I always used to hear my Dad telling stories about his time as a boarder, but no matter how many stories you hear, the boarding experience will be different for everyone. It becomes what you choose to make it. Some people get homesick, others not so much. Luckily for me, I was never one to struggle with homesickness but that doesn’t mean that I don’t miss my family. It’s definitely not always easy being away from loved ones for extended periods of time, but when it comes down to it, being a boarder means that you are surrounded by loved ones every day. Although the people you live with in boarding may not be your family, they’re definitely the next best thing.
My first impression of boarding here in Bunbury was from the perspective of a tiny Year 8 kid who had just come from a school with about 100 students, to a school where I would be living with that many people on a daily basis. It was a bit of a shock being near the city, but not quite in it, and so was living with both girls and boys, especially since I had been an only child. But despite the tree change, starting at boarding, for me, wasn’t a difficult experience at all. I found settling in rather easy, and I can put that down to the friendliness and welcoming vibrancy with which I was greeted within my first few weeks here. To this day, that is still my favourite thing about boarding. The willingness of everyone here to be a part of the community that boarding creates – to give a friendly smile to a passer-by and to always be there for one another. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not always easy, it’s the same as any family situation. There are some days when your siblings are the best things that have happened to you, and then there are other days when they’re not. But either way, at the end of the day there is no one in the world you would rather have by your side. Boarding ultimately it teaches you the life skills of compromise, independence, organisation, people skills, and lets you feel what a real sense of community is.
From my personal experience I would recommend boarding to most people as it gives you friends that will last a lifetime (as clichéd as it sounds, it’s true!) and it allows you to feel what belonging is. Boarders are special people and only they will really know what it means to be a part of that community and second family boarding creates. I certainly know that I wouldn’t trade my time here for anything in the world.
Macushla Quicke :: Year 12