New Name

So, I fell behind on Reverb10, and I honestly don’t have much intention of catching up on most of them, but this one caught my eye:

December 23 – New Name Let’s meet again, for the first time. If you could introduce yourself to strangers by another name for just one day, what would it be and why?

I’m not going to address the prompt, per se, but the subject of having a new name. I love having so many different things people call me by, be it nicknames or endearments. My mom’s always called me Bunny, I’m known as Hez to lots of people and Hezza or Dud to a few. I’m even “wife” to someone, though our marriage is only Facebook official.

This year I got a new nickname: Heather Mae.

Heather Mae is my honorary Southern name. I met a lot of Southern Americans this year (well, more than I’d met before and more than I expected to meet in England!), but this name was bestowed on me by my hilarious friend Alycia.

Alycia and I at Housesteads

Alycia Jo (not actually her name, but her Southern name as well) is from Georgia. When she and I are together, we’re sort of like a whirlwind. We never stop talking and laughing. I have so much fun with her. We spent a lot of time together in the second semester, because we were taking all the same classes. We spent even more time together in August, ranting about our dissertations and going out to dinner to make sure we fed ourselves at least once a day.

This kind of picture is pretty typical for us...

One particular weekend we did a high ropes course in the Lake District, with our friends J Lo and Becky Sue (also her Southern name… J Lo can’t have a Southern name because she’s Jenny from the Block). We also spent the entire night watching Disney movies. In my mind, that night sums up my friendship with Alycia. We laughed so hard it hurt and it was the best break I could imagine from writing a dissertation.

At the high ropes course!

When I went back to Newcastle for my graduation, I spent most of my week with Alycia and her mom. They were nice enough to let me sleep on their floor for the duration, and it was so great to see Alycia again. It was like we’d never left, I think our conversation pretty much picked off where August 26th had left off.

Me and Alycia at grad.

When I think of Alycia, I think of laughter and having fun and taking silly pictures. Also, of Mulan. Because even though she won’t do it in front of people anymore, we do a great duet to I’ll Make a Man Out of You from Mulan.

Alycia gave me one of my favourite Christmas presents this year:

Merry Christmas y'all

Heather Mae, my new name in 2010.

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