Home > Personal > 24: A Year for Every Hour in the Day

24: A Year for Every Hour in the Day

Today I turn 24. As always with these milestones, I am both surprised how quickly it came up and amazed it hasn’t happened already. It’s been a very good year for me. I turned 23 while a graduate student at Boston University, celebrating with dessert and classmates. I worked hard at school, went to Chicago for the AAAS meeting and did my utmost to get an internship. I completed the semester and spent the summer working at Xconomy writing a lot of stories I’m proud of and learning a lot in a fun work place. I then went back to Boston for my last semester where, despite an incredibly stressful long-form feature writing experience, and a not always less stressful web site project, I graduated in good order. All of which led to my current position in Germany with ESO. Not, professionally speaking, half bad.

On a personal level the year wasn’t as good. My mother’s illness was hard, but her recovery has been nothing but a relief. My social life took a back seat to studies and writing but I still managed to make some wonderful friends (even as some old friends dropped permanently by the way side). Travel, one of my real passions, was a major feature of the year what with Chicago, several trips to New York, a visit to Savannah, Georgia, a week in Los Angeles, and of course my time in Europe. I look forward to even more while I’m here and expanding my circle of visits ever wider.

Most of my childhood birthdays are a blur of bowling, cake, movies, and sleepovers but ever since I turned 18, each year has had a crystallized place in my memory. At 18 I started a livejournal, thought about graduating high school and spent the evening with family. At 19 I was skiing in northern Arizona, trying rum, and getting food poisoning from a Dairy Queen. When I turned 20 I was in Israel, eating a muffin cake and relaxing after a day in the onion packing plant with a set of truly great people who I often miss. Turning 21 was perhaps the lamest, with a living situation that was utterly depressing and a night out trying bars by myself. For my 22nd however, I threw a nice party in my apartment, had a lot of people over and started to realize I was graduating college. Of course I had just got into graduate school so I wasn’t overly nervous. Last year as I said, was dessert in Boston, and now, turning 24, it’s Thai food in Munich and out to drink at a place called Peaches.

Looked at all in one go, not a bad few years, and I’ve been really lucky. I’ve learned how important it is to seize experiences when I can, and I pride myself on never making the same mistake twice (although it’s truly unbelievable how many varieties of error there are). I’m happy with where I am at this point, and more importantly, I know things are going to get even better. For all of you who were a part of my year, even if only in the past few weeks, even if only occasionally by phone of online, thank you for continuing to shape how I think and act, and I cannot wait to see where 24 takes me.

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