Many are curious about how twenty people with totally different personalities and interests can spend three weeks together in one house. The answer is that we have fun trying new things together. Over time, I've realized that these people have molded me in surprising ways.
In the Adirondacks, I have discovered parts of myself that I would not have discovered anywhere else. Through my relationships with musicians, athletes, scholars, painters and veterans, I try new activities and spend a lot of time talking to people who have different experiences and opinions. At Fenn, people think of me as a jock, but when I'm in the Adirondacks, I play music, make pasta and act in videos. These activities are parts of my favorite memories. I remember one band performance on a hot summer night that got the whole house in motion. The performance room was dimly lit and everyone was packed into the doorway listening to our guitar chords bursting out of black amplifiers. My uncles were stomping and dancing to the beat, and my grandmother and grandfather were clapping to the loud song. The scene was both funny and wild. A quiet activity that absorbs all the generations at different times of the day and night is chess. We have many chess players there, but my favorite competitor is my Grandfather whose strategy is patience. Gampop studies the black and white pieces thoughtfully, using time as a psychological tactic to beat me. Through many matches, he has taught me how to concentrate and remain calm, even when I am tired and ready to burst. His strategy works - over years of playing him, I have only won twice.
At home in Lincoln, I go from school to sports and back to school again. I like my routine, but as I get older, I grow more and more excited to leave my structured schedule and be in a community that gives me time to explore different parts of myself.