Life, Travels

Reflecting on Summer 2017

When planning out my summer, I sat down with a planner and a pencil. After a couple hours of scheduling, budgeting, and planning trips, it seemed like my summer would go smoothly if I stuck to the plan.
To summarize, May through August consisted of
– 3 summer classes
– 1 summer long internship
– Trips to New Orleans, 2 trips to NYC, Greenville, and Huntsville
– Plenty of concert promoting
– Getting accustomed to my role as a club public relations officer
– A part-time job
– Dancing twice a week.
Not to mention balancing meetings and relationships outside of work and school.
I’ll begin with my school work and internship. The biggest take away here was realizing that I truly am capable of more than I realize. I am thankful for Bia who guided me through a marketing internship at CFCArts, as a friend and a superior. I’ve learned how to write a media release, have begun a white paper, and gained experience running social media for an organization. Throughout the entire application and interview process, I was convinced I was unqualified. It took about two months until I began putting together my online portfolio and realized that I have years of valid experience in the field I’m studying. Admittedly, I began promoting at the age of 17 for different reasons and wasn’t completely aware that I was starting to learn what grassroots marketing was about, but it was experience. With this internship under my belt and my plans for future classes, I feel a bit more prepared for the future. Rome wasn’t built in a day. I realize I won’t know everything I need the first day on the job, and that’s alright.

Traveling began immediately after spring semester finals, kicking off with the New Orleans Jazz Festival, a night dancing at Rhythmic Arts Center, and a Coheed and Cambria concert just hours after my plane landed back home.
Two weeks later I would be in NYC for Jenny Sowden’s BABBLE X event. Big. Apple. Balboa. Blues. Lindy hop. Exchange. A mouthful, but absolutely one of my favorite trips of the summer. I took myself on dates to cafes, shopped, and spent time with family and a high school friend.

I don’t plan to convince you now of the incredible addiction swing dancing can be (although I definitely intend to in time), so I will just say that BABBLE X left me inspired and grinning from ear to ear. My crazy admiration for Jenny had me practically paralyzed. I seemed to have forgotten she is still only a person. In any case, watching her dance and watching others who love these dances as much as I do enjoy Gordon Webster play a full night of music, was a feeling of contentment I hadn’t felt in a while.
The last two songs of the evening, “I Like Pie, I Like Cake” danced to with Dan Repsch, and “Summertime” danced to with my good friend Austin, felt like falling in love with dance all over again. International instructor (and Jenny’s dance partner) Dan, is such a joy to social dance with, and he somehow makes me look like I know what I’m doing, combining all three dances in a single song. After the closing speeches, Gordon Webster came back for a final song. I had already changed into street shoes and had decided it was time to leave. Austin quickly made me realize how horrible that decision was as the intro to one of my favorite songs began to build to a crescendo. It was the one of the silliest dances I’d had. We both repeatedly tripped on our own feet and miscalculated momentum. I feel very lucky to have met this dance friend one year ago, almost to the day.
All in all, the trip continued to confirm what I already knew. I was destined to be another cell in the living, breathing thing that is New York City. It will always be home.
July and August would take me to promoting Fueled by Ramen at two Warped Tour dates and visiting Greenville, SC. Dancing in Huntsville, AL felt like a dream.

The day after my return I would see All Time Low at the Orlando House of Blues with my two best friends, and leave for New York again the following morning.

I don’t remember sleeping in much in those months, but the experiences I was able to take advantage of were more than worth it, especially when I got to share them with special people.
On some level, I am grateful for the controlled chaos of those months. My fall semester would not be any easier.