Once a Concordian…

‘Home’ is such a simple, yet satisfying word. The noun itself is associated with comfort, ‘a state of physical ease’, which is precisely how I felt during the ‘Recent Leavers Reunion’ on the 10th of February. It was a rush of the familiar:  the Head Girl of 2014/15 who had welcomed me into the embracing walls of Concord, the squad of 2016 who taught me that confidence was everything, the boy – now man? – who never seemed to leave the stage throughout my form 4 and who I aspired to be like. I walked round the sports hall – which had been transformed into an astonishing disco (imagine a regular disco, then add more disco balls, a stage which lights up, elegant couches and cotton candy… Yes, cotton candy) – and hugged everyone I could remember, and then anyone I couldn’t. When I finally got on the stage to dance, it was exhilarating; it felt as though we were all extensions of one body, simultaneously pulsating to the beat. Except, of course, it was more like a mass of energetic, although mostly off-beat, moves accompanied by elated smiles and constant uproars of laughter.

However, despite all the familiarity, change was apparent. For one, the number of unusual hairstyles was incredible; once long, brown, straight hair was now a wavy bob of peach. I heard hilarious stories about the benefits and drawbacks of university, the affordances and constraints of a gap year and unsurprisingly frequent reiterations of ‘I miss Concord’, and ‘enjoy it while it lasts’. I saw couples who had begun their relationship in Concord, and new ones who ended up in the same university, and the – in some cases, only – connection which we all shared, the constant of it all was of Concord itself. Although ever-changing in size and technology, the Concord community is still as welcoming as ever, and the joy is nearly palpable.

Sometimes clichés say it best: home is where the heart is, and once a Concordian, always a Concordian.

Alisar Tabet – 6.1