You’re Already a Piece of the Exeter Puzzle

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Hey Guys!

Its been a wicked crazy summer for me so far, what with organizing college applications and working at an internship in NYC. But now that August has rolled around, my mind turns again to the leaf-littered paths of Exeter. I can’t tell you how excited I am to get to school and start the upcoming year.  You all should be excited too!

I remember how nervous I was in the months leading up to my first move-in day.  Would the kids like me?  Would I miss home?  Would I wake up on time?  How do I button a shirt again…? I imagined all sorts of things that could go wrong and complicate the beginning of my Exeter career.

Once I got to Exeter and saw that EVERYONE in the freshman class was new and worrying about the same things I was, I started to feel more comfortable and enjoy myself. Time sped up and days flowed by me faster and faster as I had more and more fun inside and out of the classroom. Before I knew it, I had found my home away from home in a small town in New Hampshire.

I also want to send a message to all of the new lowers, uppers, and seniors – I promise Exeter has plenty of room in our community for you. Coming into a new school with people who have already known each other for so long is intimidating, but I can assure you that there is nothing to be scared of here. You were admitted just like the rest of us, and you’ll fit right in. Two of my best friends in the world were new students after freshman year and they both love Exeter as much as I do and have lots of friends all over campus.

Finally, I have to give a special shout out to anyone reading this who will be moving into Cilley Hall. I’m not sure if all dorm assignments have come out yet, but I am a proctor on the fourth floor of Cilley, a floor comprised almost entirely of new students. While I encourage everyone and anyone reading this to ask me any questions you may have, I want to extend an extra invitation to any of the students who will be new to Cilley Hall next year to feel free to e-mail me about any questions or concerns you may have about our dorm.

Costa Rica!

hector costa rica groupThis might have been perhaps the most fun summer, with a 10-day trip to Costa Rica from ESSO (Exeter Social Service Organization, our community service program) with 12 fellow Exonians and 2 chaperons, Mr. Hawkins and Ms. McGahie.  Our team will forever be indebted to the University of Georgia at Costa Rica (UGACR) for sponsoring our stay. Upon landing into the country’s capital we were taken to the lush rural community of San Luis de Monteverde at the UGACR campus. 3 days of intense hiking through the forest ensued, with spectacular sights.

We then took on a brief community service project; after the community center experienced normal wear-and-tear, we sanded and varnished all the tables, laid a rock bed foundation for a building, and much more. Here’s a picture of the team digging a waterway for floods, so they don’t destroy the building:
hector costa rica farm

The next part of the trip was devoted to a 3-day homestay, a special, memorable experience for our team. After a day’s drive to a village through Guanacaste, we arrived in a town of 100 people in a place called Quebradas de Nando. I lived with a nice family of 4; Nena, Richard, and their two sons Arley and Andrey. I’ll always be grateful to Andrey, a master marimba player, who taught me how to play in just a few days.

To make their school wheelchair accessible, we created sidewalks and stairsteps around the one room schoolhouse. Here’s a picture of us carving the sidewalk:
hector costa rica sidewalkTo finish off our stay, we threw a giant tamale-making party and invited everyone! Here’s a pic of us with our culinary expertise:
hector costa rica dinnerThe final days of our stay were marked by leisure in paradise at the CIRENAS campus just a short trek (over two rivers and a mile-long beach) away. After surfing lessons and a horseback ride through the jungle, we spent our last days at the beach, enjoying the sunset.
hector costa rica horse

I’ll always remember the absolute paradise of isolation, the beauty away from hotels and cityscapes that make Costa Rica truly unique. It caught us in awe of wildlife and in love for sustainable living, from the simple lifestyles of Quebradas de Nando to the wildlife reserve at UGACR. Thanks to Michaella ’16, Rohan ’16, Sasha ’16, Spencer ’16, Kelvin ’15, Rebecca ’16,Efe ’16 Sacharja ’15, Ashley ’15, Julie ’16, Kelly ’17, our guides Mane and Amelia, our fabulous driver Fabio, and our chaperons Mr. Hawkins and Ms. McGahie for a truly memorable, transformative experience.

Summer Fun

Hey Everybody!

I can’t believe more than one month of summer break is over- it is going by so fast. So far this summer, I have not done much- tennis practice, hanging out with old friends from home, and working around the house. One incredible experience I did get to partake in was a trip to Fiji! From July 1st to July 10th, I traveled the island nation of Fiji with a group of eight other teenagers and two guides (one was from America, another was from Fiji), and I had an incredible time. First we went to the highlands of the main island, where the Fiji water is bottled, and then we went to the Yasawa islands where we swam with Manta Rays, scuba dived, and relaxed on the crystal clear beaches.

Rexs summer 2014 jeep pic

Although exploring Fiji was one of the most memorable times of my life, getting to know the other high schoolers on this trip was possibly even more fun. After the ten days, I feel like I knew my trip buddies for a life time, and I actually met three other kids that go to boarding school.

All in all, this was definitely the high of my summer, and I will never forget it, but it is nice to be back at home.

-Rex

 

Commencement

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One of both the happiest and saddest events of the year: commencement.  Weather permitting, our graduation is held outside on the lawn in front of the Academy building with a luncheon afterwards.  This Sunday, 318 members of the class of 2014 graced the stage to receive their diplomas.  For me and a little under 200 other seniors, those diplomas had been four years in the making!  As you can see, the tradition is to smoke cigars after grad, I can’t say most of us enjoyed them though!

It still seems completely surreal to be the girl in a white dress rather than the underclassman watching from the audience.  I have made such incredible friends here, and I can hardly believe that the first stages of our time together are coming to a close.  With everyone scattering across the globe for summer break and school in the fall, we all took the beautiful sunny day to cherish our last moments together as a whole class.  Only now, a few days out, am I starting to fully realize that the dorms I will be sleeping in Hanover in come September will not be the dorms I have spent so many nights in.  All good things must come to the end, thank you for the lessons and the memories!

Signing out!  Elle

Prom!

kim prom 2
This past Thursday was prom! At Exeter, there is only a senior prom which is held at Castleton in Windham, NH. If you’re an underclassmen, the only way to go to prom is to get asked by a senior. I was lucky enough to be invited by one of my senior friends and I had so much fun! The theme was Gatsby, so there was a band who played some 20’s music. They even did renditions of popular songs like Katy Perry’s “Roar” and put a 20’s spin on it. It was so cool! After people finished eating, they started playing dance music. In addition to the dancing, there was a photo booth. There were different items you could use to dress yourself up, like a boa, fedoras, things like that. After your pictures were taken, two photos strips were printed for you and your friend (or many friends, depending on how many people were in the booth).

If you want to check out some more photos, you can click these links here:

http://media.theexonian.com/13-14/Prom-2014/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/92459938@N03/sets/72157644629023228/

 

 

Springtime

Hey guys – I’m going to keep this short and sweet. Just wanted to give you guys a quick heads up about what’s going on in my life. Take a look at this video if you have the time.

End of Spring Term :)

Hey Guys! It’s been a while since I’ve past posted, and so much has happened since!

This term, I’m taking History 215: The European Century. And as we approach the last few weeks of school (It’s almost summer!!!) there’s the last bit of work to do. I’ve been working hard on our last History Research Paper, one where we have room to explore Europe on the verge of World War I. As you can see, the books are piling!  Hectors laptop and books As I stare out my dorm room window writing my paper, I notice the days getting longer and longer and more beautiful. This past winter was brutal; now we can finally kick back, relax, and enjoy the sun. My friends and I took a little excursion out to the river last weekend; we explored town, ate out (there are many good restaurants within walking distance at Exeter), bought ice cream and strolled along the river’s banks. It was a beautiful night to be outside, a drastic change from the scenery back home in Vegas! At Exeter, your weekends are never boring, as there is always something to do. Hector along the river

I’ll be eternally grateful to Sam ’16 who bought us all coffee and donuts for English class the past week! We had just finished our biggest English essay to date called the Roots paper; in it, you would describe a story passed down in your family from generation to generation and how it has affected you personally. We decided to take an 8:00 AM class easily by bringing in Dunkin Donuts to read all of our essays. Here’s a picture of my English Class with Ms. Desmond.

Hectors DD in class

Lower year had gone by so very fast; it feels as if move-in day was just a few weeks ago. We all look forward to a bright and safe summer. I’ll post next month of Exeter’s ESSO Service trip to Costa Rica, of which I’m so excited for! As this year comes to a close, I can’t hope but reminisce of the memories I’ve made in such a short timespan; you learn to take Exeter day-by-day, enjoy the work you do around the Harkness table, and be amazed at the friends and connections you make along the way. All in all, Not bad at all.