Category: Living

Living at UIC: res halls (dorms), food, getting around campus.

Freshman Pics ONLY!!

And start!!! ^_^

My friends and I recently got accepted to UIC for Fall 2007. Here's us posing fun!!

 

My very first night in my residence hall, PSR. Hanging out with some new residents I just met.

 

I'm not excited to say this, but this picture was taken while ditching my first college class. We went to Millennium Park.

 

I joined the intramural volleyball team for PSR. Both my RA back then. We were called Cheese-It

 

Class reunion!! One of my best friends in middle school, I found him at UIC and we started hanging out.

LAS 110: City Exploration. My ground freshman year where we checked out Lincoln Square.

 

Hanging out with floormates. We went to see "Phantom of the Opera" at the Cadillac Theater

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TOPIC NEXT WEEK: Sophomore (I matured a lot) pictures and update!

ANSWER FOR LAST WEEK: My most embarrassing moment when I was a freshman was when my roommate locked me out of the room after I took a shower, with no clothes =(

 QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What’s happened to Chicago weather?

No problem Mon! ( yes its mon, Jamaican for man lol)


This one is for you Ms. Geddes; I felt it necessary to start the article off with a simple reminder of why life is good.


Looking at this picture it’s hard to believe that they have grown up so fast already. I remember walking out of the hospital with my nephew when he was born now he is seven years old and almost taller than I am. In addition, my nieces are growing up into wonderful young woman and to be honest I’m a bit scared. I am scared mostly because of then talking to boys when they get older, so to offset the moment I have been bribing them with whatever they want so that no other guy can impress them when they get older. (lol I know I know, it’s wrong yes but when you have precious gifts in your life like these three you will do anything to protect them). The bottom line is that this picture makes me feel old.

This woman is the love of my life. My mother and papa are the best parents in the world. Call me bias but that’s the truth. Thanks mom for being there for me whether I was good or bad. You just can’t find mothers like this one “now a days”. I think God stop making this model.

This week has been one of great challenge for me, I am glad the week is over. Looking at these pictures helps me to relax and focus on what’s important in life. I implore you, if you have the time search and find what your inspiration(s) is/are. Finding this will allow you to navigate the hard times that come up in your life. A wise person once told me “don’t wait on motivation it’s not going to come”. At fist i was a bit offended but then I realized he was right. Motivation is something you the individual create not something that just hit you one day. So find what motivates you and what makes you feel at ease.

Top 5: UIC Pickup Lines of Love~

Hey UIC– are you ready for love??

The week after Valentine’s Day invites to the campus the most creative pick-up lines I’ve heard. But before we get started I have a few updates; first I’m going to release a small video that I think you guys will like. It’ll be released in a few weeks since it will be recorded next week during JST Open Mic Night. Second, supervising my housing staff has been awesome. RA/PM Selection Letters will be sent out soon. And lastly, I’ll give you guys a sneak peak on next week’s article:

THE FRESHMAN FLASHBACK!

Yes! Next week’s article will be my Freshman Flashback. Nothing but pictures and my freshman 15. So anyways, here’s the long awaited article…

**Top 5: College Pickup Lines- UIC Edition**

1.) “I heard the new section of the library was called the IDEAL Commons” (–No it isn’t, its the IDEA Commons!!) “Well, it becomes IDEAL when I’m with you.”

2.) “Let me take you to the quad– and teach about your four corners”

3.) “Girl, let’s head to BSB and stay lost in this moment”

4.) “Is anyone special sitting here?” (Gestures her to sit– “Not just anyone”…)

5.) Ready for the most romantic date ever?
– First, we’re gonna start out with a little bowling
– Then a five star dinner at Inner. Appetizers by Subway, burger and fries by Wendy’s, then ice cream at Baskin’ Robbins.
– A casual walk after as we shop under the sunlight of the bookstore.
–”Maybe” if we feel lucky, head to the Halsted Street Station for the home run, if you know what I mean.

^All of that is located in one building, Student Center East.

Stay tuned in for next week!
-Darren

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TOPIC NEXT WEEK: The Freshman Flashback (Pictures Everywhere! Yes I’ll even show a couple of the embarrassing ones)

ANSWER FOR LAST WEEK: ”I’d like to get my basilisk into your chamber of secrets.”

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What is your most embarrassing moment as a freshman?

Top Secret Discounts for UIC Student

UIC! FLAMES!

Weather has been amazing– no snow in Chicago. Which makes me wonder if karma is going to hit soon. But anyways, while walking to class I think how we can apply our rainfall simulator lab to actual conditions right now, ironically. This past lab, we’ve been monitoring the ground water flow and discharge rate with respect to the amount of time and volume of rainfall. The results were also affected by the slope of the gradient.

CME 311: Water Resources (Rainfall Simulator)

 Top 5: Secret Discounts for UIC Students

1.) AMC Movie Theater Ticket Discounts
Compared to the usual price of $10. Student Centers sells silver tickets for $6.75 and gold tickets for $7.75. Throughout watching movies in my college years, these dollars add up.

2.) U-Pass/CTA Bus Pass
Especially saves a ton load of money for commuter students, the U-Pass is offered to all full time students and at a slight extra cost for part-time. If you’re looking for a CTA Bus Pass, those are offered at discount for any type.

3.) Restaurant Discounts near Campus
A lot of restaurants around UIC offer Student Discounts, but double check if you have to “eat-in” or “carryout” for it to be applicable. (i.e. Lucky’s, Ichiban, Joy Yee’s, Sarpino).

4.) Free Things (not really a discount)
So if students show their UIC Student ID, they can also get free things around campus. For example they can get a free can of pop with every order at Jim’s, or show up at a UIC Flames Game and get free items (i.e. scarf, snuggie)

5.) Programming Discounts
For residents in Campus Housing, programming can get discounts to ticketed events, such as Second City, Comedy Sportz. Also anything that would involve food can be brought by programming to residents, and it would essentially be “free food.”

Post whatever discounts you know of too!
-Darren

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TOPIC FOR NEXT WEEK: “Top 5: UIC Pickup Lines I’ve Heard on Campus”

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What’s the cheesiest pickup line you’ve heard?

ANSWER FOR LAST WEEK: My favorite restaurant, right now, would be Lucky’s =)

 

Fun, Tedium, or Misery: Time Flies Regardless

Is it just me or does time keep passing faster and faster?  Chalk it up to a quarter-life crisis (that’s right, I’m assuming I’ll live to be 100), but I can’t help but feel that the epiphany I’d heard so many others articulate regarding the increasingly fleeting nature of time, is finally dawning on me.  I’m reticent to say it, but I think I’m getting old.  Okay, okay, let’s not go crazy, I’m getting older… that’s right, that wonderful little suffix makes everything a little bit more palatable.

Really though, I look back on events that don’t seem so long ago in my memory only to realize that high school was actually A LONG TIME AGO.  Then I look back on my years in undergrad and realize – all with increasing anxiety, mind you – that that too was A LONG TIME AGO.  In fact, if you asked me this very moment what the first two years of medical school were like, I’d have a hard time articulating it.  Why? Clearly it’s because my noggin’ isn’t quite the same with the ravages of age (maybe I’m being a little melodramatic here).  But when I sat down the other day and actually thought it out, I came to the realization that these days I find myself increasingly absorbed in what I’m doing.  In other words, I think just maybe this time warp is a natural part of the transition from school to career.

Granted, medical training is a unique hybrid between these two entities, with the particular stage I find myself in serving as little more that a glorified limbo between education proper and burgeoning clinical competency.  That said, I am very much still in school, and for all intents and purposes will be in perpetuity (the joke is that in medicine the light at the end of the tunnel is actually an oncoming train).  But what has come with this academic year, in particular, has been an introduction to the day-to-day life of a physician, full of less-than-ideal schedules (6 days on, 1 day off), exhaustion, and responsibilities unlike any I’ve had to take on before.  All in all, if I thought I was busy at any point prior in my life, I was sorely mistaken.  My life this year is defined by the rotation I’m on at any given point, with everything, my emotional state, sleep habits, and social life (this aspect has taken the biggest hit) following suit.  Now granted, at least part of this is attributable to the insular environment of a hospital itself—let’s be real, with regards to time, a hospital floor is just about as disorienting as a Las Vegas casino.  And when Saturday and Sunday become nothing more than potential workdays, the very structure of the 7-day week loses significance as well, making the weeks and months blend together seamlessly.

But beyond this is the fact that the work itself is enveloping, the way any day-to-day, goal-oriented work can be.  Seeing patients from admission, through their plan of care, all the way to discharge offers a never-ending list of tasks to be accomplished, which seems, above all else, to be the driving force behind this speeding of time.  There never seem to be enough hours in a day to get all the orders written, consults managed, and topics researched, just as there never seem to be enough days in the week when insurance companies are pushing to get a patient discharged and your treatment plan requires more time.  Constantly-moving deadlines like these keep time flying at such an astonishing pace.

But, being human, we get used to it in the same way we get used to pretty much everything.  What was initially overwhelming becomes the norm; we habituate.  And this habituation seems to be the reason for the confusion when we finally pause for second, take a step back, and wonder where the hell all the time went.

So what do I make of all this?  Well, to hearken back to the early days of Facebook (there’s an epiphany for you: it’s been around for over 7 years now) “it’s complicated.”  While there is absolutely something to be said for letting your work or other aspects of your life consume you – think of the physicians, artists, economists, etc  that have changed the world thanks to their dedication – I shudder to think that this is all there is to look forward to.  It may be easy to sink into the complacency of quotidian tasks such that time begins to fly by unnoticed, but if it means living a life unfulfilled, then what’s the point?  So my new goal is to take a step back more often, and consciously make an effort to separate myself from my education/work to appreciate other aspects of my life (people, experiences, etc) that have contributed to the person I am, such that I don’t lose them as time keeps accelerating.  Nothing will stop the years from coming, but when everything else seems to be a blur, I’m hoping that this will at least give me a few moments of clarity.

Looking Ahead

This whole week has been blue for me. I mean, it’s not like anything more awful happened, but I just don’t feel motivated at school to do anything spectacular. I think it will take a couple of years to feel “okay” or arguably happy for the things I’m doing to be satisfactory, and I know my grandfather wouldn’t want me to be hung up on spending my thoughts of him each night trying to convince myself I’ll be fine. There’s no point in lingering for too long, but I’m sure anyone who has ever felt loss knows it’s not easy…heck I bet you still think about them to this day.

Next week and the week after is going to consist of exam after exam. I’m spending most of my weekends most likely here instead of going home like I did when I went to visit my grandpa. I asked my parents to come visit me over the weekend so we can eat in Chinatown and hopefully they’ll bring my grandmother. She’s still going to live in the same place where she was with my grandpa. I don’t know why she wants to stay there when that whole place has my grandpa’s presence everywhere, which could be comforting in some ways but would be make me cry more knowing he’s not there…

I’ve been working out a lot more frequently (kind of)! The UIC recreation center is not that close to MRH so I am really unmotivated to walk over but ever since I joined my friend’s basketball co-ed intramural team…I feel more motivated! It’s really fun to be a part of a team again (yes, I used to play). I am totally out of shape but it feels so good to get my body moving again! Sitting and listening to my professor in my nutrition and metabolism class is intense because we always talk about inflammation and how it’s basically the cause of all of our problems…and that exercise is a great anti-inflammatory response! My nutrition and physical activity class is motivating too…only because everyone there wants to be a sport dietician or is a fitness trainer so I look like such a lazy pants when I spend most of my time studying. It’s so hard to be healthy without the balance of nutrition AND physical activity.

Microbiology lecture and lab have been okay. We started our “Unknown Bacteria” project in lab and it’s worth 200 points (regular lab reports aren’t worth any points so my grade is basically this one giant lab report for the whole semester and a lab practical at the end). Organic chemistry II…don’t even get me started! I went to the review and I have so much studying to do for the exam. It’s only on two chapters, but one of the chapters has to do with reading spectroscopy graphs that seem completely pointless unless you’re in organic chemistry lab, which I’m not. I basically have to look at a graph, maybe do some calculations, and draw the organic molecule. Wish me luck…

My whole family feels kind of the same. I went to work out with my cousin who also goes to UIC (we don’t see each other much because we’re so busy) and she’s got even more exams than I do in addition to preparing for her occupational therapy application. Can you believe there are only five schools in the Chicagoland area for OT? I’m glad there are more options for medical school, although the competition is probably just the same. I don’t even want to think about the MCAT and medical school applications until next year! We’re all just piling on stress over stress.

Research has been going well, although I should really start writing my grant! There’s an Honors College grant available that I want to apply for so I can help my lab out with money. Research is ridiculously expensive, and they always give you so little so you really have to be careful not to waste materials. Crud. I also need to apply for the UIC scholarships! All of the deadlines are next week so I better get on that ASAP so I don’t miss out on those opportunities. I was a recipient of the Association Award from SAUIC and that helped out a lot with paying for my tuition. There’s so much going on I’ll get dizzy just thinking about them.

On top of this stuff, I’ve got the SFP Health Activism Committee to run. Most of the committee members have a “co-” partner in crime so they can split the work, but I didn’t run with one so I have to organize meetings and rent rooms all by myself and make agendas and get people interested…and e-mail schools (I have had one school reply so I hope we can go there). I’m not complaining because this is what I signed up for to do, and I do enjoy it because it gives me a chance to be a leader. I don’t think many students have those opportunities unless they seek it, but even some organizations don’t work out like that. I don’t see the point of running with someone for the same position because the point of being a leader is to take on responsibilities for yourself and making time for it.

The main reason we have so many co-chairs is because each of them want to be a leader, but they are busy so they can’t commit their whole time and effort as they would like to. They can only do half, which is okay but I think the group would be more efficient with one person as the designated treasurer or vice-president etc. It’s hard to communicate when there are so many people trying to lead and we all have different ideas that need time to take into consideration.

Anyway, sorry for no pictures. Well, okay here’s one photo you might enjoy.

Sushi by the UIC Marketplace

On UIC west campus, I treat myself to some sushi made at the UIC Marketplace (it's legit and delicious) before I go to work or research.

There are more things to say, as usual, but I think this is good…OH. Wait, one more thing. Summer…does anyone have any exciting summer plans yet? I need to hurry up and attend a study abroad “first steps” session so I can organize my thoughts and application if I want to do this one traditional Chinese medicine program in Kunming, China. My friend told me she’s going to a medicine program in Copenhagen and that the priority deadline for that is soon! I hope the program I want doesn’t want the application too fast, but I shouldn’t wait to find out…otherwise I might go to Taiwan and teach English to little kids in the rural areas, which I’ve been wanting to do for some time. There’s always summer school or studying for the MCAT too…but who wants to waste their possible last summer doing that? Mayans and their predictions…

To be honest, I wouldn’t mind if the world ended at the same point. It’s sad to slowly watch people leave your life when their time is up. I don’t like that feeling that “someone’s next.” But um, I don’t believe in the whole Mayan thing so eh. Just live your life to fullest for this year…and eat everything you want before going on a diet, just in case you regret not eating that special and tasty treat you love when the world ends. That would be sad…

Simpler times

Home is where the heart is and well my heart was definitely left in Jamaica. My country is one of the most unique places I have ever had the chance to live in. It is a paradise; whenever I am there my mind is at peace. No worries about bills or danger or even severe weather. Jamaica is my safe haven and I intend to bring back the knowledge I obtain through UIC to better serve my people back. The country is filled with vast resources that in the hands of the right people can be allocated to help the country grow. I tend to laugh when people demean my country due cultural ignorance, little do they know that even though the country is poor the people are happy. Jamaicans are by far some of the happiest people on earth I have ever known. I guess the strangest question I have ever received was “oh do you guys wear cloths in Jamaica?” On one hand I was aghast to know that someone actually had the capacity or no capacity for that matter to conceptualize the fact that Jamaicans might not have worn cloths. And on the other hand I credit this misconception to the vast media misinformation.

Now am I saying Jamaica is the safest place in the word? No, not so much but the way of life and what it means to share and love one another is greater than what you would find in most industrialized nations. Let’s just be clear about one thing, I love America, its freedom, its people, its unique cultures and ideas, and just as much as there is bad publicity about America around the world so it is with Jamaica. The island itself is beautiful, however it is the hearts and minds of those who choose to inhabit it that makes it what it really is. I often dream of business strategies that would allow Jamaica to have cross cultural exchanges with other nations so as to ensure the proper avenue for communications with the country. I know it’s a broad and big dream, but like I always say you can change the world just by changing the life of one individual for the betterment of mankind. By my major having a focus on marketing more specifically with a sub focus on international business, I often think of ways I can incorporate the things I am now learning in my IDS, Management , Accounting and Finance classes to develop a import business, one that would benefit non-profits here in the United States and those in Jamaica.

My business will allow all of my customers to taste, feel, see or smell (lol, the good ones) a part of Jamaica without ever setting foot in the country. Iol, despite the fact that this idea is still in its conception phase I have high hopes for the outcomes for it. I am almost certain that with the resources and knowledge that’s being provided here at UIC I will be able to get the ball rolling by the time I graduate. And just a side note, I would like to say thank you to all UIC staff members from the janitors to the president, no matter what your role is it is an integral part of what makes this university function and because of your hard work “hopefully” I will be able to see my ideas come forth. To all who can go to Jamaica don’t hesitate, head on over and have some fun soak up some sun!

The sweet life

sunset by my home

My niece, she is the reason why ever day is a good day for me

“Tips to Doing Laundry in UIC”

College laundry rooms can be intimidating. So here’s my step-by-step guide on “Tips to Doing Laundry in UIC.”

Tip #1.) “It’s time to do laundry when I run out of boxers/socks”

Assess the amount of laundry you have-- Then determine how many washers you need

Tip #2.) See which laundry rooms have open washers. (There’s peak hours in college for laundry time).

Visit www.laundryview.com for a live update on UIC Housing's washers and dryers.

 Tip #3.) Clean out the lint!!!!

Seeing lint on your laundry is pretty disgusting.

 Tip #4.) In addition to using detergent, use softer! It makes your clothes less “static” and smell amazing. 

My friend just learned about fabric softener. Now he can touch metal things without getting "static shock"

Tip #5.) Bring your I-Card down!

Swipe and punch the number of your machine. Laundry is free in Campus Housing! =)

And that’s how we do laundry here at UIC! Next week’s article will be about “Top Secret Discounts for UIC Students.”

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TOPIC FOR NEXT WEEK: Top Secret Discounts for UIC Students

ANSWER FOR LAST WEEK:  Of course Bulls! I also think the Lakers, Celtics, 76ers, Thunder, Heat, Pacers, and Mavericks.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Your favorite restaurant around UIC?

Living the Dream

“The brick walls are not there to keep us out; the brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something.” -Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture 

Let me tell you, college is challenging.  Those brick walls they place, it didn’t occur to me that I would be hurling through obstacles with sleepless nights to get it. Professors drove me hard and will keep pushing me until I fall. But the lesson was not that I can fail, but to get back up and try harder.

Friends from Bolingbrook that stuck with me through college =)

I’m going to paint a picture for you “Top 3 Things: Big Dreams (you might want to think about) right after college”

1. Your first “real world” job
Find a job that you love and makes good money. Get an internship for that job before you graduate. One of the most important things in post-graduate world. If you’re interested in graduate school, be sure to research it before you graduate. There are companies out there that offer tuition assistance to employers who pursue graduate school

2. Your first “real place”
My dream is that I want to have my own apartment. Starting from scratch– I can say that I truly earned everything in my home/bachelor’s pad. I would love to visit IKEA and decorate my place just like it.

3. Your first “real car”
Nothing compares to the feeling of getting up for work to a job you love, and seeing your car in the morning. It’s like a symbol of what you have achieved. Go research a car you love and as is also within budget

All in all, it’s going to be a busy weekend. RA/PM Interviews will start and I need to get my suit and interview applicants.

Good luck to all that applied!
-Darren out

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TOPIC NEXT WEEK: “How to Properly Do Laundry in College”

ANSWER FROM LAST WEEK: My future dream in ten years would be to have my own place and job and travel the world.

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Who do you think is going to make the playoffs in the NBA?

My Disguise – 安息爺爺

I’d say I’m skilled in many things, but only because I’ve worked hard to obtain those skills. There are a few skills that I’ve acquired that I don’t think I’ve worked hard to obtain, but perhaps were molded through experience. One classic example I point out is my weight, and how I may look like I’m 120 (or thinner, for those who are so kind), but you’d be surprised how much I actually weigh if I step on a scale. Claim it what you will, muscle mass or whatever – but I’ve got a great mask.

Now, this post isn’t going to be about how to lose weight or stay healthy (although if you were interested in that, attend one of SFP’s HAC training sessions Tuesdays and Thursdays at 5pm in the Honors College – look at the website for solid dates). I wish it were that easy to do. I was debating if I was going to write about a certain thing that happened to me and my family, and I decided that it’s very relevant to living or adjusting to college life.

The skill that I’m going to talk about is my skill to act like nothing is wrong. I think a lot of people have those moments, when something tragic happens and they will cry about it until they realize there’s no use in crying but moving on, especially if there is nothing you can do. Well, my moment probably lasted a mere half hour before I knew I had to stop and focus back to school. It was a Wednesday, and I had my regular morning with microbiology lecture and lab. I went back to my dorm to have lunch and study organic chemistry for a quiz that was in two hours, but I only had an hour because I was going to tutor at the writing center for an hour first. On top of that I had nutrition from 3:45pm-5:00pm so it was going to be a long day.

Well, studying wasn’t very effective, and I called the director of the writing center to tell him I couldn’t go. Nutrition was brutal because I couldn’t focus and just wanted to leave and cry in my dorm for a few hours. If you haven’t guessed yet, my grandfather passed away that Wednesday early afternoon. My mother texted me “Ye ye pass away in peace” and I immediately went from normal to wreck, but I couldn’t keep it up for long since I had to tutor, take a quiz, and attend a lecture before I’d have time to myself…so I only cried for a few minutes before I slapped myself on forced focus mode and did my best to throw my energy into school. I feel bad for not tutoring that day, but I don’t think the writer would come back to the center if I just suddenly cried in front of them. The organic chemistry quiz was crazy hard, but I’ll just hope for the best. The nutrition lecture was interesting as my professor was explaining how cholesterol didn’t cause heart disease, but then I got sad about thinking of the cancer that took my grandpa’s life. I texted my brother, and he just told me to hold my mourning for the funeral.

I’ve never lost anyone before. I mean, I’ve lost really close friends and those were painful, but they’re still alive and I can always mend those broken pieces together if I really wanted to. But this is different. He’ll never come back, and I don’t know how to deal with this fact yet. I’m kind of tearing up as I write this, so bear with me.

I guess I’m just curious how other people have dealt with this situation. I guess because we all expected it, it doesn’t hurt as bad as if it came out of the blue. I saw him last week and even talked to him the night before he passed, telling him I’d come see him when the weekend came and that I would play violin and piano for him again. We knew it was going to be happen, I mean, when you have stage four cancer and none of the chemo or radiation therapy works, and when you don’t eat because the therapies screwed up your body, there is little chance you’ll survive for long.

We didn’t know when it would happen…and now that “when” came, I feel almost out of place. I still act the same at work, at research, in class, in lab, at the organization meetings, and all that jazz…but it’s always on my mind and I don’t know how I should act. I’m sad, but there’s something forcing me not to show it. I guess it could be my grandfather’s presence. He was a really tough guy, and he always tells us to study hard in school. Even with his cancer, he told me he would wait for the day I graduated, and I definitely believed he had the strength to do so.

I guess what makes his death the saddest is that he won’t realize his long time dream, of watching all of his grandchildren get married. I remember my grandmother kept telling us all to get married soon so our grandpa would be happy and get better from his cancer. A silly idea, but I think if we (cousins, my bro, and me) had serious girlfriends/boyfriends, we’d probably consider it.

The main reason I feel the way I do is that I don’t know how is the best way to commemorate his life. Funerals are sad, and he wouldn’t want us crying over him. The funeral is tomorrow (I’m writing this Jan 27), and it will be my first one. I’m going to be wearing my high school orchestra dress, simple and black. I never thought I’d actually wear it at a funeral. I remember when I was in high school my friend and I would joke about how hideous the dress was and that the only time outside of orchestra we would wear it would be at our own funerals. Weird. I’m going to bring my Erhu (two-stringed Chinese instrument) and violin to play for my grandfather and the rest of my family and family friends. It will be a nice service.

I wish he could have had someone write his story, the life he lived and the challenges he came across. We’ve compiled many pictures of him and his medals from World War II when he was in China fighting against the Japanese; these will be displayed at the funeral. I remember he would tell me not to marry Japanese in the future because he would be too sad at my wedding for killing their people in the past, but when you’re a soldier and you’re fighting for your life and your family, you have to do what you can to protect it all. He ran away from home when he was seventeen to join the army, got married around early 20s and had seven kids, all of which he sent to the best colleges. It’s really amazing what he accomplished in his 90 years.

Perhaps, maybe one day, I’ll write that story. For now I know he would want me to keep with my studies and enjoy life, so I’m going to do my best. I wonder what my grandma must be feeling. I mean, losing the person who has been a witness to your life for over 65 years must be traumatic. You knew it was going to happen, but you just hope that day wouldn’t have to come. I have a feeling she’ll be living with us, which would be nice so that I can spend even more time with her on the weekends that I go home.

Although a life was lost, a life was born too.

Although a life was lost, a life was born too. My grandpa got to meet one of the newest members of our family (my cousin's two-month baby) while he was alive, and this baby is such a cutie. Welcome to the family Andrew! We're so happy you met your great-grandfather before he left.

My cousin played a very old Chinese song on my violin by ear (he's so amazing I don't know how he does it) for my grandpa and my grandma was so happy because he was trying to sing along with it. It was amazing to have that moment because he couldn't talk with all of those therapies.

My cousin played a very old Chinese song on my violin by ear (he's so amazing I don't know how he does it) for my grandpa and my grandma was so happy because he was trying to sing along with it. It was amazing to have that moment because he couldn't talk with all of those therapies.

My cousin is so talented. He was playing a song he wrote on the piano for my grandpa. I wish I could be as talented to do that. We did a duet together and all of the other residents of the nursing home came to listen. We played Pachelbel's Canon with me on the violin and he on the piano. Everyone really liked it.

My cousin is so talented. He was playing a song he wrote on the piano for my grandpa. I wish I could be as talented to do that. We did a duet together and all of the other residents of the nursing home came to listen. We played Pachelbel's Canon with me on the violin and he on the piano. Everyone really liked it. My mom said she and my aunts were getting really emotional.

Anyway, there’s probably more I want to say, but I hate being emotional in public places. Nothing new with me besides that I’m playing co-ed intramural basketball. I have games Tuesdays and Thursdays, so cheer me and my team on if you ever come out to the UIC recreation center sometime. I think next weekend I’ll be going to visit my brother down at U of I because PSA has a fashion show and he made the choreography for the dances. I have some other things going on, but writing this kind of stressed me out.

Keep your head up UIC, and I’ll try my best to do the same.

我想念你…安息爺爺.

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