2018 marks a year brimming with milestones: from the flat-earth conspiracy theorist ‘Mad’ Mike Hughes launching his home made rocket only to discover that the earth is in fact round, to the mildly atrocious ‘Frozen’ making its debut as a musical on Broadway, the year has been one filled with monumental achievements, questionable directorial choices (yes-still referring to ‘Frozen’), magical beginnings and bittersweet endings. In fact, to quote the profound words of the new age, contemporary, philosophising prodigy of our generation, the esteemed Kylie Kristen Jenner, this year has truly been one of ‘just realising stuff’.
Aside from our good friend Mike Hughes finally realising that the earth is not a giant disc, we too have realised many things both about ourselves and life in general, during what is indeed our final year of school. When approached by any well-meaning individual questioning us about what year level we are in, it isn’t uncommon that we are immediately met with widened eyes and an unwarranted but sympathetic pat on the back as we alert them to the tragic reality that yes, we are in year 12. While the year is often painted to be some sort of sadistic villain that laughs manically at the misfortunes of others, this year has definitely shaped up to be electrifyingly mind-blowing in the most positive way.
Throughout our journey here at Fintona, we have constantly been encouraged to brave new waters and discover unique passions with a plethora of opportunities being offered to every girl in an environment that nurtures and supports our burgeoning aspirations. It is with this kind of guidance and camaraderie that Fintona girls have been able to become avid debaters, eloquent public-speakers, flourishing sportswomen, blossoming thespians and most importantly, well-rounded global thinkers.
From the Night of the Notables back in year 7, where we were given the opportunity to embrace our inner gods and goddesses - which we are sure we will be forever grateful for - , to conquering 50km hikes in 4 days on camp, embarking upon exchanges to France and Japan, performing with moustaches and funky costumes in the annual school play, and taking on crazy yet thrilling experiences in Peru on world challenge – where sunburnt eyes were not uncommon - Fintona truly has given us irreplaceable opportunities which have all helped us to grow and become the strong, resilient and independent young women we now are.
In recognising the incredible feats of every student, we simply cannot leave without acknowledging the tireless efforts of the staff at Fintona. Despite us presumably administering you with hair-loss inducing amounts of stress, you have graciously supported us throughout the years with such wisdom and guidance that can only ever be rivalled by the wise and worldly wizard Professor Albus Dumbledore. Not only have you shown great care in ensuring that every girl reaches their academic potential, but you have consistently demonstrated your genuine concern with the well-being of each and every student.
It is truly rare to form relationships with your teachers, that warrant tears out of happiness when we hear they’re getting married – thank you Mr.Stringer, I think it’s safe to say, that definitely made our day. Or amazing advice on boys – thank you Sensei, we really did need it. This personable approach to teaching us, has been extraordinary. And we are truly honoured that so many of you have considered retiring at the end of this year, because you will miss us too much. But in all honesty, we are the ones that are going to miss you the most. The amount of effort and involvement that you have devoted to us, is essentially unfathomable, and although we don’t say it nearly as much as we should, thank you.
We have been fortunate enough to pass this somewhat brutal year with the some of the best people we know. So, to our glorious year level, amidst the odd breakdown here and there, we’ve shared incredible moments of joy, exhilaration, and passionate debate over the seating arrangements of formal tables. But in all honesty, from the bottom of our semi-sleep deprived hearts, the memories we have created over the years are a testament to the closeness we have attained as a cohort- from dancing on tables, to performing impressively random flash mobs in front of the entire school. Just like the finest, most exquisite cheeses that smell faintly of old socks, we’ve matured with age and formed some of the strongest friendships which we will undoubtedly cherish forever.
People always say that year 12 can either be the best or worst year of your school life, depending on how you deal with the undoubtable stress, and the subjects you’re doing. However, having now gone through this mountain of a year, and thankfully coming out the other side, I think we have all discovered that it is not your subjects nor your studying strategies that make or break year 12, it is the people that surround you. So, again, to the 38 people sitting behind us, thank you for all your support, not only to us, but to each other. We can’t quite put into words how incredible this year has been thanks to each and everyone one of you. And to quote many teachers from throughout the year, you are indeed “the best group of girls”.
While the both of us in our role of school consul, have unfortunately not yet donned obscenely thick sideburns, the quintessential bowl-cut, majestically flowing capes or funky helmets, of the original Roman consuls, we have enjoyed every moment of the position. We are honoured to have been given the incredible opportunity to work with the entire school, comprising of such an immensely talented, astute and amicable group of girls.
Aside from arousing laughter (regardless of whether it is genuine or merely an act of pity) in our Real Newz™ assemblies, we have both learnt a myriad of valuable skills that have shaped the people we have become today, and we hope that we’ve brightened each day, with fun and a whole lot of laughter, even by simply wildly mispronouncing words or names in the bulletin.
As we, the class of 2018 take our last steps at Fintona, we take our first steps in the unknown world beyond, embarking on a journey that can take us anywhere. We do know however, that no matter where we end up, we’ll never forget the adventures we’ve shared.
All the tears, all the laughs, all the smiles, and all the love, will always be memories we cherish dearly. But as all good things must come to an end, we now draw the curtains on our time at Fintona and so, to quote our good friend Andrea Bocelli, it is indeed ‘time to say goodbye’.
Gayatri Chaturvedi and Sameena Pavri-Thomas