Commencement 2012

It was Commencement weekend in DC. And I’ll admit, walking to Georgetown for my Sunday breakfast at Dean & Deluca, seeing graduating seniors dressed up, some carrying their cap and gown and others wearing them open over their clothes, made me a little nostalgic.

Graduation was a lot of fun. Even if the night was incredibly long. I was leaving the next day, driving back to Texas for the fourth and last time (I drove to university each year). So my I was up all night, alternating between the various parties to say farewell to my friends, wishing them all the best, and then coming back the apartment to finish packing up my car. I have to admit my one regret is falling asleep on the drive leaving California. As soon as I picked up my mother from her hotel, I gave her the keys and let the sleep deprivation from finals week and graduation night take over.

The other great thing I remember was showing family around Los Angeles. I loved having them in town to show them the area I’d called home for the previous four years. After the ceremony, I took my dad and family on the drive to Little Tokyo where we had a delicious sashimi lunch at one of my favorite restaurants. I tend to have a lot of celebratory dinners of sashimi with my father. Mmm…and I do miss Little Tokyo. Oishi desu.

It’s been a little under 10 years since my college graduation. Have the years in between then and now been what I imagined? Not really, but I didn’t necessarily have a 10-year plan, to be honest. Other than continue writing, of course. But I wanted to move to DC (and did), and work with something international (and did). Moving out here has given me a lot of opportunities I’m thankful for, and I’ve met a lot of wonderful people. I’ve also been a little politically star struck too.

And California definitely holds a soft spot in my heart. From its snow-capped mountains, to the funky coffeehouse in Riverside holding poetry readings, to my beautiful, Spanish style university and the awesome people I met there. Then there are the weekend trips to the Getty, the Huntington Gardens and back down to Laguna Beach.

So if I were to offer any advice to the Class of 2012, it would be to enjoy the ride. I know it’s cliche, but life’s a journey. Sometimes the plans don’t work out, but it’s not always a bad thing. Just enjoy it and see what happens. And of course: Congratulations!


Patricia returned to Texas after spending several years on both coasts. She's a writer, amateur photographer and traveler.

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