My name is not one that is heard very often as some others like “Emily”. Brienne is a name that embodies my character more than any other that could have been chose. It shows my Irish heritage and my strength, resilience, and individuality. I’ve heard all types of pronunciations, from Berny to Briana. From a young age, I have gone by the nickname Brie. It all started that Kindergarten day when my teacher was writing the names of my classmates on the board. My parents had begun to call me Bri, with no “e.” I drew up enough courage that could fit in my body to said that I spell my name with an “e” at the end. When she wrote my name in this manner, my little kindergarten self was so full of pride, I thought I was going to bubble over from excitement. To this day my grandmother still refuses to use her perfect cursive handwriting to write my name how I spell it.
The name was chosen because of my mom’s best friend growing up. They were extremely close and spend every lick of time together that they could. They walked on the beat-up sidewalk to school together and climbed in the tree that were blossoming and full of pink berries. She too had the incomparable name that is Brienne. The name provided us with a close tie that still exists to this day. When ever she comes to visit, we enjoy taking walks in the leaf-filled woods or jogging together with my two sand colored dogs and talking and laughing the whole time. The independence and confidence that radiates off of her like sun rays is something that I can only try to obtain. She believes in every idea she has and always sticks to her guns. The link in our names is a daily reminder of what I hope to become and the attributes that I hope people think of when they see me. My young self always wished she had received a name that does not make people do a double-take when they see it. Now that I have recognized what the name actually means to my mom and now me, I could not have asked for a name that suited me better.
I have always been a clumsy person. I ran into helpless walls, and I tripped over mossy root in my backyard all before I was even seven. My excuse was always that I had not grown into my lengthy limbs, since I had been five feet since I was eight years old. I figured that I would grow out of my clumsy phase, but here we are and I still have issues daily with tripping over my feet or some other obscure objects that would be no problem for anyone else.
Basketball and other sports is where my clumsiness seems to highlight itself. One game we were playing in a cancer awareness game against St. Bernard's. Due to the magnitude of the game, there were many people in the crowd that had come out to watch the game in support of cancer research. Like any other regular game, my whole team lined up side-by-side for the announcement of the starters from each team. They began with the visiting team, the blue and gold bernardins, nothing notably interesting happened during their introductions. That all changed when I was announced. I got up and shook both the stripped refs hands and then moved on to the other team’s coach, which is where my embarrassment happened. As I turned to run back to the bench, two feet collided and I tripped over the St. Bernard's coach’s foot. I stumbled over to the rest of my team who were all dying of laughter. It took the astonished audience a good couple of seconds to realize the embarrassment that I had just created for myself, then they too were laughing at me. The tomato that I had turned into could only laugh along because it couldn’t think of anything else to do.
My navy blue house, with the big wood door, sits on a private dirt road out of the way of everyday traffic. The gigantic garage doors house our two cars as well as my father’s workshop in which he spends most of his weekends. Our kitchen is open, green and grand, and flows into the living room where my dogs rest and my family watches football on Sunday evenings. From there, a hallway brings us to my favorite room in the house, my bedroom.
Although the room may be small, the bright green space holds many childhood memories. My grandpa helped me paint it from light pink to vibrant green when I was eight, and I will always cherish that memory now that he is gone. All over the room there are pictures of my friends and I, as well as my two dogs and family. My bed has a comforter with bright flowers on it, which can never be seen due the excessive amounts of fluffy pillows piled up. My desk was built by my father and is pure white, it is always sitting there waiting for the next assignment that needs completion. Lined up nice and neat on top of the desk are my trophies from various sporting events from throughout my childhood.
The greatest thing about my room has to be what it means to me. It has always been a safe spot for me when things don’t go as I would have liked. I can lay on my bed or sit in my bean-bag chair that is on the floor. My room is also a constant in my life. Every night when I go to bed, my dogs Bailey always comes in and curls up next to me on my bed. I always know that she will be there when I go to sleep and when I wake up in the morning. My bedroom also holds all the stuff that is important to me in one place. I take pride in everything located in my bedroom, from my first basketball shoes to my first painting. The memories it holds and the potential for new ones in the future makes this my favorite room in the whole house.
I have always been interested in traveling and observing country’s cultures that are different than ours. I got this opportunity when my family traveled to the beautifully rainy Ireland. We explored ancient castle and climbed on their jaggedy rocks. Enjoyed their delicious cuisine and walked through parks with beautiful and colorful blossoming trees and large patches of vibrant clovers. It rained at least once a day and half the time the water was coming for you sideways, leaving you soaked and holding a useless and flimsy umbrella.
I had traveled all over the US and to Ireland, but nothing compares to the summer trip I took to Italy. My uncle’s 10th anniversary was the center of this occasion. He and his wife got married in tuscany, and to celebrate, he invited all his friends and their families to join them. We did many group activities, like a grueling bike ride through the hilly villages and orchards that line the streets of rural tuscany and taking a cooking class from an authentic italian chef. The trip was only supposed to last one week, but because of how much fun we had, my parents decided that we would stay an extra week and observe other beautiful cities in Italy, with another family that was there with us. We first traveled to Florence for three days and enjoyed all the outdoor markets and shops where I felt like I was on another planet due to all the craziness and people speaking different languages. Next, it was on to the island of Venice. We wandered through the cobblestone alleys and floated down it’s many rivers on the black gondolas with the striped operators. To end the amazing trip, we stayed in the hustle and bustle city that is Rome. We visited all the usual tourist havens, like the colosseum, but the most memorable place was a little bakery that was right next to our hotel. It sold these little pastries that were filled with a smooth strawberry jam with a marvelous scent that filled my nose from my hotel room, that I can still smell every time I remember the trip.