Leaving by Airplanes on Trips Long and Short

T-minus two weeks until school. My house is an interesting place at the moment, strewn with belongings and suitcases, none of them mine. On Tuesday, both my newly graduated brother and myself will be taking trips. I, of course, am heading to New Orleans for 4 days for a quick visit before school. Kevin, however, is taking a giant, post-grad LEAP and moving to Italy for 14 months. Wait, what?? I know. You’re like, am I supposed to be sorry or something? THAT SOUNDS AMAZING!

So I’m just packing a duffel bag with clothes I hope will withstand the late August New Orleans heat, and this isn’t really about me. Sure, I’m getting a ride to the airport that day, too, but you have got to wonder what my parents are going to be feeling at the end of that day. Empty? Sad? Relieved? Hopefully they will be feeling at least a little bit satisfied, because tomorrow, the day before the day when everyone leaves, my mother is closing on the lake house of her dreams, and we all will be able to be there for the big moment when she signs the paper and all of her dreams come true (or at least the ones that exist in this realm of possibility).

Anyways: in my continuing and growing interest (obsessive fear?) regarding “the real world” and having a future after graduation, I will discuss the miraculous adventure my older brother will be setting off on come Tuesday. Kevin graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in May. He spent most of his time there studying theater (acting, directing, sound designing) and it is truly his passion. (Here you may see a family trend of theatrical interest, however, mine stays strictly in the extracurricular field while his became his main focus). His junior year, he went abroad to Arezzo, Italy to study Comedia Dell Arte. I would link to the program, because it’s really spectacular, but their website has recently been hacked. Instead, I will provide a silly photo of my brother while at said program. update: the site is back up. Check it out HERE.

Perhaps it had something to do with character work??

Fast forward to this spring, leading up to graduation, Kevin, like so many others in the class of 2010, didn’t have a clear idea of what his life would be after graduation, other than working (with ME!) for the summer at Creative Arts summer camp. So then, like, by some networking MIRACLE, in a WHIRLWIND, all of the sudden he got a job offer to return as an administrative assistant/director/general dude to help out AND HE GETS PAID, AND HE GETS TO LIVE IN ITALY. Needless to say, my parents are totally thrilled and Kevin, also, seems pleased. These days it seems like you’re incredibly lucky to find a paying gig, to find a job in a field relevant to your experience and your goals, or a job with a definite time period. To find all three of these for your first year out seems kind of like a dream.

So I’m not really sure of what all his responsibilities will be, (in fact I don’t know if he really knows) but this job is an example of using networking skills. Here is how the web of people was completed and the job was found. Try to follow. Graduation day, Sarah Lawrence College, a Saturday in May (and yes, I was there. I missed the last weekend of short term to fly to New York because I love my brother so much). The guy that runs the program in Arezzo has a son in the graduating class (this is convenient and AWESOME coincidence #1). This son happened to be in a production of Shakespeare’s The Tempest that Kevin directed earlier that spring (#2!)  Upon running into his father, my parents were talking about (of course) what’s next for the newly graduated “adults” and my mom made a joke about giving him a job out in Italy. While she laughed, the program director didn’t, and said that Kevin should email him. (coincidence #3/ MIRACLE #1!!) So he did. And talks were had, and they were good!!

I guess what I’m trying to say is a) I’m very proud of my brother for getting a job in an environment that seems very difficult for post grads (especially those in theater) b) I’m thinking to my graduation day two years down the line, and wondering… Will I not have any plans when I walk at graduation? Somehow I think I’m too proactive (read: neurotic) to not have 78 billion back up plans, but it’s a very possible situation. Well if that is the case, then c) I hope I can take it as casually as Kevin did, because it was his ease and positive attitude that led to solving his no-plans situation in a timely and totally awesome way.

Check back next week for photos of me being a faux southern belle!

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About nbrouder
I'm a senior at Bates College getting ready for thesis and the real world!

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