I’m sitting outside by the pool and thinking back on the final weeks of my sophomore year. There were times when it felt like the summer would never come, but now that I’m home, I realized that those last few weeks flew by. Just a few days after classes were over, our ’10-’11 team met for the final time in preparation for Spring Fling. Everyone dressed up in the most outlandish outfits and headed out to Foss Hill to secure a perfect spot to enjoy the concert. Due to the fact that Spring Fling happens right before the craziness of finals begin, it was our last real chance to simply hangout and relax as a team. We will certainly miss our dynamic group of six graduating seniors. Heff’s delicious team dinners, Bean’s locker-room dance routines, Molly’s sassy Latina attitude, Sena’s soothing vocals, Leah’s crazy spandex, and Ram’s impressive wit are irreplaceable. However, I know I can speak for the team when I say we are excited to welcome the incoming freshmen and anxiously wait next season.
The group of returning players already got a small taste of next year’s expectations when we were put through spring testing. Not only did we have to be at the gym completely warmed up by 7am, (which is a test enough for all of us), we then were tested in front squats, single-leg squats, chin-ups, pushups, and a timed run. The atmosphere during testing was one of intensity, hard work, and some friendly inter-team competition. Each player pushed herself to the limit, showing her dedication to the team, and modeling the training mentality that would then be carried over into our summer training program. As G.I Jodi has told us many times, the stronger we get over the summer, the stronger a team we will be in the fall.
Now that I have returned home from Wes, my daily routine has definitely changed. Thankfully, the culmination of the year and final exams were not unbearably grueling—only one sleepless night, a dozen or so energy drinks (sorry, Jodi), and many impromptu stress-relieving dance-offs. Even though most of us were glad to give our minds a rest, departing from Wes is always bittersweet. Sure, I was glad to tuck away my stack of Spanish Lit stories and binder of Chemistry notes, but I was upset that I had to say goodbye to the people that make Wes a second home for me. However, as English poet John Gay wisely stated, “we only part to meet again.”
So now each day instead of meeting up with some teammates at the gym or at the dining hall, I grab my computer and excitedly open our summer email thread. The team emails are a way for us to keep in touch; we share embarrassing stories about gym mishaps, complain about our unwelcome boredom, and heckle each other about which team we support in the Stanley Cup Playoffs (go Bruins!). The most frequent topic of conversation thus far has been sharing what each of us is doing over the summer. Turns out the fine young ladies of WeWoHo (translation- Wesleyan Women’s Hockey) have some pretty cool summer employment opportunities. One of our rising sophomore defensemen, Jenna Vanderlinden, is working at a home for adults with severe developmental disabilities and volunteering at a local hospital. A fellow blue-liner, Nelle Herrick, is proudly presenting all that Wesleyan University has to offer as she works in the admissions office as a tour-guide. Staying in the neighborhood along with Nelle, Julia Mulhern is living at school doing Earth Science Research for her thesis using the funds she received from a NASA Connecticut Space Grant. Then, at the end of June, she is going to Montana to be a teaching assistant for a six-week geology course run by Indiana University. Kelsey Muller, a speedy forward in the class of 2013, has an exciting few months ahead of her working as a student mentor at the Island School on Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas. In her email she informed us,
“This is the second summer semester that the island school has offered to accommodate the growing interest. At five weeks long, the summer session is an abbreviated version of the fall and spring school year semesters, so it doesn’t cover certain academic classes like math and humanities. It does however focus on sustainable living, marine ecology, environmental research, and local community service. I went there in high school and have the chance to return and work in a variety of different contexts. I will be an advisor, help teach a human ecology class, assist in research, SCUBA classes, various trips, and morning exercise.”
I look forward to learning about what the rest of the team is up to this summer and passing it along to you all. I hope everyone is enjoying the beautiful weather!