First of all, HAPPY FUCKING BIRTHDAY to my lil big sis Sars, who turns 19 today! I lub you so much!

Easter was quite nice. My dad and I spent a few hours with the extended family, including my grandmother, aunt and uncle (my dad’s sister and her husband), my cousins and their kids, my second cousins. It was really nice.

I spent a lot of time talking with my cousin Ashley, who is fifteen. I first shared the pictures and videos of Vanilla Ice (which my cousins LOVED), and then I was telling her and my grandmother about Sonic and what an amazing place it is. Then my grandmother wanted me to tell Ashley about college and how great it is, so I could be a good influence and all that (hehehe), so I started talking about studying abroad and all my experiences in Florence — and Ashley’s eyes positively LIT UP. She kept asking me tons of questions, and both she and my grandmother laughed hysterically as I told the story about canyon-jumping in Switzerland and how the first jump was so frightening that it made the guys in our group gasp with fear, and the one guy who tried to jump ten times but chickened out all but the last time, and standing on the edge and saying, “Oh my God,” over and over as the rope PULLED me!

But the moment of the day came from my ten-year-old cousin Lauren. Lauren has the most gorgeous hair — golden brown, hanging to her waist, and the bottom of it is more crimpy than curly. Rather than curls, it hangs in giant zig-zags. It’s beautiful. Anyways, my aunt (her grandmother) goes, “Lauren, your hair is getting so long.”

Lauren goes, “When I take a shower, it gets stuck in my butt crack!”

We were on the floor.

My dad and I went home a bit later, he picked Sars up from school, and we had some delicious steaks and watched a few American Pie movies, the tail end of Napoleon Dinamita (en espanol), and some America’s Next Top Model (Dad left the family room for that). I later dropped Sars off at school and drove back home.

Strangely, this was the first time that my dad’s house — the house I have lived in my whole life — felt kind of like a foreign entity to me. I kind of felt as if I were trespassing. And I was genuinely glad to get back to my place in Somerville, even though I have absolutely no groceries. I guess this is morphing into my new home — and it didn’t hurt that Chris Daughtry’s “Home” was playing on the radio as I pulled in.

In other news, I’ve been checking out my student loan payments closely. So far I’ve been paying regularly (it deducts automatically) without looking closely, but I now realize how much has been interest — and it’s been frightening!

I pay $120.00 per month. Along with a refund from Fairfield and the startup fee, I have paid $642.90 total — $400.76 of which is interest. That’s 62.3%. However, my percentage of interest has been decreasing. I’ve been doing the regular payments since January. Here’s how it has added up:

January: 100% interest, 0% principal
February: 85.25% interest, 14.75% principal
March: 72.85% interest, 27.15% principal

Wow. I am doing math, and it is making sense.

It seems that my percentage is reduced 14.75% either per month or per payment. I would imagine that it’s per month, but I’ll find that out when I call them tomorrow. I really want to understand this more, and calling them will help me with that.

April: 62.1%
May: 52.94%
June: 45.13%
July: 38.48%
August: 32.8%
September: 27.96%
October: 23.84%
November: 20.32%
December: 17.33%
January 2008: 14.76%
February 2008: 12.59%
March 2008: 10.73%
April 2008: 9.15%
May 2008: 7.8%
June 2008: 6.65%
July 2008: 5.67%
August 2008: 4.83%
September 2008: 4.12%
October 2008: 3.51%
November 2008: 2.99%
December 2008: 2.55%

In case you’re wondering, the original total amount that I am paying back is $18,084.58.

Don’t think that I’m not happy to do this. I am very happy and proud to pay this amount for my college education, after all that my parents sacrificed so that I could go to a great college. I’m the first person in my family to attend a private college.

Even so, if anybody leaves a comment along the lines of, “Wow, I don’t have to pay anything,” that officially makes you an ASSHOLE!

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