Superheroes, Rain, and Family: My Perspective on the President’s Picnic

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By Sara Torabi, Humanities-Prelaw ’14

Call me a kid, but I still get excited when I see people dressed up as superheroes. You can understand my excitement as I waited in line for the President’s Picnic, which happened to be superhero-themed this year. Little kids were running around, families were taking pictures, music was in the air, the smell of food was intoxicating, and the weather was…well hot. I sympathized for the people walking around in costumes, it must have been like an oven in those costumes. I listened to the band as I walked over to the Humanities and Communication booth. Kids of all ages were working on crafts of different sorts. This was where I would be working for the day. I sat down and started to make a sample craft when I heard a squeak. “Can I sit next to you?” I looked across the table and saw a pair of blue eyes staring back at me. I nodded smiling at the pretty girl that ran to the other side of the table. She plopped down on the seat grabbed a doll, I handed her some markers and helped her make her doll. I glanced around and noticed everyone talking and playing with the kids. I couldn’t help but smile. This was what I loved about my department. Everyone welcomed you with open arms, there was laughter and smiles on everyone’s faces. You always feel like you are a special part of the department. There was a really positive atmosphere when it came to the Humanities department.

“Do you want to make a wish for the wishing wall?” I asked as I turned back to the little girl. She nodded her head. “How do you write: I wish I was a grown up?” she asked me. As I helped her spell out the words, I listened to the different conversations that were going on from “…we offer Spanish, French, Russian, Italian…” and “we actually have a study abroad program with the Netherlands.” People were laughing; Kate was taking pictures; the children were making necklaces, dragons, and dolls; everyone was really enjoying themselves. I hugged the little girl as she finished her art work and watched as she skipped over to her parents. This cycle continued for an hour or so. The most adorable kids would run up to me asking for help and then proudly stride over to their parents to show them what they had made.

There were people everywhere enjoying the music, eating, and going from booth to booth. It was a perfect day. It was a perfect day, that is, until it started to rain. And I mean pour—you would think we were in the middle of a hurricane. I’m not kidding when I say Florida’s weather is bipolar. One minute hot, the next pouring rain. Personally, I wouldn’t have minded the rain if I wasn’t getting over a cold. I threw on my jacket, but it was no use. I was getting soaked. Everyone around me huddled together trying to stay dry. How sad, I thought to myself, a perfect day just got ruined. But, I was wrong. As I looked out onto the field, kids were splashing in puddles, they laughed as the ran after each other, and danced around. The rain hadn’t dampened their spirits. They were still enjoying themselves. The rain had however started to dampen our artwork. Quickly we put everything in boxes, and we sat down and began to chat. Seeing these kids running around and enjoying themselves really gave us another perspective of the situation. It was just rain, nothing else.

It was the end of the picnic however. As we packed everything into the car I looked at my fellow classmates, professors, and friends. The rain had ended our event, what the rain hadn’t ended however, was our spirit and joy. I waved at my friends as I ran to my car. This day had taught me that we had become a family, a group of people that had bonded and would be there for each other and nothing would change that.

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