Unpopular opinion: I do not miss college. I mean, what's to miss? The constant partying with your favorite people? Being able to skip class whenever you feel like it bc you know you'll ace the exam? Having all your friends in one concentrated area? Obscenely cheap drink specials? Tailgate season? Being able to take your shift off at work bc it's too beautiful outside to be stuck inside serving alcohol to people having more fun than you? Making ridiculously stupid life choices bc you still can? Alright so maybe I miss college a little. But not in an "I wish I could go back" kind of way, more like a "Holy shit I can't believe I made it out of Morgantown alive, that was awesome" kind of way. I'm way too happy with my life right now for me to want to change anything. Regardless, this weekend when I got to go back to college, I didn't really know what to expect. Mind you, I didn't go back to my OWN university (WVU is very far away and also I would probably die of alcohol poisoning and bad decisions the minute I stepped foot in Motown). See, my middle sister Sam is a freshman at SJSU this year studying Graphic Design and Marketing. Seeing as how I'm the evil big sister leaving her to move far, far away, I figured if I didn't come visit her before I headed out I would lose like a billion cool points (plus I've missed her like crazy since she left - there's no one at home to steal all my clothes and lie to me about it). So I found a ticket through Southwest's "Gotta Get Away" promotion and hopped on a flight to see my favorite miniature human.
So like I said, I went back to college. Not the hard-core-studying-not-enough-sleep-working-too-much-coffee-is-my-savior kind of college, just the parts where you sleep in till noon and eat crappy food and stay up late for no reason and feel like you have no responsibilities whatsoever. The fun parts. After an hour-long evening flight from San Diego to San Jose, I Ubered my way to Sami's campus. On my way, I made friends with my driver, Saiyed, who spent our 20 minute drive telling me about his time in the Merchant Marines and not-so-subtly sharing with me that if I traveled Southeast Asia alone I would probably die - so he was very happy to hear I wouldn't be traveling on my own. It was a very uplifting ride. Sam picked me up at the outskirts of her campus and walked me to her dorm. She lives in a suite, so four bedrooms connected to a common room and kitchenette with two girls in each room and two bathrooms (four girls to a bathroom). Mind you, I was already impressed considering I lived in a 12x15 foot box with a community bathroom shared by 25 girls my freshman year, but it's whatever, we obviously know who the favorite child is. Oh my God by the way all their doors are automatic. Their furniture is modern-looking and they have hotel key-card entries instead of having to actually, you know, USE A KEY. Again, it's totally fine, I'm fine. Back in my day, we had to open our own doors, but obviously times have changed. I'm not bitter or anything though, so that's good.
So spoiled-Sam gave me a tour around her campus, which is conveniently located all in one area so it's not a 10,000 league trek to get from point A to point B like it was for me at WVU. She then treated me to a swipe date (dinner at her dining hall where they swipe your card - she has unlimited swipes bc of course the kid who eats like a damn bird needs access to aaaaaaall the food) and we spent the night catching up. Don't get me wrong, we talk every few days, but she's one of my best friends and there's just not enough time in the day to tell her everything that's going on when we're so far away. We spent Friday touring San Jose itself and then she got me wine drunk and took me to her favorite local jazz bar where the music was great and the company was better. As it tends to when the Janecek's are involved, the night ended with cuddles and Mulan. Saturday was spent at one of the many local malls where we didn't find what we were looking for but we had a great time anyway, followed by an ice cream sundae/movie night, and today (Sunday) has been spent at the library bc Sam is actually a responsible semi-adult who prioritizes her schoolwork. Weird, right?
All in all it's been a pretty incredible weekend. I got to see my little sister as she settles into her life here in San Jose, and I honestly couldn't be more proud of her - although it does make me feel ridiculously old that my middle sister is a freaking college freshman, but I digress. She's one of the most amazing people I know - compassionate, intelligent, wise, and just young enough to be a little dumb and have a lot of fun. Now I know the important things that may seem small but are so vital when you live far away - I know where she spends her weekends and who she spends them with, I know her roommates and the layout of her campus, I know her favorite taco shop and I even got to see where she works. A long weekend wasn't enough time, but I knew it wouldn't be, because there's never enough time. That's just how it works. I haven't even left yet and I already miss her infectious laugh and her unmitigated sass and her willingness to make everyone around her happy. I am so beyond grateful that I got to travel with her to Europe this summer, even though our trip feels like it happened ages ago. And more than that, I'm grateful that not only do I get to know her, but I get to call her my sister and my best friend. She may be a brat who unapologetically takes my clothes and uses my makeup and procrastinates like it's her job and pushes all my buttons, but she's also the girl who knows exactly what to say to make everything better, and when she can't fix it with words, she gives the best hugs. She's the girl who cries because she can't adopt all the puppies at the shelter and believes that everyone deserves to be loved. She is my sister, and I am so blessed that I get to continue to watch her grow up into the extraordinary woman I know she'll be.
On that note, my tear ducts are reminding me that they're ready and willing to be of use, and Sam is reminding me that we haven't eaten in hours.
So until next time you lovely humans!
P.S. Sam has taken approximately 73 naps in the 72 hours I've been with her. Sounds impossible, but she's an overachiever.
P.P.S. Sam has fat knees.
About the Author
Mouth like a sailor, great lacker of empathy, paper cut survivor, avid arguer, harsh critic of people who put clothes on their pets, easily distracte
USA, Mexico, Iceland, Austria, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Morocco, Malta, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Ireland, Denmark, Czech Republic, Hungary, England, Poland, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Scotland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Croatia, Greece
The Baltic countries,
if Covid allows for it (Latvia, Estonia, maybe a stop in Finland)
(in August in the US)