My whole journey home took over thirty hours, with long stops in between at the Dubai Airport and Frankfurt Railway Station. Since I couldn’t sleep on the plane and train, I used the five hours in Dubai to doze, though I was too worried about my luggage to actually fall asleep. On the train then, the surrounding passengers were so loud that napping was nearly impossible, though one of the first things my brother and parents, who I called as soon as the plane crew allowed to do so, realized, was that I sounded incredibly exhausted. Such was no surprise, considering the many things I had still accomplished and done in the last week – exams, graduation, the show and farewells. Instead, I alternately read a book, the first one since I had finished the IB, and reveled in memories. During the last few hours of the long train ride, I went through my yearbook. While the many photos of block activities, cultural evenings, project weeks and tutor groups made my loose myself in reminiscence and reflective thoughts, the notes that my friends and peers had left me in the last, blank pages of the yearbook, filled my heart with both warmth and woe.
While reading the entries, the voices of their writers resounded in my ears; I heard their laughter and recalled their embraces. I smiled more and more with every sentence; while a veil of tears that gathered in my eyes now and then sometimes made it difficult to read on. Many of them commended my blog, and photography, which “immortalized our wonderful memories” of LPC. My Secret Valentine thanked me for making her life so much better in February. My Israeli Firstyear commented on me “tagging along to all our awkward Jew holidays […] and being terrified of telling people where I’m from”. One of the football players thanked me for my photographic and general support of the LPC Football Team. A Firstyear from Hong Kong explained how he was enchanted by the fact that I would hug people whenever I saw them, making days brighter no matter what. Many appreciated the way I had taught or helped them with German, congratulated me on my Grad Square Quote (“Well-behaved women seldom make history”) or applauded my “bold idealism”, overall attitude to life and the devotion to my peers. The many, many words of love and friendship, appreciation and inspiration were simply overwhelming and I read the notes over and over again. By the time I could barely see anymore, because my eyes were too wet, I nearly knew them by heart, playing them over and over again in my head.