Monday, May 30, 2011

My Life and a Little Bit More

Where to start... well, first an explanation for Sumin:

On Friday night after my finals were over, the Muses went out for dinner and karaoke, lot's of fun, and we ended our adventure waiting for the Saferide in front of ZBT at about 11 pm. Through the door, I spied what appeared to be a creature known as a Sumin amidst the deep jungle of packages and frat brothers... but I couldn't be sure. As I squinted my eyes through the darkness and into the bright building, it only became clear that it was indeed the rare species at the last moment before it disappeared deeper into the recesses of the forest. Fearing to lose my group and miss my transport (and also awkward social situations had I still been mistaken), I dared not follow the adorable beast. Instead, I sought to communicate with it remotely and coax it to come out into the open. I found that unfortunately I did not have a record of it's tracking number, despite my theoretical security clearance to know such things, and before I could think of another strategy the transport arrived to deliver us back to Base Camp MIT. I lamented the loss of this opportunity, but resolved that I would find my one-of-a-kind dear again if it took all summer (which apparently it will since I missed its departure from its former dwelling place).

In other news, I made a huge mountain of stuff in the triple when moving out of my room in an hour and a half, cleaned it up a little bit, then spent the week packing up LMF while neglecting my own copious amounts of stuff... leading to a mad dash to get myself ready to leave. Oh well, so what if my shirts in storage aren't folded as well as they could be.

Of course, the week wasn't ALL work. I went out to dinner with people, ate lots of froyo, watched movies, and made scrumptious dinners twice with JJ, who I'm sure most of you have met by now. Also, I'm pretty sure that one of my menus next year will include the mildly candied mango yams that I invented the recipe for on one of these occasions. You know, when life gives you mangoes and sweet potatoes...

Getting closer to the present day, on Saturday Daniel, Teresa, and I packed my suitcases into the trunk of Daniel's car before hopping in the cab and driving off to look for adventure. We met up with Ashley Brown and Michael, and Julie and Luis, in NYC and hung around Central Park for a while before having a delicious dinner and going to see Catch Me if You Can, the first time I've ever seen a show on Broadway! It was a very exciting experience, and it was also interesting to be in the city when it wasn't cold outside...

On the way back to Daniel's house the highway decided that it wanted our drivers to fall asleep at the wheel and kill us all, so it proceeded to make our exit disappear. Luckily, Ashley and Daniel had more willpower than the glorified piece of asphalt over which we rolled and we found our way without any fatalities.

After a good night's sleep and a nice breakfast, we were on the road again. I was dropped unceremoniously at the Newport airport before my car-mates rushed off to the train station. Actually that's a highly unfair statement, I just like the word unceremoniously, in reality we all said a nice, though hurried, goodbye.

The airport was a breeze, relatively small compared to what I often see and quick to get through security. About an hour later I was boarding my first propeller plane for a short flight to Philadelphia. It turned out that the second leg of my journey was the more interesting, however. I managed to get on the plane and stow my bag relatively early in the boarding call for my section, so I sat down to get settled. After a while a young woman in the aisle pointed to the window seat next to me and said "I think that's me". I, of course, got up to give her room to get by, and as I did, she asked me if I was allergic to cats. I said no, not thinking too much of it, I mean maybe she'd been handling cats and had hair all over her clothes. Then I heard a mew from what looked to be her carry-on bag, but on closer inspection was an animal carrier! She was bringing her cat with her from Philadelphia to Seattle! The cat's name was Angus, as I found out in further discussion, and he meowed occasionally for attention throughout the flight. I saw his head once when she was feeding him in the bag, very cute.

My parents and I had a bit of difficulty finding each other at the airport, as my flight got in 40 minutes early, so they missed me at the gate but all the info boards said I was on-time, so they didn't think that was possible. Anyway, now I'm back in Bremerton, and it's not as hot as Boston but it is sunny, and all I've got to do for now is get off my bum and find something useful to do with myself... I'll keep you posted on how that goes... :)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Giving Dance

It's 9:00pm (GMT). I slept for three hours last night (on the plane), and for about five hours the night before. In sum: I am exhausted. Brace yourselves, because one wave of jet-lag-sleepiness and another of urge-to-blog just hit me in phase.

Let's begin with the flight. I'm a big believer in getting to know the person sitting next to you - after all, you only get to meet him or her once (unless, of course, something freaky happens and you end up going to camp and then university in Cambridge with the kid sitting next to you on the flight to New Mexico - but that's a story for another time.) If you're shy and can't think of something to say, here's a suggestion: "SO, what brings you to [insert destination here]?" As an example, here's what happened this morning (GMT)/evening (EST):

Me: SO, what brings you to London?
Guy: Oh, I'm not going to London - I have to change there for my flight to Nepal.
Guy: ...Yes!
Me: I took this class in the fall called Linguistics, and my partner was from Nepal! I interviewed him about Nepali, and wrote a few papers about the language.
Guy: Oh, really??
Me: YEAH! //super pumped
Guy: :D! //also super pumped

We chatted for a good hour or so - about Nepali, Nepal, and London...about MIT and how gorgeous the Charles river is (he works in Kendall Square!) and how the Beatles are awesome and how people in Nepal are turning their backs on the traditional folk music in favour of more Western influences (LAME ALERT). I won't transcribe the entire conversation (though I recorded a decent amount of it in my journal immediately afterwards for fear of forgetting) but here are a couple of excerpts that I particularly enjoyed. From now on, let us refer to "Guy" as "ANG", for "Adorable Nepali Guy", because he was 1. from Nepal, 2. a guy, and 3. small and adorable.

Excerpt 1
ANG: So, where do you live?
Me: On MIT campus. My mom told me to enjoy it now, because after I graduate I won't be able to afford a home with such a nice view.
ANG: Oh, yes! The Charles river is so beautiful - I like to walk along it, especially at night, with all the lights.
Me: YES. The best part is seeing the reflection of the lights in the water.
ANG: Yes!!! That's it!!! It gives dance to the scene.

I really liked the idea of giving "dance" to a scene. Totally accurate.

Excerpt 2
Me: *putting notebook away*
ANG: So...are you writing a book?
Me: What?
ANG: You were writing in that notebook.
Me: Oh, haha, no. I just wrote down what the flight attendant said over the loudspeaker; when people say things that I want to remember, I put them in my journal so I don't forget them. I thought what she said was interesting.
ANG: You could publish that! If you think it's interesting, perhaps other people will also think it is interesting. It could could be...
Me: Oh! Like...a collection of quotes and excerpts from random people that I've recorded. That could be nice.
ANG: Yes! It would be very unique.


Anyway, moving on. Other noteworthy aspects of the flight:
-The guy listening to Beyoncé on the plane's entertainment system, because he reminded me of Noah (although I bet his name isn't as cool as NOAH MAXWELL ARBESFELD). I swear I wasn't creeping on him, or anything - I just happened to be standing behind him for eight billion hours while waiting for the toilet to become vacant. Speaking of plane toilets, there is actually no sound in the world scarier than the flush of an airplane toilet. Since before I can remember, I've been going through the same routine - I press the button, then immediately shrink against the wall with my eyes shut and my fingers in my ears. Otherwise, the sound makes me jump.
-The couple sitting behind me: otherwise known as "The World's Most Annoying Old British Couple". They complained about pretty much everything. Including me reclining my seat during the flight while I tried to sleep, which is ridiculous.
-Randomly bumping into two girls I know from my FPOP (Sophie - Carissa and Rachel were on the flight! Apparently Rachel has family in London). They had the misfortune of encountering me 30 seconds after I woke up from my nap, which is just...a terrible time to interact with me.
-Finding out that Antigua has 365 beaches - one for every day of the year. Let's go.
-Accidentally groping the foot of the old man behind me, while trying to find my own shoe. I thought it felt a little too leathery to be my sneaker...
-Being showered by sunlight when the plane turned after landing. It was like London was happy to see me :)

I don't want this post to drag on too long (and goodness knows what I'm saying, in my state) so I'll wrap up. After I dropped my stuff off at home and took a shower, I walked to school (across Abbey Road!) and delivered hugs to my friends and old teachers. I played the trumpet in jazz band, and played Halo in Physics C (apparently they do nothing productive whatsoever anymore. Shhhh, don't tell anyone.) I chatted with my old computer science teacher and his new wife (my old college counselor - AHHH) about America's public education system. I had lunch with my sister and then spent four hours in Regent's Park with two friends - one goes to uni here in London, and the other to uni at Beloit. Now I'm sitting in my bedroom (with my first and only roommate...otherwise known as my little sister) listening to my mom practice the piano, getting ready to go to bed (where by "go to bed" I mean "sleep for 30 hours straight"), and missing all of you very dearly. I love you! Take care and keep me posted. By posting. On this blog.


Monday, May 23, 2011

please excuse my wordiness..

I should most definitely be asleep right now, so I'm sorry if this comes out entirely incomprehensible. In short, after several long flights I am currently in Singapore, very sleep deprived due to the 12hr time difference with Boston.

Let's backtrack to Friday. I woke up at 6am to study for my last final (although granted that was probably entirely unnecessary except for the next event->), said goodbye to Alan, took my last final, contemplated leaving early around 11am-- and 11:15-- and 11:30-- and finally left at 11:40 and was done with sophomore year. I crammed the last of my stuff into boxes, recruited Sumin to sit on my suitcase so I could close it, moved stuff to metro storage, dragged my luggage down the stairs, said goodbye to the few people that I saw on the way out, and left with Elizabeth to the airport.

Here the wonderful story of my experience with the airport begins: please excuse my complaining and run-on sentences...
uneventful, aside from the fact that I sat next to another MIT sophomore, Anurag, that I met briefly at the summer send-off, and other sophomore across the aisle. Anurag and I chatted briefly, then he promptly fell asleep for most of the flight, while I watched 4 episodes of Doctor Who before my battery died, and poof! I was home, smelling the wonderfully familiar salt water air.

30hrs at home included: visiting my grandmother, uncle, and aunt briefly on the way home from the airport, walking on the beach with my mom, eating pho for lunch, and packing..oh sooo much packing and repacking and more packing, since I failed to realize that I own so much summer clothing, so after taking everything I packed in my suitcase out and dragging a bunch more stuff out of my closet, I had a nice heaping pile next to my suitcase approximately 2+ times the size. Needless to say, my parents flipped and immediately started harping on me to pack light... anyway, I finished cramming stuff in and making sure it wasn't going to be over 50lbs, printed out all the forms I needed to sign, went to church, briefly chatted with a friend after mass, ate pho again for dinner, drove 2 hrs to LA, waited in line for an hr to check-in, and was 2hrs early for my flight after passing security. By this time, I was extraordinarily tired since my flight was at 1am pst, which was essentially 4am and I rarely stay up that late ever..unless I have good reason. It's more likely that I get up at 4am, but that's unrelated..

14hrs of sleeping..ish for 5-6hrs, contemplating life for an indeterminate amount of time, not eating disgusting food, watching Doctor Who again. My neighbor woke up while I was watching WWIII, and started watching over my shoulder, so I asked him if he wanted to watch to watch the next episode with me, and successfully introduced him to the amazingness :) Battery died, we chatted about his family, MIT, neuroscience, etc. and split, me to sg and him to Manila.

first of all, taipei has like no food except chocolate, well from what I could find around my gate at least. I arrived in taipei around 6:30am Monday morning and yeah, not much sleep.. anyway, uneventful- it was raining in taipei. 4.5hr flight later, I'm in sg around 2pm.

My second?/third? cousin picked me up from the airport, we took a taxi to PGP (Prince George Park Residences at NUS), searched around for my room, fiddled with the key that isn't a key but a transmitter button thingy, sat for a bit, explored a bus around campus and got lunch. I also figured out that avocado juice is really really good. Took a bus and then train/subway to her appt, stopping briefly to get some misc groceries and stuff, stayed a bit at her place, and then returned home with all the stuff now. The room is small, no a/c, but has lots of shelving stuffs and a ceiling fan, so it's fine. Sorry I don't have pictures of anything yet...they might come later..

Anyway, I'm currently sitting in the common area in the dorm where I can get wifi. There are people playing Star Wars Risk next to me, but from the way they're talking, they don't seem to be all that pleasant, but rather loud and obnoxious and full of curses..and adamantly claim they aren't geeks. Thus they aren't cool- despite the fact that they are playing star wars risk. But they don't actually know how to play because they are arguing about the rules while reading them. Idk, I don't know how to play risk, but it seems very complicated. Also, they fail at speaking the very limited French that they were trying to. But I will refrain from interacting with them for the time being.

So this was obnoxiously long, and you all probably didn't care about any of that, so I apologize for my lack of comprehension and long-winded empty words. It also recently actually dawned on me that I'm really really really far away from anywhere/anyone I can call home :( so I dearly miss you all.

Goodnight all! or good morning, I guess, to most of you, ahh time is so confusing.. why can't I just be a time traveler?

Sunday, May 22, 2011

So much stuff!

If you ever came over to my room in the past year, you know that I am not exactly the let's-keep-everything-organized-and-clean type. Well, given the amount of stuff I apparently had, I think I actually did a pretty good job; I had a box full of just shoes, a guitar, a violin, a flute, a harmonica case (I have no clue where the harmonica itself went), more clothes than I remember bringing, several notebooks and books I barely even glanced at in the past year, some really cute stuffed animals... okay, this list is just getting boring. The point, if you haven't gotten used to my rambling way of talking yet, is that I really had too much stuff.
I moved some of my stuff to ZBT on Friday night. To the movers' pleasant surprise, I had one box of misc stuff, one small box of shirts, one thing of bedding and pillow, and one box of Zizzie's things. Too bad I didn't really pack that day, because if I had known just how much capacity those drawers in my room held, I would've sent more stuff to the house. Let's just say that my dad's mini van almost didn't fit everything and that my parents are going to make sure that I take half as much stuff next fall.

Anyway, enough about me complaining about having too many things. Summer has so far been alright - not too great, but just kind of boring. I watched the finale of Gossip Girl and NCIS last night, and was kind of disappointed at Gossip Girl. My parents and I went shopping today for my shoes for the summer, except we ended up with a dress for me and shoes for my dad. I'm now seriously considering whether my feet are misshaped or not, because none of the shoes I tried on really fit me well. Other than that, I've just been trying to come up with covers for random songs on piano and watching some Korean variety TV shows.

I'm flying to Zurich on Sunday, and from there I'll be visiting Paris, some places in Belgium, and Amsterdam. I'm really excited; just think about all the delicious desserts and chocolate I'll hopefully get to eat....yum! Hopefully I won't get sick again; my throat is kind of iffy at the moment but I will not allow any more sickness!

I miss LMF and have a surprising urge to learn...I don't know why. I might watch some OCW thiis week, but we'll see. Safe travels to everyone going home this week!

Love and a thought-filled mind,


Salut tout le monde! C'est moi, Zizz.

This is the 2011 LMF summer blog. The point? To have a place where we can all update each other on our un-hosed and care-free lives. I really hope y'all post whenever you feel like it. No need to wait until y'all have 'important' updates. I, at the very least, want to hear everything you guys have to say.

How it works? The blog is attached to the google account I created for this purpose. If you have your own Blogger account (google account works too), email me and I'll add you. If you don't, you can log in here using the email address and the password that's the same as the one we use for other things. If you've forgotten, email me. If you're using the LMF account, please start your post by saying who you are! I mean, we could guess, and maybe we would be able to tell if you didn't say, but it'd be embarrassing for us to guess wrong, right?

And now that I've finished the logistics stuff, I'll write an actual post:

There's not that much to say on my end so I'll just keep it short. On Friday, since I was at the airport really early because I shared a cab with Adrienne, I decided to standby for the earlier flight home and got on it, so I got home around 7 rather than around 9 as planned, which was nice. I mostly spent that evening talking to my parents and my sister (my sister and I had the fun discovery that we can now share clothes, which is pretty exciting).

Yesterday I spent most of the day cleaning my room and doing laundry and things; I kind of left a mess after spring break. I went to my friend Jenny's graduation party in the afternoon, so I went to Borders to get a gift for her, and also just to go buy books. It's really hard for me to resist going to Borders now that I have free access to a car and all. So I bought myself volume 1 of Isaac Asimov's complete short stories. I'm excited to read them.

In other news, my orchestra teacher officially offered me the job for counseling at orchestra camp this summer, so I believe this is what I will be doing. I get to go up to Interlochen for a week in August, coach chamber music, teach music theory, and chill with orchestra people. It's exciting.

That's all I have to say. Looking forward to reading posts by all of you!