Sarah is one of my closest friend. I would even go as far as calling her one of my best friend.
Sean and Sarah (which from now on if I mention both of them they will be referred to as S&S) have been through a lot together and I was very happy to be part of their wonderful day. S&S had a shorter time period to plan their wedding because Sean had to leave for basic training within a couple of months.
Sarah and I hit multiple places to find a perfect wedding dress. In St. Augustine, our first stop, we came close to finding it. But when we looked at the price tag, she was disappointed. It was out of their price ranges. This continued to be the common occurrence at the next few places we went to.
Finally, one day we hit up David’s Bridal on the annual sale day (by pure luck). We narrowed it down to two dresses. But she definitely fell in love with one over the other. It being $99 might have factored into it. Sarah also really loved the veil that she tried on. It matched the dress to the t. (I found my bridesmaid dress on amazon.)
The church and the reception hall was lovely. Our mutual friend, Gloria, and I drove up earlier to help everyone set up for the wedding and being as I was the maid of honor also played a deal in that. We set up the reception hall within hours before the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner. Then came the big day. We woke up early. Morgan got us all breakfast while we got ready. Wedding between S&S was beautiful. I was beyond ecstatic for my best friend!
Side Story: The church was by the beach so a few of us hit the beach after the wedding.
P.S. Morgan was an amazing photographer. She took all these amazing pictures.
P.S.S. Pokemon Go also came out during her wedding weekend. We were obsessed.
You know the one upside about getting hit by a bus?
YOU GET A RENTAL TRUCK!
So let me just start at the beginning so you get how the best two and a half weeks came about.
My cousin came up to Gainesville to visit her friends for a birthday so I planned to take her to the batting cage. I woke up earlier than I had all summer to pick her behind up. She was staying on campus at her friend’s dorm. We hadn’t even pulled out of the parking lot yet as a bus turned in and smashed into my back bumper. Not any old bus. Not even the UF school bus. [Also known as the RTS] An Alachua county school bus.
My cousin and I just turned and look at each other for a good ten second and then burst out laughing. Side Note: Back when I was in high school, my car also get damaged because I was with her.
Did all the usual stuff. Called the popo [police]. Got a police report. Went home called my insurance. Called their insurance – through the school board which is located in Tallahassee (was a real hassle until I got the right number). Got quotes on the damages.
At first, I wasn’t going to get a rental car but then I got the estimate and they said I had to leave the car in the shop for about a week. I had work so I couldn’t do that so I contacted the school board again and they were on point. They got me a rental the day I turned my car into the shop.
Enterprise came and picked me up at Toyota. When I got there, there was a lot of paperwork to fill out for a new car and they had a situation where a guy couldn’t come pick up his truck. The manager asked if anyone wanted a truck and the wait time would not be so long. AND OF COURSE I GRABBED THAT DEAL! I have always wanted a truck but I can’t afford one just yet. And just as the manager said, right after I said yes, all I had to do was signed my name for the truck and they sent the bill to the board.
The truck was everything I asked for. My friends made me drive everywhere because it was that amazing. We took it everywhere. To the springs. Even the shortest distance – the mailbox. I even looked up the price for one of those trucks. I’ll own one one day. When the week was about to end, I called the shop and they said it was actually going to take them longer because once they took the whole trunk apart they noticed damages that they couldn’t see before. They emailed me the new estimate and I got in contact with the school board again. They extended the rental again. It was beautiful.
But eventually every good thing must come to an end. The day to finally turn the truck back in was a sad day for me. That day, a couple of my friends and I took it for a drive. We drove to the next town over and just had a blast.
There was one downside to the truck though. It was SOOOOO MASSIVE that parking it in Gainesville’s narrow parking spots were crazy.
p.s. I don’t think we took enough pictures of the truck. 😀
Our friend Nick was about to be deployed to Japan for what feels like forever. So we thought the best going away present was to photoshop all our faces into the best photo ever. I’m glad we all became friends. Even if it was only for a single moment in this lifetime.
Five years. That’s how long I’ve moved away from home, but this is the first year I won’t be going home for Thanksgiving. Won’t be eating homemade turkey and stuffing. No home cooked food not made by me. Won’t be surrounded by family.
This year I will be staying in Gainesville with one of my roommate, Bhoomi. She was going to go visit her sister for Thanksgiving but her sister decided to head to New Jersey to visit some of their family. I, on the other hand, had work all surrounding Thanksgiving so I saw no point of going home.
We decided to have a Thanksgiving dinner together. She plans on making green bean casserole and something with pumpkin. [She told me what it was called but I don’t like pumpkin so I didn’t remember what she said it was.] I decided to make turkey pot pie and mini apple pie, but when I woke up this morning I had a craving for crumble mac & cheese so I decided to make that too.
Bhoomi wants to dress up even though it’ll just be the two of us. This should be interesting. And fun. I’ll post pictures later.
HAPPY TURKEY DAY!
Here’s the picture I promised.
When I first moved to Gainesville, I was a little apprehensive. I didn’t know what to expect. Living on my own. Doing my own laundry.
Cook. Also, I was really sheltered. I didn’t even know UF existed until I had to apply for college. One of the only two colleges I applied to. I heard of UCF because we frequent Orlando a lot even though it was an hour drive for us. My parents are pretty Asian and Orlando has a decent “Asian” town.
University of Central Floria was my top and only choice. I’m really family oriented so that means I would have been closer to home and what not (home cooked meals, etc.). Then, my aunt was telling me how my cousin was doing at University of Florida (how I was oblivious that she was attending UF for a whole year was beyond me) and somehow that lead to her convincing me that I should apply there too. I applied. Got accepted into to both schools, but UCF was offering me more money upfront. Everyone in my family persuaded me to go to UF. My, now, best friends also got accepted into UF so that was a plus. Kate and I roomed together while Gabby lived on campus and later moved in with some of her other friends.
At first, I was
unappreciative of the beauty of campus. Just going to class everyday and leaving campus at the earliest possible moment. I didn’t stay longer than needed. But over the years, I began to notice slight things that stand out. I started to hang back after class. Text my go to peeps, Kate/Gabby/Sarah (Kate and I met Sarah in the church we were attending at the time and later found out we had a class together) if they wanted to grab Krishna or something on campus. We started studying on campus and watch the sunset by Century Tower in the Marston Library. There’s also a bat house where around night fall people gather to watch the bats fly out and enter the world.
There’s so many fun extra-curricular that you can join. Don’t just join the ones that are career based (but be sure to join at least one). Objects in Motion. Circle K International. UF Equestrian. Disclaimer: I didn’t actually join all of these clubs but I did attend many of their meetings and events. There’s also a lot of cultural clubs. African Student Union. Asian American Student Union. Cuban America Student Association.
Now, even after I’m done, I still live in Gainesville. I like the small town feel and how at home I feel.
I remember the night being
extremely cold. Seth, Sarah, and I were hanging out like any usual night. We were walking around campus when we happen upon people hanging out flyers. The flyers were for a bonfire fundraising event for the church. Being the adventurers we are, we said what the hay.
Not anticipating the drive was going to be around a half an hour, Seth fell asleep. When we got closer, Seth woke up right as the GPS told us to go off road down a dirt road. We look at each other, suspiciously. Wondering if we should keep going. We did. There were no street lights. No porch lights. It was all head lights.
Further and further we got, we got more anxious and a little thrilled. The GPS decided to lose signal sometime down the unforeseen path. This is where most people should turn around in horror movies, but we kept on going. Finally, we saw a bunch of parked cars in the middle of a random field.
We finally made it. There was a gigantic bonfire on the other side of the field. Bumped into plenty of people we knew. Got to go on a creepy, dark hay ride into another field. Ate tons of food. Donated to the church. Made s’mores.
All in all, it was a good night.
School spirit. It’s everywhere. Especially, football games. In specific, college football games. People come from all over to enjoy Saturdays together. Whether watching it at home or at the stadiums themselves. For example, this past Saturday, the Gators started off
kind of rocky. But no matter what the fans cheered. Whether they win or lose the fans will always be there to support the players. I love that about the games. I’m not a big sports fan myself, but being there. Surrounded by the vibe. It pulls you in. The love of the game. The players. The orange and blue. Each other. No matter what their race, their religion, their beliefs. They come together every Saturday to support their teams. That’s what I love about football Saturday.
Come join me at the games,
You know the random stands in the mall with people hassling you to try this and smell that? Well while my friend, T, and I were at the mall, one of those sales personnel came up and handed out flyers. I always try to take a flyer or sample whenever someone is handing them out because I have been there in their shoes before. This particular sale rep was slick. I was pretty impress.
As T and I were walking past his booth, he handed me a flyer that said 50% off of their product. I took it and kept on walking. As I was walking away, he states, “Oh, I forgot to put my name on it.” My reaction was to turn around and hand him back the flyer. Then, he starts talking to me and tells me his name. He asked me if I ever heard of his product and I said no. He starts walking over to his product and it finally clicked. That was how he was pulling them in. I applauded him right then and there. If I could, I would have hired him there on the spot.
In the end, I weaseled my way out to of sampling the product. Point Is: Antonio, you are amazing.
You made my day,