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Glorious day!

It was so, so lovely out yesterday, and as luck would have it, my friends wanted to do some adventuring.

Sara and Eli, pictured below, and I walked over the bridge to East Providence (in fact, a different city from Providence proper), and explored down by the river.

On the bridge:

We found an old railway car:

Sara investigated further:

And I partially got over my fear of falling from rickety-looking structures that are in fact quite stable:

And then we had a picnic.

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Milo!

Introducing… Milo the Wonder Cat! He’s full of LOVE and CUDDLES and JOY! He’s Sara the Hoff’s cat, but since we live together, he is sort of my cat!

Nostalgi-blog

I do apologize for this blog’s rapid transformation from food-fiber-art into sentimental nonsense.

That said, in relation to my med school applications, holy crap. I have submitted 13 secondaries out of 15 schools applied to: one school hasn’t sent me a secondary (yet?) and another is not a rolling-admissions deal so I’m taking my time. My advising committee letter has been submitted to the application service, as have two character letters requested by some schools. 13 out of 15 applications are totally, completely done, and I can do nothing more until I am offered an interview (or not). I am left to wait and think positively and hope that not too many people will ask about my status.

Right now, it feels a bit to me like the generations are shifting- we adolescents are becoming real live “young adults,” our parents are approaching retirement age. I think two things cemented this for me: meeting the child (who is six months old and super cute) of a young woman I grew up with, and hearing from one of my best friends that she already has a job offer post-graduation. By attending medical school right after college, I suppose I’m slowing my entry into the “real world.” I can’t wait, though- I’ve got a lot of apprehension and excitement, and I have no idea where I’ll be living this time next year: NYC, Boston, Chicago, Ann Arbor, D.C., Atlanta, Philly, Tampa, Tallahassee, Gainesville, Orlando or Miami.

This, of course, reminds me of a song I loved in high school, by Motion City Soundtrack, a band to which my friend Kyra and I did a lot of jamming in the car on the way to school:

The future freaks me out.

But in a good way.

Okay, go!

So I’ve been a very bad music-appreciator this summer. WBRU, our college radio station, has been putting on a free concert series all summer and I only went to the big name show, OK GO. Of course, it is acceptable to go to said show because said band is FUCKING AWESOME, but I feel bad for not discovering some new music this summer.

The evening began with making wontons (again) with Sara, at my house for some reason I don’t remember. We then proceeded to kidnap my friend Kristyn on the way downtown, stopped at the mall for a little Bed, Bath, and Beyond-ing, and then hit up the concert.

As the lead singer mentioned, it was possibly the most awkward setup for a rock concert ever. The band was down on a stage at the front and the standing/seating area was a sharply sloped hill.

Like looking down into a pit.

Luckily, the awkward arrangement of humans did not prevent the music from being great, although I was mildly concerned that for the first half of the concert no one was dancing.

Don’t you worry, rocking occurred.

Eventually people got more into it after they played “Here it Goes Again,” probably their most recognizable song:

P.S. you should probably watch more OK GO videos because they are all equally or more badass.

There was a bit of misguided handbell-playing, some super cute allowing-of-little-kid-to-strum-the-guitar, and overall, you know, rawk.

Music was concurrent with attempts to find a variety of different people by text message triangulation, which only partly worked. Music was followed by hanging out at Eli’s house with his friends visiting from home. Good night all round.

Knitting update

My sweater is coming along quite well, I think. I’ve finished the back and one of the front sides, and tonight at the stitch and bitch I’ll hopefully finish the second sock-equivalent’s worth of knitting, and also the other front piece. Observe:

Also pictured: a lone headphone. Oops.

The fronts are narrow because a wide ribbed trim is added on after seaming. I think I like the fact that the sweater is seamed- I did the largest piece first and it’s good to have milestones.

Now I’ve got to wind another ball of the yarn and head over to knitting.

Science fiction, double feature.

Today I was not annoyed to be running errands.

Video store, bank, post office, campus mailbox, computer cluster, advisor, library, all while carrying a bag full of, among other things, my rather heavy Book o’ Med School Requirements for stop 5, during which I completed the first of many secondary applications.

Why?

Because this is what today looked like:

University Hall

Van Wickle Gates and the Hay

Sunny, and warm-but-not-hot. Gorgeous blue sky. Perfection.

After my joyous time spent running errands (10:30-3), I went down to Providence Place for traditional Tuesday festivities- this time back-to-back action-packed showings of Inception (again) and Salt.

So you all know how I feel about Inception- it’s saying something that a 2.5-hour-long movie can hold my attention even though I’d seen it a week before, even on 5.5 hours of sleep.

Salt, you say, is not science fiction. Well, do you KNOW what an fMRI is? THAT’S NOT IT! Still, an entertaining movie, with a bit of a plot hole at the end, in my opinion: highlight below for spoiler.

Wouldn’t the President rat on the bad FBI dude the second he woke up?

Much badassery and sweet disguises, Macgyver-ed gadgets and Russian intrigue. So good stuff.

Flora and fauna, a contrast

I grew up here:

Home sweet home.

Note the palm trees, cycads, birds of paradise, top of head of our old dog Yogi, and house with stucco. That’s South Florida- few houses are taller than one story, and plants are lush and tropical.

On may way to campus to run errands today, it was gorgeous out, and on my walk I noticed just how different life is here:

Note the 3-story building with basement (not pictured), wooden siding, and Mansard roof.

For one, most houses here were built in the 1800s, whereas my house in Florida was built in 1998. The wooden siding and basement in the apartment I live in would be mildewed and full of water, respectively, if they existed in my Florida home, which is exactly  6 feet above sea level.

Observe the flora of my block:

Hydrangeas, Black-eyed Susans, Amaryllis… I think.

None of these grow in Florida. In fact, the only flowering plant I’ve seen in both places:

Yeah, didn’t even notice the bumblebee in this one.

My backyard in Florida offers up a number of delightful creatures, from the Jesus lizard (it walks on water, e.g., our pool), to the poisonous/hallucinogenic Bufo toad (don’t lick), to the good ol’ gator (well, not IN my backyard, but NEAR it).

Up here, wildlife sightings include cuddly bunnies, a few skunks, the occasional wild turkey, and today, this charming fellow:

He’s an American Goldfinch. The site I linked is very handy for figuring out what bird you just saw.

This guy is the state bird of New Jersey, Iowa and Washington. Basically they hang out all over America, and even winter in Florida. For some reason, the state bird of Florida is the mockingbird (or lame-ass brown ugly bird, its scientific name), not the little green parrot, which as far as I can tell is some type of Amazon parrot, which you can see in flocks in South Florida and are much more exciting.

Unfortunately, like many of the more exciting species in Florida, the parrots, like the toads and lizards mentioned above, are invasive, as are some plant species such as the melaleuca tree. I can only hope this happens less often now, but it was common practice in the 19th and early 20th centuries to introduce a new species to get rid of a native “pest,” to hunt for sport, or in the case of melaleuca trees, to help drain the Everglades. Unfortunately, since these new species tend not to have natural predators in their new habitat, fucked up shit goes down. Melaleuca trees, besides assisting in destroying the habitats of other animals and plants, are incredibly hard to kill and are now classified as a noxious weed. Rabbits, introduced to Australia for hunting, do fun stuff like killing native plants and contributing to soil erosion.

Moral of the story? Plants and animals are cool, except when they fuck everything up because stupid humans decided to put them were they don’t belong. Hooray!