Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day Memories

Boy, I have some boring blog post titles.
I kept forgetting today was Earth Day. Maybe because, as a park employee/botanist, EVERY DAY IS EARTH DAY!!!! Anyway, finally the colorful Google logo reminded me, and I started to think about last Earth Day.
I remember that it was a beautiful day. It was a Tuesday and it was my last day of work at the Writing Center. I remember that carpenter bees were swarming the front porch, and people kept coming in and asking us to kill them. I was getting indignant, explaining to people that the bees don't sting, and I kept saying, "And it's EARTH DAY!" I remember what I had for lunch. I wasn't working my normal schedule that day; I was covering for my roommate as office staff. I remember that I was introduced to, and worked with, another student about whom my roommate had always said nice things. When I went to lunch, she left for the day, and I returned to find a post-it note taped to my keyboard that said, "Sarah, It was really nice meeting you! I hope to see you again soon!"
The Writing Center was not only a workplace that I really loved, but it was also where I met some of my closest friends during my last two years at Rutgers, and some of my favorite acquaintances. In fact, when I first started out as a botany student, after completing my English degree, I was older than my classmates and my science skills (especially lab skills) were a little rusty. Most of my friends had moved out of the area and I felt really lost. The Writing Center was one of the first places where I felt like I fit in. So I remember last Earth Day vividly. For the most part, everything was routine and normal and I had to keep reminding myself, "This is the end." The end of my Second College Career was coming upon me so fast--I kept commenting (mostly in my head) that things were ending before I had a chance to say goodbye. That ended up being a theme of that whole summer...which I didn't know was going to happen.
I am thinking so much about last Earth Day because it was around then--when school ended, when that job ended, three months before my lease ended--that life started to take on that eerie, dreamlike quality it had for...well, that fogginess persisted for months. My life retained that dreamlike feeling perhaps until only a few weeks ago.
Even now, as I move forward, I find myself looking back. I keep writing down details because I worry that if I forget, I'll lose something. I want to remember the details of the time I was so happy, yet also the details of when I lost those things that made me happy. I don't know why; maybe in the future if I am ever unhappy, I can examine these memories and figure out what's missing.

It took me months to throw out that post-it note.

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