Let’s play two truths and a lie. I’ll go first: I skipped a grade in middle school. I’ve flown a plane. I’m an FC Barcelona fan.

Until this morning, there would have been two lies in that mix. I did skip a grade in middle school. But I cheered for Real Madrid when they won the UEFA Champions League this weekend. And this morning, the guy who took me up in his Piper J-3 Cub said, ”Hey, you want to fly this thing solo for a couple minutes?” And what can you say to that except, “Yes, absolutely”?

I’m only one week in and it’s already been an interesting summer. Everyone else is still going to graduation parties and end-of-year celebrations, but I’ve had neither the time—I’m working several days a week now—nor the interest—why drag out the school year any longer than we have to? We’re done. It’s really sinking in now. My diploma is on the shelf, my final transcript has been sent to my college, the only schedule I’m on is the one taped up on the wall in the back room next to the freezer. When people ask me when I’m leaving for school, there’s a definite answer, and it’s only three months away. These things are real and they are happening now.

I guess I don’t want to fall into the trap of living in the past. Maybe some people would say that I’m just forcing myself toward my future, but the truth is that I’ve had my eyes set forward for years now. My flight today, short as it was, made me eligible for a free aviation course and private flying lesson, with a chance to get my license after logging enough hours—just like you would for a driver’s license. Why not make that my next adventure? I’ve always wanted to be able to fly. ♦