Labs for a biology major can take up a huge chunk of your time, not including senior thesis research. However, once in a while, a lab can be pretty interesting and revolting at the same time, which most “real” science tends to be. For microbiology, we are currently learning about microbial growth and plate inoculations, confusing basics that are the foundation of the rest of the semester. To practice this talent in the real world, we then had to choose a place that would contain interesting and hopefully new bacteria, immediately leading me to my friend’s dorm.
The Vista is one of the nicest dorms on campus; it is also the most expensive. The apartment style atmosphere is nice, but, unlike the other dorms, there is no one keeping it clean but the individuals living there. Pretty similar to the real world, except not everyone is prepared for that adjustment. When dorming, you will get stuck with roommates who do not believe they need to contribute and help clean, most likely boys. A nice living room then becomes cluttered and filled with some sort of man-stink that the residents of that dorm somehow don’t notice. If I was to discover some new species anywhere, it would be this room.
Most of this process involves waiting, as bacteria can only grow so fast. After opening the petri dishes, I had to wait ten minutes to ensure that they caught something from the air. After that, they had to wait in the incubator to make sure the microorganisms had a healthy temperature to grow with. Results are not yet complete, but, after a week, enough microorganisms were found to scientifically prove that place needs to be cleaned. Whatever I found in the living room was secluded only to that room, as my partner did one of their bathrooms and her plates were relatively spotless for now. More research needs to be done, but one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, literally.
This weekend was the first time ,since moving out to California, that I was able to see some friends from back home. My friend Pilar, who attends college twenty minutes away from La Verne, visited me Thursday evening. After showing her around the university, she and I both headed on the Metrolink Friday morning to the LA Union Station, where we planned to meet Kevin, another friend, who was on his way to Stockton for college. The three of us spent the morning together walking around downtown LA, stopping at some of the well-known tourist destinations.
We first stopped at Olvera street. Granted, we were out pretty early, so none of the stores at Olvera street were actually open. However, the area was beautiful nonetheless. The street, even when it’s closed, still has so much life to it. The stands were all painted different colors, and there were even pigeons resting peacefully on some of them.
After walking through Olvera street, we all grabbed breakfast at the Los Angeles mall. By the time we finished breakfast, it was time for Kevin to head back to LAX to catch his flight to Stockton. Pilar and I walked with Kevin back to the LA Union Station, said our goodbyes, and spent the rest of the day exploring. We visited China town, which was just a few blocks from Olvera street. I’d say the highlight of China town was seeing all of the little toy stores. Some of the stores sold actual turtles, little ones, all of which Pilar and I thought were adorable.
Once we walked through China town, Pilar and I decided to grab lunch at Little Tokyo. Little Tokyo was a bit further away, but it was absolutely worth the walk; the area was beautiful, from the cultural architecture to the ambiance of the shops—it really did remind me of Japan.
After lunch, Pilar and I found ourselves at LA’s newest park, Grand Park. It was a large, spacious, and well-kept park with bubblegum pink benches everywhere. The view of city hall was incredible, so Pilar and I decided to take a few pictures there. It was an amazing way to end our day in downtown LA.
It was so nice to catch up with old friends from back home. Familiar faces bring back familiar fun, and I’m so glad to have spent the entire day with them. This definitely won’t be the last time; I feel motivated, now more than ever, to reconnect with friends from back home who are also going through their high school to college transition here in California.
Now for your question of the day! Ready for it? Here you go:
Where’s your favorite tourist destination in LA?
So far, I’d have to say mine was the Grand Park. I could literally spend hours there. Who knows, maybe I’ll find another great tourist spot when I explore more of LA. (:
Feel free to leave a comment in the comment box down below. See you next week my lovely readers!
Sorority recruitment — two words that either incite excitement or dread. For me, it is dread. Don’t get me wrong, I love recruiting quality women who I can call sisters, but the entire weekend is dreadfully long and is filled with awkward conversations, crying and tons of coffee.
Friday I had class during half of the parties, and then booked it to the Sheraton (just down the street from campus) for the rest of the events. Our room had adorable decorations and my sisters were dressed in matching yellow and white with flower crowns. Once I arrived I hardly had time to catch my breath before the next group of women walked through our doors and we were welcoming them in!
The next day was the longest, mostly because we were there from noon to 9 p.m. At this point we all began to make closer connections and had much better (or sometimes worse) conversations with the women going through recruitment. Saturday’s theme was The Great Gatsby and we introduced our philanthropy, the Phi Sigma Sigma Foundation which benefits school and college readiness, and is partnered with Kids in Need and Practice Makes Perfect.
Sunday morning is called “pref” and it is the final party before deciding who gets a bid or not. By that time, all of my sisters — including myself — had women we were attached to and wanted to make as sisters. They were women who showed character, influence on campus and in the community, leadership potential and who had that down-to-earth Phi Sig persona.
Fast forward to reveal later that night… The Campus Center ballroom buzzed with sorority girls in “bid day” outfits singing their cheers, getting ready to welcome their new sisters. The nerves and excitement felt by everyone in the room overwhelmed all other feelings and I couldn’t help but be anxious. But finally, after a long weekend of recruitment and months of recruitment practice, Phi Sigma Sigma has 25 new members!
…and I couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome my legacy, my blood sister and now sorority sister to Phi Sig!
WELCOME CLASS OF SPRING 2015!
Until next time.
Basketball has been a part of my life since I was five years old and since then, I have grown to love the sport even more. I played basketball in middle school and it has become one of my favorite pastimes. Throughout high school, I learned even more about the sport and I was the one girl who knew a great deal of information about anything in the NBA. This has made basketball an even bigger part of my life although I don’t play anymore. Being at the University of La Verne, I am still known as the girl who knows all of the details about the sport. My favorite teams are the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Chicago Bulls while Kevin Durant is my favorite player.
I have gotten to know a little bit more about college basketball this year and I am in full support of our school’s men’s and women’s basketball teams.
This past weekend was a special weekend for the women in their Senior Night on Saturday. The team honored its seniors, Tiffany Hicks, JJ Weaver, and Ricki Murakami. The team also honored junior, Jasmine Bush as she is hanging up her jersey due to injury. Bush has had concussion injuries that have prohibited her from playing for the past two years. The ceremony before the game was very special and the players will be missed when they leave.
Seniors Hicks and Murakami put up a combined 14 points in the game but the team fell to Redlands.
Scores from the Night:
Women’s Basketball v. Redlands
Men’s Basketball v. Redlands
It’s been eight weeks since I returned from England and a semester of studying abroad, but it feels longer. Transitioning back into La Verne mode has been difficult and leaves me missing my adopted country more and more… And although those feelings will never quite disappear, I am practicing the art of being present here in this moment. It took all of JanTerm and half of February to realize that presence is necessary to enjoy this semester, so I’m beginning to slow down and take time to enjoy the people and natural beauty I am surrounded by. It is too easy to be consumed by class, homework, clubs, work and other responsibilities, but (after my time abroad) I’ve realized that none of those things are important if you are not happy.
In order to fully enjoy the time I have remaining at the University of La Verne (and probably California), I have spent more time in deep conversations with my sorority sisters, friends and roommate, and have taken the time to try new things and explore old and new places.
I am currently in love with Auggie’s and A La Minute in Claremont Village. The coffee shop and ice cream shop share the same space and work closely together in creating amazing tastes and atmosphere! If you’re a coffee snob or want to watch your ice-cream be frozen before your eyes, check out this cool spot.
Another good place to dive deep into conversation (if your lungs can handle it) is the Claremont Loop — a five mile hike in the hills of the city it’s named after. My roommate and I enjoy carving out the two hours it takes to complete the loop for some much needed exercise and fresh air. Fun fact: our friendship started on this loop! We were freshmen living on the same floor in Oaks and decided to try it out. Fast forward two years and we are now best friends because we took the time to foster our friendship during that dedicated time.
Dwelling over my adventure in England is not worth losing the love I have for my major, my friends and my sorority. So until I return to the country that has captured my heart, I will put my focus on being present in this moment and place.
Until next time.
xxx (<— British way to end a message… with kisses!)