Today marks the 241st year of celebrating the independence of the United States. For the first time in my life, my day won’t consist of the Freedom Ride, a traditional parade through downtown Bend, Oregon, followed by barbecuing food and ending the evening watching fireworks shoot up above Pilot Butte. Instead, my day started with just a few hours of sleep due to a bad batch of Papa’s Pizza last night. We arrived back in our house from a weekend vacation at Cape Coast and decided that pizza would be quick and simple. Wrong move. Immediately after eating the pizza everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves as we played card games, but one by one I watched as my housemates each made a trip to the bathroom with an upset stomach. By 1 AM, we were down four people with what I think is food poisoning from pizza cheese. After an unsuccessful attempt to nurse them back to health, I realized I had to be up at 7 AM for my first day as an intern at the Business and Financial Times (B&FT).
Our bus driver Sammy arrived at 8 AM to take each of us to our internships. I heard that my internship was the furthest away because it was in Osu, but I didn’t expect to spend nearly four hours sitting on the bus. I sat anxiously as I watched my classmates got dropped off one by one until I was the only student left on the bus. When we arrived at the location of my internship, we came face to face with large iron gates with large padlocks; the business was clearly closed. Professors Chris Chavez, Deb Morrison, and Tom McDonald were also on the bus, so as we waited for an update from Leslie, we spoke about the small town I grew up in. “That’s the school Ashton Eaton went to!” exclaimed Deb. We laughed as I explained that the city had renamed the main highway ‘Ashton Eaton Highway’ in his honor. After what seemed like an eternity, we started to drive to the new location of B&FT which was nearly an hour away.
At about 12:30 PM the bus pulls up to a white three-story building with glass windows and I stand up to get off the bus. As I say my goodbyes, I received a hug from Deb, who had become a second mom to us in addition to Leslie. I felt so excited to get back into reporting after taking an unexpected break after graduating high school. As soon as I walk in the door I see about twenty men and only a handful of girls. I’m introduced to one editor Dominick who I’ve started to grow close with. His number one rule is that there is no such thing as reporters, only journalists. He then directed me to a group of desks in a corner where four other female interns sat. One by one, each journalist and editor introduced himself to me. The lifestyle editor Bernard asked me if I had experience. Wanting to impress him, I touted my writing skills and my previous position as editor of my high school newspaper. To my surprise, he responded by saying, “Okay then give me a 1000-word story by 10 AM tomorrow.” I felt confident because I had four hours left in the work day so it seemed like no problem! I spoke too soon. Dominick came back to my desk after hearing that I had experience and asked me for an additional 500-word feature story. I shrugged my shoulders, still feeling confident. Unfortunately, the four hours I thought that I would have to write two articles was occupied by research and assisting my co-workers. As soon as I got home, I started to write, re-write, and edit my stories before finally falling asleep with my laptop still in my hands.