- school started more than a week ago. can’t say that i’m excited to be back from vacation but at least i’m taking some fascinating classes including international development, peace/nonviolence in global society, and a class entitled “the CIA”. three of my other classes (natural hazards, earth’s natural environment, and introduction to physical geography) are basically teaching the same thing. i’ve literally heard climate change, plate techtonics, and forest fires in all three, in one day.
- i received an [unpaid] intern position with the massey herbarium in virginia tech’s biology department. my work is a mix of archival and mapping responsibilities, two areas that relate to my previous smithsonian internships.
- also working with the state department again as a virtual student foreign service intern.
- started teaching last friday! met my new nine or so freshmen and introduced them to undergraduate research.
- i have my own room! my dorm is, in my opinion, situated in the best location on campus: thirty seconds from two out of the three dining halls on campus and behind the academic buildings.
I’m currently blogging whilst watching South Korea’s Dancing with the Stars from a hotel in Incheon, South Korea! I am studying abroad at Kangwon National University on a full scholarship to participate in their Forest Summer Program from 23 JUN to 14 JUL thanks to Professor Choi, former visiting professor at Virginia Tech. I will be joining two other Hokies along with students from China, and Malaysia to take courses in Forest Management and Resources, Landscape Architecture, Paper Engineering, and of course, the Korean language, just to name a few. We’re also going to participate in fieldwork at Nami Island and the Korean National Arbortum. This is my first study abroad trip and I’m glad it’s a country that’s not traditionally known as a “Top Study Abroad” destination!
- I often daydream of the times she vied to pay for her ride whenever my siblings and I would pick her up to develop her photos or shop around at K-Mart, the taste of her weird brands of Mexican or Asian candy from her purse, and even the smell her makeup and perfume from her Filipino kisses (sniffs?).
- Her room at my aunts house is used primarily for storage but her bed, clothes, photos, books, and jewelry are still in place. I’ll slowly open the door and walk in hoping she’d be taking a midday nap, just like I used to do when she was still alive. She would tell my siblings and me stories of when she cared for her siblings, married my grandpa, had kids, and yet somehow always ended with how her mom died when her little brother was born, and how she had to learn to grow up.