By Jackson Hadley. First published in Issue 3 of The Warragul Citizen newspaper - 12 December 2011. Uploaded 23 December 2011.
This is an exciting time of year where so much is going on for people of all ages. For the younger ones Christmas is drawing closer and it is time to start writing letters to Santa, for the older ones it can be stressful and many hate dealing with seeing relatives and buying gifts.
Then there are the inbetweeners. No I don’t mean the television show, I mean the young adults and teenagers. We don’t believe in Santa and most of us don’t believe in having responsibilities, so what do we do this time of year? Thousands of students across the state finished High School forever last month, and many are either attending schoolies or partying every day. December is young people’s party season. With many looking forward to New Year’s Eve and enjoying not having to go to school, looking further into the future than is best saved for 2012.
December, I think, is the time of year for the class of ’11 to work out where they stand in the world. Many of us are going to University next year, many are taking time off and going to Uni in a later year, and even more are working and earning money. I truly hope that everybody who has recently finished school, and everyone else, can find their way. I found that after school was finished it took a lot of getting used to. It wasn’t all fun and games; I found myself feeling lonely having not seen my friends every day as I have been used to for the past thirteen years, and the lack of routine was quietly disconcerting. After that big initial shift we get used to it though; we value our friendships more and want them to last through our lives, no matter how far we travel, and we hope to make more once we leave the nest and explore. Time we do spend with our friends is savoured and planned so that we have the most fun possible.
I truly am grateful for the internet in this adjustment period; when friends are tied up with work or live far away, I can still converse with them all, face-to-face or just textually. I can’t help but wonder what it would be like before the internet, would we simply talk to our friends less or would we make more effort to make memories with them?
I know I am going to make all the memories I can with those people that I like; getting lost in the city, sitting around a campfire and searching op-shops for big fluffy jumpers with your friends are the things you’ll remember years from now. “Remember that day…” kinds of stories. I don’t want to look back on my teenage years and remember a blur of intoxication, I want to be able to have a multitude of real stories, both sweet and humorous, of things I got up to with my chums. I propose you all do the same and take the time away from work to go to your friend’s house with a board game, organise to go to the beach together or simply watch bad television together. The internet is good for keeping in touch, but it can’t sustain a friendship on its own. It may sound corny but sober times spent are good times indeed. You can always get your party on, just make sure you have good friends to party with.
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