As I'm sure that, for once, all of my readers know, Monday night was what some might call the end of a dream for Notre Dame football. In the national championship game that ND's current undergrads have been hopefully and fitfully awaiting for, quite literally, our entire lives, the Fighting Irish lost - and lost big - to Alabama. Around various Miami hotels, airports throughout the country, and probably still gamewatch-decorated living rooms this morning, there are undoubtedly quite a few sad, disappointed, and unhappy Notre Dame fans.
This morning, though, as we listen to dozens of newscasts about how pretty AJ McCarron's girlfriend is* and how many off-the-wall statistics Bama created with their win, most Notre Dame fans know that we are a blessed, blessed group of people. Win or lose in the title game, ND's performance this season was unbelievable. We had an undefeated regular season - something even the mighty Alabama could not do - and we rose from a place as an unranked preseason team to the prestige of being the #1 team in the country. As a student body, we rushed the field, we ran through Stonehenge time and time again, and we watched our team return to glory for the first time in a generation.
(*: In case you haven't seen said newscasts, she's really stinkin' pretty, okay? [Although, hey, so is AJ McCarron. Sorry I'm not sorry.] But she also had about 5 seconds of delay on her reactions for every single play. And she's from Alabama. So I'm gonna just assume she's illiterate.)
And in the case of much of the student body, we travelled en masse to Miami, Florida, for an unforgettable weekend with what often seemed like every last one of our friends. I will not remember the past five days as the weekend when I wasted a bunch of money to go watch my team lose the national championship. I will remember it for what it was: incredible. I will remember this weekend for the reunions it brought with friends I thought I would not see for a year. I will remember it as the time that Miami's South Beach turned into a warmer, sandier replica of South Quad for all the classmates and friends scattered across it. I will remember it for the time I spent singing with friends for an overflowing crowd of thousands at the pre-game mass - a category in which, as Fr. Jenkins so aptly put it, we will always win. I will remember it as the last time I stood arm in arm with my friends singing "Notre Dame Our Mother" in the United States until senior year. I will remember it because the memories made this weekend will be impossible to forget.
Monday night was the end of a season and of an unbelievable dream. Would I have liked to see us take home that crystal trophy instead of, once again, the evil SEC? Of course. But the pain of last night's loss does not make this season or this weekend any less sweet. Monday night was the end of one era, and this morning, for me, is the end of another. After more than 20 years of living in little ol' Indiana, today, I move to London, England, for four months. In the grand scheme of things, that is, of course, not much time, but as I bid farewell to my friends yesterday morning on the curb at Miami International Airport, it sure seemed like an eternity. Just as it is sad to lose, it is sad to leave. The lives of my friends back at Notre Dame will go on even without me in them (cue this, 3:03). Most of my closest friends will be thousands of miles away from me for this semester. For birthdays, holidays, and all sorts of moments big and small, we won't be together - and that sucks. But the end of my current tenure on campus brings with it the dawn of an all new, exciting adventure. I'll be living in London. I'll be studying in Trafalgar Sqaure, acting at the Globe Theatre, traveling Europe on the weekends, and generally living a life that is probably, dear readers, one million times cooler than yours.
As I mentioned last week, this move also brings with it a change in my blogging habits as you currently know them. I have decided that this exceptional semester really calls for a blog of its own. To accommodate this need, I have created The Domerberry's brand-new, exotic sister blog: A Domerberry in King Arthur's Court. This blog will be where I make frequent posts about living in London and, in particular, about my travels. Since I will post on DB International (yup I'm calling it that, get over it) pretty regularly, I will not link every post to Facebook as I do with The Domerberry, so you may want to bookmark it (domerberryinternational.blogspot.com) or sign on as a follower through Gmail, Blogger, or Twitter. The start of DB International, however, does not mean the end of The Domerberry. As you may have noticed, many of my posts on The Domerberry are not so much about what I'm doing but what I am thinking - things largely unconnected to where I live. That said, I will keep writing on The Domerberry this semester to discuss the things I'm thinking. Posts on The Domerberry this semester will be less frequent than usual (I've gotta go to class sometime, people), but when I want to write a post about general opinions - opinions on Twitter usage, or Furbies, or Logansport prom - I will write it here, on DB Domestic. (Yeah okay I'm not calling it that.) So, long story short, check out A Domerberry in King Arthur's Court for my official "study abroad blog," and keep checking out The Domerberry for what it is now, my "personal opinions because I have a lot of those" blog.
So, some eras are ending this week- but incredible new ones are just beginning. If you're still sad about the Irish loss on Monday night, remember: we may have lost, but at least our players don't push each other around like brawling little girls when they're ahead by 28 points. Fighting Irish, I'll see you in September for what's bound to be another awesome season, and readers, I'll talk to you again soon from the other side of the pond.