lot of compliments on my makeup (which involved rolled up kleenex, liquid latex, blood gel, lipliner, and foundation), but EVERYONE thought I was the Joker. Later that night I tweeted a picture of myself in costume to Marc-André Grondin, who played the character in the most recent film adaptation…AND. HE. FAVORITED. THE. TWEET. So yeah, that more than makes up for it.
- I had two completely spontaneous French conversations with strangers. The first was with a Québecois musician who got a sandwich at Jimmy John’s one day and the second was a retired French teacher who I met at the movie theater. Both were very nice people.
- I saw a live broadcast of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of Richard II starring our friend David Tennant. It was absolutely chilling and magnificent, even when I wasn’t taking into consideration that I had just walked two blocks to see a play from London.
- I got the go-ahead to take a 300-level French class next semester.
Overall, this has been the most eventful year of my entire life. It was full of ends, beginnings, and seizing opportunities. I’m still just beginning to figure out where I fit in at this trying but exciting new chapter of my life. Though next year will surely be full of surprises, I’m stepping into it with hope.