Last night several of us hung out and had fun, and at one point I had a really good conversation with Caitlin and about the transition of college to real life. Now on Friday I went out with Feng, another new hire who's from Illinois and therefore new to VA, at one point we had a kinda similar conversation. Starting out with the conversation with him, we discussed being in a place you've grown up, and gone to college at, and therefore having a well established network of friends and people you associate yourself with. He posed the question about whether I had ever thought about moving to another state far enough away that the convenience of having friends close by is gone; where you have to pretty much prove to yourself that you can make it on your own, and survive in an unfamiliar setting. Its something I contemplated doing during my job search, and I didn't come across the opportunity to give it much thought since all my offers for jobs were in state. Giving it more thought however, I don't feel as though that I would really have the guts to do things similar to Feng or others I know from UVa who have made that large leap to unfamiliar territory.
This conversation flowed over to last night, when others and I discussed how relationships developed in college have that inherent convenience of being able to go grab a lunch with someone, be library buddies, or even just have the opportunity to just randomly run into one of your friends. When you graduate college, you leave that convenience behind in multiple ways. In one way, the way you interact with friends you developed in college changes; you can no longer just randomly run into them, or go walk five minutes to a house. The relationships from college lose their convenience, and you have to put a constant effort into your daily schedule to try to maintain those relationships. This isn't a bad thing at all, because the moments you have on gchat or via text message/phone call are still completely fun and enjoyable. Furthermore, the instances where you go to visit and see these people you consider best friends whom live hours away are amazing and exciting.
The other way in which this convenience leaves is that meeting new people, finding new friends become SO much harder after college. Thus far, I've made two new friends, and these are people I have met through work. Don't even ask me how your supposed to meet new people in the "real world," other than making a ridiculous interview tape for MTV to get on a show that in no way resembles the real world. Its an adjustment to something that many of us have been used to for 4 years, and is something that there's sadly no easy little handbook that has a 5 step program of how to adjust to a new lifestyle.