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The Best of 2017

2017 is a strong contender for my least favorite year. Everything that could have gone wrong did. However, even I have to admit that not all of last year was terrible. After a lot of reflecting, I have found a few saving graces. Here are my favorite memories from 2017.

Australian Open 

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For anyone who doesn’t know, I am slightly obsessed with Serena Williams. I’ve been told that it might be a tad bit unhealthy. Needless to say, I was ecstatic when she and Venus both made it to the women’s finals. I spent Friday night rewatching old matches and discussing how the final would go with anyone who would listen, whether or not they really cared. Saturday morning was filled with pre-match commentary and mental preparation. By the time the match was starting, I was already on edge. I refused to be away from my computer, going as far as taking it to breakfast. Like I said, I’m a little obsessed. In just under 90 minutes, Serena won the match and broke the record for most grand slams won in the Open Era. I shamelessly cried as I listened to the speeches. Federer winning the men’s championship the following day was the icing on the cake.

Spring Break 

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Two of my flatmates and I decided to spend our break in Nice. Unfortunately, the trip started off with a missed flight, incorrect orders, and a lost suitcase. Fortunately, things picked up. Our first adventure was a trip to Monaco, where we danced the night away. We then discovered that getting a taxi back to Nice at 4am is basically impossible. After briefly freaking out and calling everyone we knew, the police kindly stole someone’s taxi for us and we made it back to our hotel just before the sun rose. The rest of the trip was less lively but still memorable. We explored Vieille Ville, ate our weight in gelato, and went back to Monaco to see the Prince’s Palace (without getting stranded!!!). Even though things didn’t go according to plan, it was an amazing experience and I’m so glad that we went.

Reunited with Leah 

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After two years of living 3,260 miles apart (but who’s counting), Facetiming daily, and trying to get our calendars to match up, I was FINALLY reunited with my person. We spent the afternoon reminiscing without having to worry about bad internet connection and timezone differences. The few hours that we spent together were easily the best of the year.

Sajo’s Graduation 

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In June, my cousin graduated from high school in what has got to be the longest graduation ceremony known to man. I was ready to give up before we made it to the intermission. Eventually, the teachers ran out of awards to give, diplomas were handed out, and the real fun began. The school treated us to a reception full of performances and fantastic food. Numerous pictures were taken and we were allowed to embarrass Sajo to our heart’s content. We later realized that we had booked our flights for the wrong day, but that’s another story.

Baby Olympia and Serena’s Wedding 

I could honestly make this entire post about Serena, but I’ll take pity on y’all. Serena welcomed her firstborn, Alexis Olympia Ohanian, on September 1st and I was more excited than I should have been. Baby Olympia is the youngest grand slam winner and possibly the cutest child ever. You should all follow her Instagram for heart melting content. A few months after having Olympia, Serena blessed us with a storybook wedding. Although my invitation got lost in the mail, I felt like I was there. I spent weeks showing everyone the pictures and rereading the Vogue article. In a year that left a lot to be desired, Serena made my heart happy and I am extremely grateful.

Raisin

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Raisin is one of St Andrews’ quirky traditions. Third years, or second-year medics, adopt first years and plan family events. In late October, Raisin weekend is held. On Raisin Sunday, the first years spend the morning at their mum’s flat, where they drink and play games. In the afternoon, they are sent on a scavenger hunt before getting some time to relax and prepare for a night of partying with their dad.

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Our Raisin Sunday was Alice in Wonderland themed. The flat was turned into Wonderland and our 11 (!!!) kids were only allowed to refer to us by our character names. We held our very own Mad Hatter’s Tea Party and gave shots in “drink me” vials. Then the children’s knowledge, or lack thereof, of our lives was tested with trivia games. Before long it was time to start the scavenger hunt. My favorite tasks were proposing to a stranger and catching a seagull. Our part of the day ended with a paint fight and games on the beach.

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On Monday, we ditched Wonderland for Noah’s Ark. The kids who had recovered from the previous day’s activities were given partners and transformed into animals. Armed with an “Ark” made by their dad, we headed over to the quad for the foam fight. The weekend was exhausting but definitely worth it.

Christmas 

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Christmas in our house is always hectic. My mother has a tendency to invite everyone she knows over and then panics when she realizes how much planning is needed. Every year, she promises that she won’t do it again and we all laugh. This year was no exception. Because my break started late, most of the decorations hadn’t been put up or were not to my standard. To make up for the lost time, everyone was put to work. We spent Christmas Eve redecorating, buying last minute items, and debating how many people were actually invited.

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Christmas morning was chaotic. In addition to mummy’s normal guests, a few of my cousins flew in from Lusaka. Anyone who has experienced Nairobi traffic knows that true love is waking up at 2am to drive to the airport. After a long trip, we made it back to the house and the madness began. A large amount of time was spent coordinating outfits (we’re that family) and making sure that everything, and everyone, was in the right place. The rest of the day was full of eating, dancing, and arranging photo shoots. Unsurprisingly, we ended up with more people than mummy was expecting and our “lunch” didn’t finish until 11pm.

 

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