VVD: Veritas Vacation Day at St. Agnes
During those dreaded weeks of the school year when homework has piled up and tests have been scheduled period after period, there comes a point of desperation where the students of St. Agnes can study no longer and must simply wish, please, please, please let it be VVD. Those wishes did no good fall semester but last week, students began each day with increased vigor in hoping for VVD. Consequently, when Friday rolled around and morning pledge and prayer being were read over the intercom, the freshmen of Ms. Xenia Murtaugh’s English class subtly eyed each other with tense smiles, bouncing with hope and anticipation for pledge and prayer to finish with a special announcement. But when prayer ended with a definitive “Amen,” they sat down with a thud and looked around the room to be met with their classmates mirroring faces of disappointment. They opened their copies of The Odyssey to start class, but as Ms. Murtaugh began talking, Christina Aguilera’s smooth voice filled the room over the speakers: “Woah-oh-oh-oh, I just wanna feel this moment; Woah-oh-oh-oh, I just wanna feel this moment.” Ms. Murtaugh looked at her students and them back at her—everyone slowly closing their books with growing smiles. Not even a second later, excited screams ran through the halls. Doors slammed open, girls stampeded the hallways, and the freshmen of Ms. Murtaugh’s English leapt up and out of their seats. It was VVD!
Of course, to those unfamiliar with St. Agnes, this makes no sense. Why were students leaving class? What was with all the excitement? What is this “VVD?”
Though most students know this reputable day by its acronym, Veritas Vacation Day is one of the most beloved traditions at St. Agnes. It is unlike the school’s other traditions like International Food Fest, where students and teachers are informed of the event weeks in advance and are scheduled on the school calendar. VVD is a surprise day in the school year when classes are cancelled and replaced with various entertainment and activities. It is planned by Molly Sawyer, Director of Student Activities, and Courtney Orsak, Dean of Students, and her team, who are the only people in the entire school—including faculty, that know when it will occur. Students and teachers only find out when VVD is happening the day of. However, that has not stopped students from predicting when it will happen each year. This year’s rumor mill churned out theories VVD could not be during Lent, must happen before Spring Break, and only took place after assemblies. Of course, when this year’s VVD proved all those hypotheses wrong, it was concluded that regardless of the word on the street about VVD, the only people who truly know its plans are Ms. Sawyer and Ms. Orsak.
Still, all this secretive planning repeatedly proves its purpose. The day began with a roller-skating dance-off between class presidents and representatives led by The Lab, followed by students rushing to the Courtyard for colorful hair spray and face painting—a VVD staple. After the Courtyard was successfully left in fogs of blue, pink, and purple hair color, the students explored the rest of the activities. The Commons was taken over by winding lines for the caricature artists and games of Jenga and Connect 4; the field was packed with students waiting to ride ponies and pet goats; the Gym was littered with mountains of shoes taken off for inflatables and obstacle courses; the Library tables were covered in handmade bracelets and games of Bingo; the Pavilion smelled of buttery popcorn; and of course, the Cafeteria was serving free lunch. The seniors were also treated to a senior-exclusive Silly String fight before lunch.
Per VVD procedure, students were released from their day of fun early, bearing all the tell-tale marks of St. Agnes’ Veritas Vacation Day—painted faces, colorful hair, and wide smiles.
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