It is the final day of 2013, and I thought it would be appropriate to reflect on the top moments of the year for me personally. It was very difficult to narrow it down to just ten, and even harder to rank them, but I believe the following highlights provide a pretty good summary of my experiences in 2013.
10. The Blog
I began this blog on January 11th because I needed another hobby to keep me busy, and I realized that I actually enjoy writing about things that interest me. It has certainly been a roller coaster ride throughout the year. There have been many positives that have come from the blog and I am always encouraged when people say that they read it, even if it’s just one article. I also want to emphasize that my goal is present my beliefs and opinions. I will never be upset if you disagree with me as long as you do it in a mature manner. I’m looking forward to another great year of blogging.
9. Cliff Jumping
This summer I went with my good friends from Bryant Steve and Tyler all the way out to Western Massachusetts to cliff jump at Becket Quarry. It was beautiful day to do it, and was definitely worth the long drive. The cliffs ranged from 20 feet to 80 feet, and there was a rope swing as well. I did the 20 foot jump and rope swing, while Steve and Tyler eventually did the 40 foot jump after a long preparation (trying not to pee in their pants). It was definitely an exciting highlight of my summer.
8. Newport Chowder Fest
My dad and I went down to Newport for the annual Chowder Fest in June. It was our second consecutive year attending, and it did not disappoint. There were over 20 different kinds of chowder to sample from, along with many other food options and entertainment. As a huge fan of chowder, I look forward to this festival every year.
7. My 21st Birthday
On January 3rd, I turned 21 years old. This opened the door for many opportunities that I did not previously have. Being able to legally drink and buy alcohol allowed me to go the bar, take a tour of the Sam Adams factory, and enjoy happy hours with my coworkers during my internship. I also received my iPhone 5 as a birthday present, which has infinitely improved my life over my old track phone.
6. Bryant plays at Madison Square Garden
A few weeks ago my family and I took a vacation in New York, and the highlight of the trip was seeing the Bryant basketball team play at Madison Square Garden as part of the Black Rock Gotham Classic. We had great seats and it was an exciting game. Unfortunately the Bulldogs lost by one point in overtime, but I loved watching them play in one of the world’s most famous arenas.
5. Patriots vs. Bills
The season opening game for the New England Patriots was at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Buffalo, New York. My brother and I (Patriots fans) along with two of our friends (Bills fans) made the weekend trip up to Buffalo to see the Patriots take on the Bills. It was a beautiful day for football, and we tailgated before the game. The game was very intense, and ultimately decided by a Patriots game-winning field goal in the final seconds. It was certainly a fun weekend all around.
4. Passing Exam P
This was the first of three crucial moments in my career that happened this past year. As an actuary, you are required to pass several extremely rigorous exams. Exam P was the first of those exams, and after failing miserably the previous September, I was able to rebound and conquer it on my second attempt in March. This was critical not only because one exam is typically required for a starting full-time position, but also because it gave me the confidence that I could successfully pass actuarial exams.
3. The Internship
I had a great experience during the summer in general, but my opportunity to intern at Blue Cross Blue Shield was an important and enjoyable experience for me. I had the opportunity to work on two different projects, spend a day in the Boston Common, go to Georges Island, learn several valuable skills, and meet many new people. It would also be a critical part of my resume when applying for full-time positions in the fall.
2. The Job Offer
Hard work pays off. I am very fortunate to be in the position that I am in right now. With help from my parents, coworkers, and especially the Amica Career Center at Bryant, I was able to have the luxury of deciding between three full-time job offers. All were very good offers and exactly what I was looking for, but in the end I made the choice to return to Blue Cross Blue Shield where I will be working full-time in June.
1. Red Sox World Series Champions
It was difficult to choose the top moment of this year, but it didn’t take too long to realize that the Boston Red Sox winning the 2013 World Series Championship had to be the number one highlight of 2013. All throughout the season this team played their hearts out for a city that had been devastated in April. It all came together for the new manager and the players, the veterans and the newcomers, and the pitching staff and the bullpen. The Red Sox were able to redeem themselves from a disastrous 13 month stretch and bring home one of Boston’s most satisfying championships of all time. I have never been more proud to call Boston Strong my home.
2013 was certainly one of the most action packed years of my lifetime. This is not surprising considering the point of my life that I am currently in. That being said, I fully anticipate that 2014 will be just as exciting, if not more, and look forward to the excitement and challenges that it brings.
Thanks to everyone who read this post. Please like the post if you enjoyed reading, comment if you have feedback, and share with others.