As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end. Somebody finishes the last piece of cake, TV series’ end, your friends grow up and move away, and family members pass away. It doesn’t mean it’s the end, just that there are bigger and better things ahead to be explored and experienced.

Over the past 12 months, I have spent every Tuesday night, save two over winter break, in the office with the rest of the staff working to put out the magazine. We had to make some tough decisions, jokes, Chinese food runs and poor musical choices (we like to listen to a lot of ’80s music in here and I, for one, am not embarrassed to admit that I love it) to get through them all, but we succeeded. At times, the nights were agonizingly long — problem after problem would arise and we would be here until one, two, even four o’clock in the morning in order to finish in time for print. Yet here we are, already at our last issue together.

This is a bittersweet moment. Although we have had our fair share of troubles and stresses, I am going to miss it. I’ve spent more than two and a half years at buzz, starting as a serendipitous Food & Drink writer and somehow working my way up to Editor-in-Chief. I was, and still am, honored to have been chosen as Editor-in-Chief a year ago and am so grateful for every experience.

We decided as a staff to go out with a bang and make our final issue completely illustrated. You won’t find any pictures in this issue. Just a bunch of awesome illustrations accompanying the stories, as well as some comics written and drawn by our staff.

I can’t believe that in addition to this being my last issue at buzz, these next few months will also be my last here in Champaign-Urbana. I have made some wonderful, caring and loving friends, and have learned more than I ever thought possible from a small town in the middle of nowhere. Or so I thought when I first came here.

I have been pleasantly surprised in every endeavor while in Champaign-Urbana. Besides the people — who are wonderfully true, honest and hardworking — there have been unlimited opportunities at every turn. This town is truly something special and will always be fond in my heart.

As one chapter of my life comes to a close, several more open. I will graduate from Illinois in several months to a world unknown. I’ve got a lot of options, but have no idea what to do. I’m absolutely petrified, but ecstatic. I know this isn’t an Oscars speech, but it is my swan song. So, I also want to thank my Mom, Dad and late grandfather for making all of this possible. I love you. Watch out, world, I’m comin’ for ya.

About The Author

Samantha Bakall

Samantha is a senior in news-editorial journalism and Italian with a passion for cooking and photography. She also has a particularly large affinity for cured meat products, specifically bacon and sausages. She loves to read/write about food, learn about the science behind it and will eat whatever you put in front of her. Samantha aspires to write for a food publication.

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