Easter in the Bay!

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Spring break has officially ended and classes have resumed.  This is always such a bittersweet time.  I’m sad that break is over, but spring quarter really is the best quarter.  The sun is shining, fun events like Spring Sing occur, and I have no Friday classes!

It was nice that Spring Break coincided with Easter this year! I spent mine in San Francisco with a friend’s family.  One of the great things about college is that you make friends all over the state, country, and world! I drove up to San Francisco for Easter weekend and then back down to LA Sunday afternoon.  It was an fun and exciting road trip!  Fortunately, it did not rain during our trip into the city, but we got to see a really cool lightning storm on the way down south.

Even though the drive down was a bit wet, I have high hopes for this quarter!  I am done with all of my GEs and my schedule is fantastic.  I am only taking my major related classes and I can look forward to exploring the city on my three day weekends.  The sky is clear, the days are long, and the city is at its finest.

I’ll keep you posted on my adventures!  Next week I plan on going to “The Last Bookstore”, later the Getty, and of course the beach!  Not to mention all of the events that will be on campus….including SPRING SING! One of the most epic college talent shows! Last y!ear Sara Bareilles was a judge!  I can’t wait for this quarter!

Spring Break…it’s Good to be Home!

 

Spring Break can some times seem like the eye of the storm.  On one side of break we have finals from Winter Quarter.  On the other side we have the entirety of Spring Quarter.  This one short week is the only thing that comes between each 11 weeks!  That being said, it is one of the best breaks, even if it is the shortest.

At lot of my friends are in some really exciting places this break!  One friend is in New Zealand, a team of 20 friends are in Tokyo, and a ton of friends are spending their days in Las Vegas!  As for me, I returned home to Hollister.  So far it has been very relaxing!  My parents moved into a smaller house in a different neighborhood, but we have settled in nicely.

It has been wonderful being able to sit in bed without worrying about homework, readings, tests, or papers.  I’ve been able to try making all of the fancier recipes that I have wanted try at school but haven’t had the time to experiment with.  Some of them have been very successful and I cannot wait to try them again at school.  It has been fun to cook with my dad and I’ve even gotten my picky-eating mom and brother to try some interesting things (like barley and lentils).  I’ve also been using this time to catch up on all the reading I wanted to do during  the last couple of weeks.

Overall it has been a great start to break! Hollister is very different from LA and it’s rare for me to spend more than a couple days at home.  Whenever I am home, I miss the excitement of LA, but my hometown is so green!  My new neighborhood has a cute little duck pond and I’ve found some great runs to do this week!  The more time I spend in LA, the more I realize how different it is from Hollister.  No matter where I go, I always end up missing my “other” home.  See you in a week, Los Angeles!

A quick weekend trip before Fall kicks in

Hey all, can you believe it that Fall quarter is about to start in 1 week???? Summer does go super fast!! I took the chance to get a quick weekend trip to San Francisco to avoid LA heat and to avoid the idea of thinking back to homework and midterms in about 1 week, haha..

Anyway, so I made a few stops before finally reached San Francisco. For you who’s not from California, I would definitely highly recommend to visit these places if you haven’t got a chance.

First stop, Solvang 🙂 It is a small cute town where you can get one of the best Danish bakery! Not to mention, they also have one of the best pancake I’ve ever tried. Their pancake is thin and crispy and all the right amount of deliciousness 😉 They were having a Danish Day celebration when I went there. It is a cute small parade where everyone dressed up in Danish traditional attire and they have lots of dancing and traditional food across the stress!

Next stop, Monterey! What a lovely city by the beach Monterey is! 🙂 The weather is so much cooler, and I immediately fall in love with the atmosphere of the town. They have a lot of unique local store. They also have Monterey Bay Aquarium there (I would recommend to visit it if you haven’t done so) where they have the cutest sea otter I’ve ever seen!!! They are super adorable and will show you tricks during feeding time! I also went to visit a small attraction store where they have mirror maze and laser challenge. I tried the laser challenge and it was so much fun! You will enter a dark room and then they will turn on the laser all across the room (imagine a James Bond movie where he tried to cross the room without touching the laser detector). The goal is to reach the end of the room with the shortest amount of time needed. SUPER FUN!!! 😉

Last stop, San Fransisco! Perfect place to avoid the LA heat, haha.. I even had to wear 2 jackets!! I visited the Union Square and I also went to get the best fried oreos on the Fisherman Wharf! The lady is really nice and she gave us 2 extra fried oreo when she found out that I drove from LA to get her fried oreos. I’m talking about the best from the best of the fried oreo that you might have tried in LA fair or OC fair 😉

It was so much fun to have a quick get away trip from LA traffic and LA heat!!

Playing Tourist

 

After realizing that I only have a few more weeks before school starts, I had a sudden urge to go out and walk around my hometown, Monterey Bay. I packed myself a backpack with a bottle of water and a book to read, put on my earphones, and I was off.

Living in the bay area, I am surrounded by the ocean. Basically, no matter where I go, I’ll see water soon or later. So I ended up in Spanish Bay in Pebble Beach (which, by the way, is known for not only their beaches, but also for its beautiful golf courses). As I walked along the boardwalk in the sunshine with soft music playing in the background, I realized what a beautiful place Monterey Bay is. And I was mad at myself for not noticing that earlier. I had been so busy with life that I didn’t have the time nor the desire to stop and enjoy the beauty of nature. Although I have lived here for over 7 years, I have never taken the time to just walk around and really get to know the town. When I start school again, I hope I could take a break once in a while and just look around and be thankful for the place I am living in. No matter how busy we are with our daily lives, appreciating the nature is essential. It relieves stress, and increases optimism and courage.

Monterey Bay is famous for being a huge tourist attraction, especially during the summer season. Tourists come from all over the world. Walking through the tens of hundreds of tourists in Cannery Row and Fisherman’s Wharf, I probably heard over 5 different languages. Before, I could not understand why people from thousands of miles away would take the trouble to come and spend their vacations here, but now that I’ve been a tourist, I can see why they love this place so much.

So I encourage you all to play tourist for a day and tour around your hometown before leaving for college. Take a friend and visit a museum, stop by that coffee shop you passed by hundreds of times, find good eateries in town, and find out places you’ve never been to. Really get to know where you come from before you move on to a new place.

Olympic Trials

Chances are on most weekends throughout the school year, I am judging a gymnastics meet. It is the dream college student job; I get paid and fed. To keep my judges certification, I am required to do a certain number of continuing education hours. Some of these can be met by in-gym observation, but a certain number designated as “clinic hours” can only be earned through attendance at National Congress. Lucky for me, National Congress coincided with the US Olympic Trials, and was only a short trip away in San Jose. During the day I attended what essentially is gymnastics school. I listened to the updates for the 2013 season and watched some of the greatest coaches lecture on technique and drills. At night, I attended the competition.

Olympic Trials have to be one of the most exciting competitions- only five people out of the tens of thousands of gymnasts can make the team. This year was particularly heartbreaking as veterans including the 2008 Olympic Champion Nastia Liukin failed to make the team. I was really excited to watch one of our former Bruins, Anna Li, sneak onto the team in the alternate spot. Her bar routine is one of the most difficult in the world.

Go Bruins!