In junior English I had to write an allegory once, and I wrote about my consistent mispronunciation of the word allegory and how I figured I had to make my mistakes out loud in order to be able to fix them, no matter how well I knew I was wrong.

When I was a sophomore and a junior I was an oftentime frequenter of a website called Teen Ink, which largely helped me endure my awful sophomore year and gave me confidence about writing. Last summer at Sjolunden (the best place in the world) I met a girl who was also involved with Teen Ink. I’d known her previously by association while at camp, but hadn’t lived with her until that year and we ended up talking about it and exchanging usernames to give each other some feedback.

The other day I got bored and looked her up again and found that she had written a short novel of sorts. I don’t know if you’d call it a novella. Anyway, it was brief and charming, and wonderfully not clichéd, about romance going slightly wrong at a small, exclusive language-centric boarding school. The good part was, as an old friend once said, that she “showed how love and the world are not so easy to comprehend and they change.” It wasn’t a hackneyed happy ending. It happened the way these things sometimes happen. I liked it very much.

As I was reading I realized that it was definitely an allegory for Sjolunden, the language camp at which I met her and which has greatly influenced both of our lives. I am sure it has been a bigger part of her life than of mine, but it has changed us both nevertheless. Anyway, to continue. This language-centric boarding school was based on the place itself, and everyone in the story had some sort of matching personality in the people we see at Sjolunden every year. Some of the minor characters (on the soccer team, for instance) I didn’t recognize, but nearly everyone else mentioned by name and given any depth I recognized. I think I may remember some of the events she depicted in the story too, although I don’t know.

So that was cool.

I also decided today that I am going to raise my kids bilingually in English and Swedish, and if my significant other has a problem with that I will not be having kids with him, and that is that.

So that was also cool.


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