Done Exams — Now For Some Me Time

Hey all!

So it had been a while since my last post, but that is all due to school, commitments and basically me not having anything really interesting to say.

But I must say, having been asked out by a 34 year old was either a high…or a low of my life? He knew how old I was too, I am pretty sure. This made me question what age is my upper limit when it comes to guys. But you know what, 34 would probably be fine, if that guy didn’t ask me in a semi-creepy way.

I am finally done exams and ready to type away! I apologize to everyone who is subscribed to me, as well as the people I am subscribed to! Believe me, I wish I had time to scroll away on my Reader on WordPress and read your lovely posts, but finals just did not allow me to do so!

To celebrate my freedom, I booked an appointment at Hive Hair Spa to do my hair. I used to go to Chura, but they are always booked, so I have to book weeks in advance. Also, Chura would require me to bus all the way downtown, whereas with Hive, I lived blocks away!

First time visitors get 20% off! I really liked the atmosphere of the salon. It was small yet modern, but very cosy. They had leather armchairs that you could melt into while they dealt with your hair. They also offer you complimentary drinks (various teas) and Pocky! I thought that was very cute and definitely a good way to differentiate their business! Pocky and Japanese stuff? You basically instantly make the connection to what they sell.

20121214-190315.jpg

 

After they were almost done with my hair, they also offer you a massage. Overall, it was a great experience and I managed to finish off my novel, Slaughterhouse Five, during my sitting. So great to have time to read something other than a textbook!

Although their hair stylists/barbers do not all speak English, they have one or two staff on hand who does! So at one point, my hair stylist could not understand my question so she went to get me someone who could explain stuff to me. So obviously, I did not really talk to my stylist, but it was totally fine because I am not particularly talkative anyway, and really wanted to read. 😛 But in all, she was still very nice and professional!

Anyway, I am going to put this holiday to good use– catch up on TV shows that I have been meaning to watch! So basically, that would include finishing off the rest of Supernatural, starting Merlin (so sad they cancelled it though!), and I cannot wait for the new Doctor Who episode!!

This was just a short update, just so I get a feel of what blogging is again. I am serious, it is that foreign to me now.

Here’s to hoping that everyone else out there is enjoying the holiday!

 

-Karen

 

A New School Year

“The liver made me leave home,” Scott says explaining how he dreaded having to eat liver as a young boy. We all laughed. “No, seriously.”

And that is my COMM 290 (Introduction to Quantitative Decision Making) professor. He really does remind me of my Financial Accounting professor, whose class I took during summer. They are both charismatic and able to capture the attention of their students. I really like learning about Microsoft Excel in COMM 290, because to me, Excel had always been just a cool place to put numbers in little neat boxes. Now I get to go beyond that and learn useful new skills! However, I have heard that this course gets quite hard, especially when it comes to is final exam, which makes me like this course less.

It has been almost a month since school has started. I am pretty satisfied with all my professors and I am happy with the way I organized my timetable. I definitely learned a lot from last year! I am excited to have an excuse to write this term, since I am the Editor-in-Chief of our faculty’s newspaper, The Cavalier, as well as being in a creative writing course. Our professor, Steven Galloway, is quite interesting. For all you Canadians out there, you may have read his books? Want a quote from him? Well you will get one anyway.

             “You can write about anything you want! Except unicorns. I hate unicorns.Steven Galloway

At first I had no idea how one could give lectures in Creative Writing. I mean, do you not just write whatever comes to you and go where your creativity brings you? I was quite curious as I sat down for my first lecture. Going through the course outline made me realize our professor was there as a guide, to let us know how we can get started. The syllabus also revealed that we were going to touch on different forms of writing. It is an interesting class, and I quite enjoy it. I really like the way how Steven tries not to constrict or influence us too much, and keeps things vague so that we can take our own paths in our writing. However, I am also quite nervous as our first assignment is coming up. My writing definitely feels rusty and lacklustre at the moment.

On to my not so favoured classes. Or rather class, because I really just quite dislike this one class: Managerial Economics. I am pretty bad at economics, and was pretty proud that I was able to get through first year. What makes this economics class extra horrible? Well, it is a mix of calculus and economics. Great. I am pretty sure there is nothing I hate more in this world than math. Also, the textbook is filled with little errors, such as referencing the wrong example in its text. You can eventually work out what they meant to say, but it is quite distracting. (Plus, I spent almost $100 on that textbook, so having it properly edited before they printed it would have made me less frustrated.) Sadly, it is a require course, so I have to take it. Hopefully I survive with a decent mark, seeing as how I need a fairly good average to choose my major next year.

Well that is my quick update! Hope you are all doing well, and that those of you who are also settling into the new school year are on track! If not, get it together! Midterm month is coming.

Wonder how many more of these sunny days we will get at UBC

-Karen

Keep On Trooping!

Hey y’all!

It has been a while, but I think I finally found time to post! (Well, squeeze time out anyway.) I cannot believe there is only one more week left of my first-year university life! Although I am looking forward to getting a break from school, I realize that the last week of school means projects and essays are now due, not to mention finals are just right around the corner.

Throughout the last week, I really challenged myself to grab at opportunities. Aside from trying to manage my homework (Chinese oral exam script writing, English final essay draft, Political Science final essay just to name a few), I also applied for clubs and positions within Sauder. I spent much of my first year at university trying to find my interest and learning how to handle the university lifestyle. I went in believing I could easily juggle school, my social life and my family life. Then reality punches me in the face and tells me that it is going to be a lot harder than I thought. Needless to say, I spent my first year finding myself and concentrating on school…meaning I was not as involved as I thought I was going to be. I joined two clubs within my commerce faculty, and went to events for both. I really regret not going to any of the big conferences, so that is definitely on my bucket list for next year. But I feel just going to events was not enough. You need to find something you are interested in and then actually get involved.

I spend a good portion of my first term wondering what I was doing in business school. Thankfully, I asked around and explored some of the available majors. I think it is safe to say that marketing is what I want to concentrate on later on. It is not as rigid as accounting or finance, allowing your creativity and personal thoughts to come into play. I look forward to actually taking marketing courses next year, since year one was really a pre-commerce year. You only get a really brief overview of the world of commerce. I cannot wait for next year! Having said that, I am still plenty nervous because we are required to take more (and harder) courses. Oh well, guess only time will tell how well I deal with that.

So back to grabbing opportunities. This Tuesday, I returned home after my classes ended and I received a call later on at night. I swear, my heart stopped and my blood froze when I picked up the call and realized what it was about. Apparently I was scheduled for an interview on that day. Wonderful. I have no idea how that happened, but my name was clearly on the Google Doc. where everyone signed up for an interview slot, but I am 100% sure I did not sign up for my time slot. I was not even aware sign ups were available. Luckily, I asked if there was any way for me to reschedule and they agreed to let me come in the next day at 7 p.m.

I think if this interview was for some other position, I would not have minded as much that I had already left a bad impression on my interviewers. However, I really wanted this position. I was interviewing for the position of editor-in-chief of the Cavalier, Sauder’s very own newspaper. Those of you who know me will know that I love writing. And reading. Within Sauder, this position seemed like the perfect way for me to get involved with something I loved! Sure, my chances were slim, but I still wanted to know that I actually tried. I was disappointed with what had happened, but I knew I still had my chance at my actual interview.

The next school day was the longest one ever. I felt butterflies in my stomach more than once. It honestly felt like it was butterfly migration season, and their final destination was my stomach. I was a bunch of nerves as I headed over to my interview. The interview itself? I stuttered, I stumbled over questions and I think my nervousness showed. I was pretty disappointed because I have been to several interviews for various positions this year and have been rejected in all of them. I was at the low point where I believe I probably would never get a place anywhere. I walked out feeling horrible. I sat at the student lounge for a while with some of friends, just being sad.

What happened next was amazing. Riley, one of my interviewers and the current editor-in-chief of the Cavalier, came out and started talking to some of my friends. I think I was the last interviewee of the day and all the interviewers were finally done with their long day. I was kind of huddled in a corner, too depressed to do anything. However, I did eventually end up walking over to him because I wanted to question why he decided to change the Cavalier so much during his time as editor. He answered me and I was listening, but I guess I was not paying as much attention as I thought I was. I heard one of my friends say “She totally did not hear him” and someone else say “Can’t believe she didn’t catch that…”. This all made me pause and go “Wait, what?” Then Riley goes “Uhh, yeah, so you got the position. Congratulations, you’re the new co-editor in chief of the Cavalier.”

This is kind of embarrassing, but I cried. I was so surprised, and happy and relieved—basically a whole bunch of positive emotions just rushing out. I think that was the happiest I have felt for a very long time. Sure, this will add to my workload next year, since I will be responsible for making sure the monthly issues come out on time, but HECK, it is something I would gladly do!

I think my takeaway from this experience is to never stop trying. Again, I was rejected numerous times throughout the year, but hey, that is how it is with everyone. At times you may end up getting something on your first try, but most of the time, you will have to try again and again. Just do not give up and keep on trooping!

I have my Frosh Leader interview tomorrow and am definitely feeling the nervousness I feel before every interview! At the same time, I am still pretty excited! To end this off, I hope my little story motivated some of you guys and pushes you to go out and try your luck! I am also very glad I got a chance to post again!

Till next time!

-Karen

P.s I think you should all check out the Cavalier. Especially when I start editing 🙂

Spring…you can come whenever you want. No, seriously.

School has started again and I am amazed at how fast I fall back into schedule. It is as if I never left for reading break at all. I guess good times always pass by a lot faster than you would think. I did do quite a bit during my break though so I am proud of that! 🙂 I usually spend all my holidays sitting in front of the computer/ TV being lazy.

 

Quick summary of my reading break:
18-20th: Started off going to Portland, Oregon and returned early Monday morning, on the 20th.
21st: Went to movies with Monica and Josh on Tuesday (Telus Tuesdays! Half price movie tickets!!) Ended up watching three movies: A Dangerous Method, The Secret World of Arriety, The Artist. We then ate dinner at Martini’s Restaurant on Broadway! Huge portions! Finished off with a trip to Marble Slab! Basically a fat day because we sat around for six hours and then just ate a lot.

23rd: Morning dim sum at Rainflower Restaurant at Richmond. Then Downtown gift shopping with Monica. Then went to Kody’s birthday 🙂 We got him a trollface T-shirt!

AHAHA! This was the fancy schmancy dim sum place. So we took a pic on their crazy sofas.

Fancy chandelier at the dim sum place...Probably one of the fanciest dim sum places I have been with friends.

Monica and I made chocolate dipped strawberries for Kody 🙂

24th: Went to Flo Tea Room with family! Love this place so much because of its chill environment. We can sit there forever, just talking and taking our time. 🙂

25th: Justin’s birthday dinner on Saturday at Red Robins on Broadway. Our side of the table spend quite a lot of our time playing UNO, which I only brought in case we needed entertainment. Turns out we would play it for the majority of our time there.
26th: Frantically finishing off homework and readings assigned because, once again, I left it to last minute.

Oh, and my reading break nails 🙂

Monarch butterfly nails! Crudely done, but it will have to do 🙂

——————————Ignore this part to skip my rant about school——————————

I still have not recovered from my lack of studying and am falling behind in my class readings! What is worse is that I have two term papers coming up. I NEED A TOPIC FOR MY ENGLISH ESSAY! I kind of have one formed, but I do not know how to go about making it into an academic research paper. Although they are both not due for at least another two or so weeks, I am already stressing out from it because of the amount of work involved in both papers.

Coming up, I also have my psychology and macroeconomics midterm exams on the same day. There is just so much to look forward to.
Registration for summer courses are also happening on the 9th and I still have no idea what I want to take. I definitely want to get some compulsory classes out of the way for next September, but taking intense accounting during the summer seems like a sure way for me to fail that class…
—————————————————————–

On another note, I am READY for spring! I was just thinking about that as I was walking to the bus stop on Monday, but this is what I woke up to on Wednesday:

It snowed...

Really? Mother nature gives us snow at the beginning of March, but fails to give us a white Christmas? Hmm… However, I did see small flowers blooming randomly on one of my neighbour’s lawn this week! Not a good picture, but it made me stop and stare because it really was random and unexpected!

I am pretty sick of trudging around in my rain boots and having to layer up because it is freezing outside. I cannot believe I am going to say this, (since I have always hated the heat) but I really would not mind a really sunny day. Not Hong Kong’s humid-hot sunny days, but more like a sunny Californian day where it is still significantly warm. 🙂

Well, to end off this post: spotted at UBC’s CIRS building:

Seriously, do not drink it.

 I read it then doubled back and took a picture because I think I made the You-don’t-say face after reading it, despite being alone in there.
Ohhh life 🙂
Wish me luck for my next few weeks! I know it is going to be a total nightmare! 😦
-Karen

What I’ve learned this week

1) How to play mahjong

2) I cannot eat as much as I think I can

3) Santa Claus is Canadian

4) The idea of watching movies alone

So starting off with number 1, I finally learned how to play mahjong! Okay, so I am not at the level where you can play the version where you tally up the points, and you play certain different combinations, but I learned how to play the regular matching three up one! Honestly, in my 18 years of life, although I have watched my parents and many aunts and uncles around me play mahjong, I have never thought about learning it. However, now that I have, I cannot believe I never did! It is actually very fun, and I feel more connected to my Asian heritage. Okay, maybe not so much the whole connected thing, but it was still fun! Funny (or not so) thing is that we play at the UBC library. I think half the people wanted to kill us at Irving K. Barber and the other half wanted to join us. Okay, before you start tutting at me, you have got to realize that Irving is infamous for being the library you to go when you do not want to study. It is the nosiest library in the whole of UBC. At one point, some random guy came up and asked if he can join us for a round. Of course we agreed, but he had to leave before we finished our own round. 😦 Overall, I would say it felt like I have acquired another life skill.

Mahjong at the library...I won three times in a row!

Now to number 2…it all began (and ended) at Anton’s. So after everyone’s classes ended today, us hungry university kids were starving and William, one of my friends, said he knew a place. We all listened as he described how although it is like $20 a plate, the spaghetti portions were huge and you win a prize if you actually end up finishing it. Being who we were, we were like

It turns out that this place was Anton’s Pasta Bar, on Hastings and between Carleton and Madion. We got there and I was so hungry I declared I could eat half a cow. My friend said she was so hungry she would resort to cannibalism (*cough* Monica). There was a line, as my friend had warned, since it was such a popular joint. After sitting down, we basically took ten minutes before quickly flagging down the waitress so we could order. Looking around the restaurant, I saw everyone asking for a box to take away their leftovers. I was criticizing how people could not even eat one-third of their plate of spaghetti. WEAK! When our food came, we all dug in. Although there was five of us, we ate in silence for 10-15 minutes. That is how hungry and into our food we were. I got the Spinach Fettuccine Alla Fillippo, which was basically a white sauce spaghetti with spinach and chicken. Delicious! Charlie also got a white sauce spaghetti (the Fettuccine Alfredo), while Monica and Kody got the Fettuccine Creola. William was the only one who got something really different, the Tortellini Alla Panna. After a while I realized that this was an endless battle. In the end I think I ate 1/3 of my plate max. Kind of sad when you walked in with such high expectations of yourself. And I wanted the prize too (a pen). Sucked watching some table behind us claim a pen. Anyways, defeat aside, that restaurant was delicious! Probably not the place you would take someone on a date, due to having to pig out and dig through a heaping plate of pasta, but a great place with a cheerful environment for hanging out with friends.

Anton's Past Bar storefront featuring Valentine's Day

Our spaghetti 🙂

A feast! Challenge accepted!

Before challenge...

Challenge failed...though you have got to admit, I did plough through a lot!

And we shamefully walked away with half our plates in these containers...

Point number 3 came up as we were waiting for our takeout boxes at Anton’s. We narrowed down Santa Claus’s nationality as either Russian, American (from USA) or Canadian. We all started arguing our points and the argument went on from there. My friend and I argued that since he wears white and red, is super nice, and our coin (the quarters) has a picture of a caribou, which is the same as a reindeer, Santa Claus is Canadian. No one seemed to have as much evidence as we did so we kind of left that there. 🙂

Lastly, I was having a conversation with my mom the other day, complaining how I do not think I know anyone who would be willing to watch “The Artist” with me, though I desperately want to! All my friends definitely do not seem like the type to be into that type of movie…so I was stuck in a dead end. I jokingly said “I might as well go to the cinemas by myself.” My mom then told me that watching a movie by yourself is a whole new experience. When I thought about it, I realized how true that was. You do not have to censor your feelings and you can fully concentrate on the film! I really am thinking of trying it out one day, just to see how I like it. Who knows? It may even become a thing I do! Honestly, after consideration, I would most probably want to watch those cry-your-eyes-out movies alone because it gets so hard to control your tears when you are into the movie.

So for now, that is what I have learned this week! 🙂 Have a great weekend everyone!

-Karen