Vi’s View: 104 Days of Summer Vacation

Viyang Hao
Viyang Hao, the first dedicated student writer for Stony Brook Matters. Catch her experiences each month in Vi’s View.

I’ve completed my first year of college. I can’t believe I’m actually saying those words out loud. But now comes the problem of summer break.

Summer break will be different this year. I’m so used to being swamped with schoolwork all year round, but for once, I’m not. I’ve said in the past that getting back into hobbies killed time, but that was for something short-term. Maybe I’ll invest my summer into learning how to crochet, which could be more long-term, since it’s something I’ve wanted to get into, but haven’t found the time for.

An alpaca wears a birthday hat at a petting zoo.
An alpaca wears a birthday hat at a petting zoo.

Looking back at my freshman year, it seems like only yesterday that I was ‘fresh meat’ on campus and in New York. I can’t believe how much my life has changed in just eight months. When I first moved into my dorm, I was homesick. I watched my friends casually go back to their homes in New York City, while I desperately tried to make Long Island my new home. Fast forward to the end of the school year, I’m hugging my friends a little tighter than before, and I’m sad to part ways with my home away from home, my freshman dorm.

In one of the last heats of Roth Regatta, students try to not capsize.
In one of the last heats of Roth Regatta, students try to not capsize.

Even events like Roth Regatta seemed foreign to me back then. Like, why would you want to row in a flimsy cardboard boat across the murky waters of Roth Pond? But, after watching the 24 heats, I now understand why it’s a beloved tradition on campus. It’s one of those things you need to see in person to truly enjoy its beauty.

It’s events like Roth Regatta and going on midnight 7-Eleven runs that brought my friends and I closer. It’s strange to see them go back to their ‘normal lives,’ since it’ll no longer be convenient for me to grab food with them late at night. But, I believe our freshmen year journey has changed us for the better.

As I try to figure out what to do for the next 104 days with my time, I’m curious to see what my friends will do during their summer break. It’ll be fun to catch up in August as sophomores. I just hope whatever we all do this summer, we at least step outside of our homes and enjoy the simmering summer heat with some cold ice cream.

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