So as I sit here in the heat of summer, soaking in the sun from the day rafting the river, I realize I only have 25 days left in Bend. It hit me that it will be two and a half months before I come home again, and I had a little bit of a heart attack.
I love where I live. I have traveled a bit, but never longer than 6 weeks away from Bend. But then I thought about how much I need this.
I have pretty much been with the same group of people for 12 years. Sure, friendships have changed and people have moved, but I have always had the same core group of people around me for 12 years. I finally realize that college is not just a place to learn academically, but to grow as an individual, meet new people, and learn about yourself.
I think the thing I will miss most about Bend, besides my friends and family, will be the mountains. Bend is surrounded by inactive volcanos. I love driving at sundown and seeing the sunset behind them. I have not gotten the chance to see the foothills outside of Boise, but they have a lot to live up too!
I will also miss all the lakes and rivers, but I am excited to explore the waterways around Caldwell. I love the outdoors. In fact, the week before I leave, my family is going to Wyoming to stay in our friends' lodge, where I will be doing nothing but fishing, boating, sleeping and eating, which is my idea of a perfect vacation.
My roommate and I have been talking quite a bit more now, and I'm really happy that things worked out so we could room together. I've never really shared a room with anyone for more than 2 weeks, so I'm excited to get to experience something new right off the bat.
I am also looking forward to the independence I will have. My friends are worried because they don't know how to do laundry or cook good meals, but luckily my parents have trained me pretty well. I'll miss them a lot, and if worst comes to worst they are only five hours away, but I told them they have to wait at least until Thanksgiving for a visit.
Overall, I am getting really stoked to get things going, and I will start shopping tomorrow for dorm gear. I will start to post weekly now as summer is coming to an end. Anyway, I hope all of you are getting as excited as I am to go back to school, and begin a new part of my life.
- Blake Kaufman
Blake is an incoming freshman from Bend, Oregon.