Why Does The Summer Have To End?
Updated: Jan 2, 2019
If I had to sum up these past three months into one word, it would be gratitude.
I don't know where to begin in expressing my thanks for this awesome summer. It's rather funny because I really shouldn't have been out California for my summer internship since I needed to be doing research to continue progressing in my thesis work.
Yet, I'm glad things worked out the way they did. I've learned more about myself in these past three months than I have in five years (going on six).
I was thinking a lot about how I would break down this review of my summer, and I decided that going month by month would be the best way to do it.
Let's get into it!
Surprisingly, I had lowered my expectations going into the summer since I didn't want to set myself up for failure.
I quickly got settled into my new apartment and learned where everything was located. I had a Costco literally next door to my apartment complex, a nine-minute drive from my place to where I work, and a fifteen-minute drive to the beach.
Could I have been living in a better spot? Nope. Location, location, location my friends.
I could go on about how dope and convenient my apartment is (and how much I want to live there when I move back to California), but there's more to this story than where I just lived.
I came to California to kick-ass in my internship, and kick-ass I did. The first month of the internship was relatively straightforward. I got to meet the new team that I would be supporting throughout these summer months, get acquainted with my manager and other higher-ups in my organization, and meet the other interns at my site and throughout Southern California.
Outside of work, I started working out a little bit (but unfortunately, didn't keep it up throughout the summer, which is disappointing). Writing for Forbes went incredibly well also. Instead of writing just once a month, I was able to scale up my writing to publishing seven times a month. I really had to push myself to get that done, but I did.
All in all, June was about getting settled into to my new life in California, and everything went pretty smoothly.
Not too much happened in this month. By the time July arrived, I'd gotten settled into life in Huntington Beach. Work was progressing smoothly at Boeing, and the writing on Forbes continued to go well. I got more comfortable driving long distances and was making trips to LA semi-frequently to visit friends from college and new people I met earlier in June.
Unfortunately, I ran into car trouble around the middle of the month. I was on my way to get a haircut before a date when I saw the tire pressure light come on in my rental car. I had to spend a good chunk of time getting the car replaced by my rental company, Avis. Fortunately, I was able to get the vehicle swapped out in time before the date, and don't worry, I made it on time, and things still went well.
One thing I was somewhat concerned with this month was hanging out with the other interns. Other than going to official intern events in June, I didn't hang out with them as much as I wanted to outside of work. I made a conscious effort to do so, and I ended up going surfing for the first time ever. It was a lot of fun and definitely a workout in of itself. Can't wait to try again when I eventually make it back to California.
With my time winding down in Huntington Beach at this point, I started becoming worried about making the most of the moments that I have while I'm still here.
August. My birth month. Knowing that the last month of the summer here made me sad, but gave me the motivation to make the most of it. My internship had steadily ramped up concerning the workload, so I didn't have much time outside of work on the weekdays to write like I usually would. I knew that I had to give my engineering job 100% so I could put myself in the best position to come back to California. With my internship taking up a lot of my time, my writing started to take a backseat. It's weird because I started off August strong with getting the interviews done for my seven posts for the month.
Unfortunately, I was so busy with traveling that I dropped the ball - I was only able to publish once this month.
Yet, I'm happy that I was running around the Golden State in my last month. I started off the first weekend celebrating my birthday in LA, going from Griffith Observatory to Rodeo Drive. The next day, I was driving everywhere from DTLA for lunch to the Palisades for dinner with family friends. I had a lot of fun running around the city, but my time there made me realize that I don't want to live in or near Los Angeles anytime soon.
It's strange, because initially before moving, I was in love with the idea of living in LA. I, like other dreamers, had visions of living "the life" out there. Rent out a luxury apartment (on a credit card). Drive a nice foreign car (probably leased haha). Go out all the time (when you know you can't afford to). And post it all on social media, so everyone knows you're living that life (if you did something or went somewhere awesome, and it's not on the 'gram, did it really happen tho?).
But visiting the city in person brought reality home for me. I'm not interested in living in the city anymore. I would prefer to live in locations relatively close to LA like Santa Monica or the Pacific Palisades (if I ever earned big money like that lol).
Otherwise, I'm okay with a 30-45 minute commute from Huntington Beach to LA to visit and hang out with friends here. Visiting LA made me realize how good I have it in Huntington Beach!
For the second weekend in August, I was in San Diego visiting family. It was an hour and thirty-minute drive from Huntington Beach, which really wasn't all too bad. I had a great time exploring the city with my aunt and cousin, roaming around the downtown, and exploring La Jolla (see pic on the left) and Mount Soledad. I got some great pictures of the coastline (and myself haha). I didn't remember San Diego being that large the last time I visited.
If I ever have a family and I still want to live in California, I'm moving there!
The last free weekend I had in California was spent in San Francisco. LinkedIn had reached out to all the Campus Editors to host us in their SF office. I booked my flight like a week before (sad I know) and flew out that Friday. I got to meet several other Campus Editors from schools like UC Berkeley, USC, University of Washington, and other institutions. It was awesome to be in the same room in real life, as opposed to chatting with each other online. We also got to meet with the News and Video teams about their new initiatives and products they are developing.
I was surprised at how candid they were during our discussions and their openness to feedback. Overall, I was impressed with the meeting and sincerely appreciate them hosting us.
After the meeting, I hung out with the other Campus Editors for the rest of the day, grabbing lunch together and going to a panel that some of them hosted and spoke about LinkedIn to a full audience. It was a great time.
The only unfortunate thing during the visit was that our AirBnB was in Sunnyvale, while we were in SF (it's a long story, don't ask). So the Uber's to and from were expensive. The next day, I hung out at Dolores Park with a friend from MIT and ended up seeing Crazy Rich Asians with him, another Campus Editor, and her friends from college. It was a fantastic movie, and I couldn't have seen it with better people.
The next day, I flew back to Long Beach from San Francisco and ubered back to my apartment. I spent the following week wrapping up my internship early so I could take my remaining days as vacation.
I did nothing those days. (I slightly regret that since I could have used that time to publish the stories I was supposed to this month, but it's ok, I've learned my lesson.)
When it came time to move out, I was sad. Apparently, because I was leaving, but to be more specific, I'm having to disrupt a lifestyle that I really feel in love with.
I flew back to Boston, moved my stuff back into my dorm the next day, then flew out again to be back home for the last week of summer.
And now, I'm at the airport, ready to fly back to Boston to finish up my degree.
And that's my summer in a nutshell. If I were to cover everything in depth, this post would be way too long.
So now that we've talked about the past, it's time to give the future a mention. What have I learned from this past summer, and how will that influence me going forward?
I'm more than just an engineer. I'm more than just a writer too. If this summer has shown me one thing, it's that there's a lot of hidden potential in combining my technical skills with my creative muscles.
I'm convinced that I'm on the right path for my life, and it's a calm, steadying feeling to have.
Driving all over California was actually pretty fun. I really enjoy traveling on my own. Of course, traveling with friends and/or a significant other would be great too, but I'm happy to solo travel. Turns out, I'm plenty of company.
I guess the main point here is that I really liked my independence this summer. This was my first time living on my own, and things turned out pretty well.
I dated a lot this summer. Mostly went well. Learned a lot about myself in the process.
I know what I'm looking for in a life partner, and I can't wait to meet her.
I love Huntington Beach. It's the perfect place for me to start over not just regarding a physical location. Tt's not too far from LA or San Diego, and there are airports to fly out to San Francisco, Seattle, and other major cities.
I can't wait to be back there enter the real world. It's the perfect spot for me.
I made new friends outside of college and kept in touch with old ones too. It's not that it's hard to make new friends, but it takes a lot of effort and having an open heart.
I'm so glad that I took that risk, and I can wait to reunite with these people in due time.
But this summer, I found the courage to chase after my dreams.
And that's all that matters.
Thank you for reading, and I'll see you in Boston soon.