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Today started my summer semester. Just one class, nothing crazy. English Comp II – typical research-and-writing deal, a few papers, the whole shebang.

But considering the facts that it’s 1) Vermont and 2) a community college, I’m sure this semester’s bound to be…an experience. yes. that is a safe way to put it. For starters, my class ranges from a homeschooler who’s taking the class as his first college course, to an ex-army man who carries pliers in his back pocket and hunts and fishes in his backyard, to a retired journalist, probably in his 70s, who is taking classes as a hobby and is attempting to start writing fiction (which he claims is hard because you have to ‘create stuff’). I think he was wearing pink swimming trunks. The kid who sat next to me wants to be a nurse, but currently works at the Rotisserie section of Price Chopper (Vermont’s version of something between a Kroger and a Harris Teeter). He was doing these strange breathing exercises all class, or maybe was just so excited that he was constantly out of breath. I couldn’t tell. But he is a very talented person, because he managed to take every word that came out of my teacher’s mouth and turn it into a 20-minute discussion on things like Jesus’ existence and what he studies on his white board every morning when he wakes up. Of course, some of the discussions were a little more relevant, such as the importance of the existence of grammar. Yes, it should be an eventful experience.

Considering my previous educational experience, Vermont is definitely going to be a bit of an adjustment. I guess I never really thought about it too deeply, but a lot of what I’ve done in schooling has been geared toward a certain sector, if you will, of society. Homeschooling for the majority of my life, then straight into IB prep classes and eventually IB courses, then some college courses while I was still in high school, and then my oh-so-memorable experience at a private Christian college. It wasn’t negative, and I don’t regret it, but let’s just say that if I had opted to stay another year the regret would have kicked in pretty quickly.

And now I’m here. Soon enough I’ll be on the road to a good ole University education, but for the next year I’ll be in classroom settings a lot like the one i just described. I may get annoyed. I may not feel particularly challenged. I may learn so much more than I ever expected. But that’s kinda what I’m doing here, anyway. I mean, heck, if I’m gonna throw myself into a new way of living, might as well not hold back. It’s really all perspective. You could say that I moved in with family, am working at a local Italian/pizza restaurant waiting tables, and going to community college. Those are all true. But you could also say that I took myself away from what I was familiar with to start new adventures in a completely different environment, got a local job in order to start meeting and connecting with people in the community, and am furthering my education by getting general ed courses out of the way at a community college, which is both easier to fit with my work schedule and way more cost-effective. THAT. that is also very true.

Ah, i must away. The parking meter calleth, and the last thing I need is a parking ticket in this town. Oh free parking, how I miss you.

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About claireaudient

North Carolina girl, born and raised, though now I consider Vermont to be home as well. I guess you could say I'm a migrant gypsy farmer, if you were prone to saying such things. I've played the whole society game; I've been to three different colleges, have an Associate's Degree (in Liberal Studies, or something like that), and have worked more restaurant jobs than I care to admit. Through a curious series of events, however, I've formed a different perspective on what life means to me. Instead of slaving away at a job I hate to eke out a mediocre life staring at a shiny screen, I'm living out my dream to travel while learning organic farming and sustainability practices. It's not always easy, but leaving the comforts of routine to experience the wonders of the universe was a choice I will never regret. <3

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