It is commonly said that a community or a society would be nothing without its people. People constitute a vitality which oozes out into the surrounding environment. But not all the spirit can be lost as even in abandoned areas (like the wind-howled streets commonly portrayed on movies to real places like parts of Fukushima Prefecture) as relics can still be seen in the form of buildings, landscape design, roads, bridges, signs, technological bells and whistles of various sorts, and more. It almost felt like starting over again since the majority of the people on my floor and even this particular three-week session had most of the participants leave campus with all their packed belongings and hopefully memories. Being behind and checking room by room on the floor on who is and isn't still there was close to bringing me into visible remorse but it didn't for some reason. It could be that of the slight amount of anticipation and happiness I have for returning to my native habitat to that of acceptance and future hope in which what I have had will help me give back to those in my community as well as using this experience for a variety of possibilities that just seem so vast to fathom, especially at this time.
I honestly have to admit that I went to bed pretty late last night and that it was quite an uphill battle to finish my presentations and homework as well as some planning for the rest of the summer as well as trying to socialize for the last time on my floor. It was heartbreaking to know that attending class will lead me to probably never see many of the friends I have again. Earlier in the program, many people took immense liberty to do whatever they want to each other, even if it got to a more intimate level since many students figured that they would never see this again. Although I am totally in favour with individual liberties and choices, I do not see many students, especially with that frame of mind, who tend to truly reflect and ponder about their actions as it is seen as actions which don't matter. I really hate to make this comparison, but that of a "What happens at Vegas, stays at Vegas," type of attitude.
I will be sure to give a recap and a reflection on my final full day on this scholarship. Waking up earlier lead me to take a walk to the VDub to have some breakfast (which I honestly only had very few times due to my afternoon class schedule). I unfortunately couldn't really finish all the work before I went to bed at stupendously late time but that night was well worth going to bed very late for. Our RA and many of the other students just chilled, talked, and watched movies and played PC games like Siv for all night long until sunrise. There were still some enthusiasts who played until the end of early morning! I personally didn't last that long and I regretted not finishing as it may have impacted how much I could squeeze in terms of doung and experiencing before heading to PVD. I frantically worried about the homework after being stuck on certain problems, leading me to turn to my presentation cooperator, Katherine. She was kind enough to help me with some of the problems despite my flustered nature of making sure I can do and meet the expectations of what I want to do while still packing her paraphernalia (making fun of my Singaporean friend, Adarsh for saying it. Actually, we had a pretty interesting discussion on the definition and the application of 'paraphernalia' in different countries) simultaneously. I then on proceeded to take one final group photo with the floor as well as many other photos with friends later on in the day.
In macroeconomics, we turned in our very final problem set and received the answer set with no usual, beloved explanation from our TA who is supposedly captivating to many students in the class because of his charisma and his appearance. (just a hypothesis on valiant observation) The presentations surprisingly lasted until 3:20 to 3:30 where I admitted to adding 15 extra minutes when I should have spoken for five minutes. Hey, talking about the Laffer Curve and income and corporation tax policy formulation, differences, its emergence, problems, solutions, as well as an interactive activity on a website (which didn't go as smoothly as I hoped) required that time. It was awesome to hear my conservative friend do a monologue on Obamacare to groups presenting presentations from peak oil output to sub-prime mortgages. There was humour, deliberation, perseverance, intellect, interest, anxiety, lethargy, relief, inquiry, and explanatory analysis. Peoples' traits showed that all students have showed a very positive contribution which is mainly intrinsic to who they are whether that be apparent to non-apparent to a bit of an extra umph that students acquire through understanding and collaborating with others. I know I have to make the economics course at school closer to how awesome and educational the course I took was here, even if it was mostly-lecture based. Talking and greeting others farewell proved a closing and yet a new beginning. Since I can see the interwoven nature between the two where it isn't exactly as abrupt or as separated as many people think it that transition moment(s), I was surprised on how I moved on and smiled toward that contemplation. Talking and debating with others, getting contact info, and doing some more strolling and exploring was incredible and to be a great way to end my last day in New England.
Onwards to the VDub again and to hugging the last people on my floor and then to Downtown Providence. I saw a great see-thru painting through a blank side versus a very different painting on the more bold and colourful side from an enthusiastic man in front of the Providence Performing Arts Center. Unfortunately, he asked me for some money and I didn't really have much but just having that experience makes me guilty in a way I can't thank or show more of my genuine appreciation as that fast-paced moment. It wasn't out of pity, but just timing and rushing. Going around the rest of Providence with the cohort besides Jack and Jing's roommate was an absolutely fine way to end such a great trip or stay here - by fully soaking in the sights and the ambiance of Providence as well as Thayer to getting great tea at a local tea shop with reasonable prices for high-quality products to a nice juicy burger and refreshing milkshake from Johnny Rockets to a nice stroll on campus was nice. Plus meeting and saying goodbye to people on the Mean Green (huge group!) Well, I still gotta pack so stay tuned for edits and updates to previous blogs and stronger future blogs when I have a chance to reflect and understand!