Friday, September 28, 2012

I'll have free time someday

I know I haven't been blogging a lot this school year, or really that much since I got back from Italy, but like most semesters, nothing crazy is happening, my life is just really busy.

I always say I'm going to make my semester easier this time around, and yet I always fill it up somehow and make it more difficult for myself.

Monday - Thursday I'm not done until around 8 o'clock, with an hour or two break during the day (which I fill up with homework or other assignments).

I have 5 upper level classes this semester, Honors, International Finance, Conversazione e Cultura, Operations Management and International Marketing, as well as the best class ever, ARCHERY. I'm a beast. Not really, but I'm doing way better than when I started!

Though this is a normal workload, I also have 3 jobs. I'm a Teacher's Assistant for Italian 101, teaching 2 drill sessions a week to the students (all in Italian), I'm a tutor for Italian and I'm a Teacher's Assistant for Organizational Behavior and Management. I work at least 2 of my 3 jobs Monday-Thursday. This semester, TGIF actually has meaning (finally) because it's legitimately a break for me. I'm done by 2 pm and since most of my commitments happen during the week, with the odd exception, my weekends are free.

I manage to pack those too, now that I have a car on campus. I spent last weekend at St. Bonaventure for Cesca's family weekend- it was wonderful to see her, and my parents even drove down for a day. I was nervous about driving by myself for 2.5 hours, but my playlists kept me entertained. I think I prefer driving with company- the 3.5 hour drive to IC didn't feel so long with my mother in the car with me.

This weekend is APPLE FEST. It's our last one for the foreseeable future so we're going to make it a good one!

Next weekend we are venturing to New Hampshire to attend Sandwich Fair. No, it isn't a fair about Sandwiches, it's a fair in Sandwich, New Hampshire. Liz has talked about it for the past 3 years (along with Papa Gino's) so we will finally get to see what all the hype is about. I've never been to NH so I'm excited to see where Liz lives.

That's about my life so far, busy busy busy. Hopefully someday it will slow down!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Decisions, decision

I've come across an interesting job idea for after I graduate... I'm still tossing the idea around in my head, but it's something that I think could be a great adventure. A terrifying, eye opening, crazy, probably stupid, ambitious adventure. Wanna know what it is?

Teaching English in Asia.

Sounds crazy, right? I know. I'm still debating intensely about it.

I'm trying to make a list of pros and cons about this idea. If you're reading this and can think of anything or want to weigh in, by all means do. I'm still just toying with the idea, but any thoughts would be welcome.

I was thinking particularly of Korea, because of certain factors like pay and standard of living, but that's not a sure thing either.


I've always wanted to see some of Asia. Teaching would get me there.
The demand is pretty high, so the job market seems good
I'm not burdened by life right now- I don't have a house, a serious relationship, a car payment, or lots of loans (yet), nor do I have a job I'm committed to
There is no language requirement
In Korea, housing is often provided, as well as airfare reimbursement
The cost of living in Korea is cheaper than Japan, but Japan is also an option
Many teachers are able to save $800-$1000 a month in Korea, and can usually save in Japan if they're careful (meaning I could save up in the grace period before I have to pay back my student loans and start on those?)
Most schools give you 1 month's salary at the end of a 1 year contract in Korea
Korea/Japan are close and both well developed and technological
I'd be certified to teach English as a second language, which could look good on a resume
More international experience, and a unique one at that
If I hate it, it's only a year
How cool would my Facebook pictures be?


It's a whole year. I've lived away from home, but for only 4 months at a time. I can't imagine the homesickness I might experience during a year
Culture shock in an Asian country will probably be more intense than in a European
I don't speak a word of Korean, and it's much more complicated and different than any Romance language I've been studying
If I hate it I'm stuck
I'd be alone- Sarah is thinking of doing it as well, but there's no guarantee we would be together
Getting certified is gonna cost money (good thing I have some jobs?)

That's not the whole list, but that's all I can think of right now. Thoughts? Opinions? Help me!

Monday, September 3, 2012

A Weekend of New Experiences

My last Labor Day Weekend in Ithaca turned out to be a great one for me, in terms of new experiences. I think after all the time abroad and traveling around the world, I decided at some point that I never wanted to stop trying new things or seeing new places.

While this weekend wasn't about jetsetting, it did turn out to be a good one for the 'trying new things' part of my philosophy. Saturday was the annual Honors whitewater rafting trip. Liz and I woke up at the god-awfully early hour of 5:45 am to board the bus with the rest of the participants and head out to Watertown to the Black River. Now, I have never been whitewater rafting or done anything remotely like it, so I was a bit nervous. The guy adjusting my life jacket didn't help when he said that this was a "pretty aggressive introduction" to the world of whitewater rafting. My nerves increased.

Thankfully for me and my nerves, the water levels weren't overly intense this year, as there's been a massive drought over the summer. While it wasn't easy, it wasn't as rough as it could have been. I was a bit sore afterwards, especially in the shoulder area, but it was great fun. We got to stop and swim in a couple of nice places and did some crazy stunts in the rapids. You really have to work hard and do your part though, even if it is hard. It is rather difficult to paddle with all of your might as the river guide is screaming 'HARD FORWARD!!! HARD FORWARD!!!' (which means paddle with everything you've got!) while you're being lurched about in a rapid. Nobody fell off our raft though, so that was an accomplishment.

Many a Titanic- "there's a boat Jack" references were made.

My next adventure came today. Casey invited Andrea, Liz and me to her house to go tubing on the lake. Now, I've also never been tubing, nor have I ever been on a motorboat. So today was another big new experience day for me. It wasn't the most gloriously sunny day by far, (in fact, it rained on us a couple of times!) but the poor weather made for a pretty deserted lake. The better to tube on, my dears.

Tubing was a blast! I think I swallowed a gallon of lake water though. Apparently my first, er, dismount as I call it was spectacular. Unable to hold on any longer, I released the inner tube. According to Liz, I barrel rolled off and through the air a bit before rolling on top of the water and finally under. Not the lease painful activity, but it was great! On my second run I felt sure that I was going to flip at least 6 times, and the waves crashing over nearly drowned me! (Ok, not really, but I got quite soaked).

Both were definitely activities I would do again, if I had my awesome and experienced friends with me. I'm glad I had the opportunity to try both, especially since I'm not an overly huge outdoorsy person. My paralyzing fear of bees tends to forestall any outdoor activities, but that fear, excluding a terrifying 30 seconds with a bee on my back while rafting, was avoided this weekend. I'm grateful for these opportunities and hope to continue doing/seeing new things.

So far so good. Senior year is gonna be a blast!