Saturday, March 31, 2012

And so it begins...

When I found out that I would be attending Vanderbilt University this summer, I didn't really think about anything else except going to Nashville. Today, however, it dawned on me that I would be shouldering a whole new set of responsibilities before I even go to Tennessee, and I can't lie; I was pretty intimidated. 
Welcome to Nashville!

The rain had stopped by the time my older sister came to meet me outside of Hercules High School's library, where I had just had my SAT prep class. Together, we walked the short distance to the computer room where Don Gosney was holding the tutorial session for the Ivy League Connection ambassadors. I greeted Don and a few of my friends while my sister found us a computer and seats. I sat down next to her and waited for Don to begin. 

He started off by reminding us about the importance of checking our emails daily. He then transitioned to what responsibilities lay ahead of us, what materials we should (and shouldn't) bring, and he even gave some very entertaining examples of how not to act while on the East coast. Finally, he ended with a tutorial on how to blog. All of this took about two hours and it was all very informative, but I must admit that by the middle of the tutorial, I was lost in my own reverie.

Public speaking, oh no!
I knew that, as a representative of the ILC, I would have to attend several dinners and possibly be asked to give a speech at some of those dinners, but I never really dwelled on that too much because I was too distracted by the fact that I was just going to Vanderbilt. Now, however, I was very aware of the fact that I might have to give an impromptu speech in front of a multitude of people who I don't even know. You'd think someone who is a member of their school's Speech and Debate team would be confident when it came to public speaking, but I was terrified at the idea. I could just imagine myself up there on that stage muttering unintelligibly and playing with my hair (which is something I usually do when I'm nervous). 

I'm going to be more exasperated
than she is...

I was just about to turn to Maryam to voice my worries to her when Don mentioned something else; doing our own laundry. I knew that my family wasn't going with me to Tennessee, and I was happy about that, but I realized that there wasn't going to be anyone to take care of me. If I got sick, I wouldn't have my mom to treat me; If I needed something, my dad wouldn't be there to help me; and if I got into trouble, my sisters wouldn't be there to help me out. I will be completely on my own, which is unusually for me since, as the youngest member of my family, I have always had someone there to take care of me. 

I got this from the Internet...these aren't my hands!
Before I knew it, an hour had passed. While I was still spiraling in my pit of despair and paranoia, Don had reached the final subject of the tutorial: blogging. He told us all about blogging and showed us the applications we would be using. He also mentioned that people all over the world would be seeing our blogs. When I heard this, I suddenly forgot about all of my previous worries; all I could think about now was the fact that I would finally be writing something that would actually be exposed to eyes other than my own.  

I grew excited as I began listing prospective blogging ideas to Maryam, who had opened up several tabs on the computer and searched things like "effective blogging layouts" and "most popular blogs".

At that moment, all I could think about was writing; writing about the people I was going to meet, the places I was going to see, the foods I was going to eat, the things I was going to learn. I realized that my worries were completely ridiculous; as long as I have writing, I can solve any of my problems. I am ready for Vanderbilt and all of the challenges that may come with it. 

This is where I will be spending three weeks of my summer! Isn't it beautiful? 
And so my journey begins...


  1. Narges,

    One thing you all have to keep in mind is that you never would have been selected if we all didn't have confidence in you. And this doesn't just apply to your book smarts. We need to feel comfortable knowing that you can master being away from home, speaking in public, interacting with others and, yes, doing your own laundry.

    We have every faith and confidence in you and your cohort that you'll shine while back in Nashville--that you'll give them something new and positive to think about the next time they think about a yankee.

  2. I'm confident that you will master blogging in no time. It's fun once you get the hang of it. You mentioned that your nervous habit is to play with your hair. For me, it's the beard.