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The time is near. The big day is almost here. This is it. This is the final stage most of us look forward to in life. That’s right, college graduation. This May of 2008, I will be going through a big transition in my life. This is the transition many of us all fear and wish we were young kids watching Saturday morning cartoon shows again. Or maybe some of us may not even be afraid. You may be cheering and extremely happy that you don’t anymore papers to write or study all night long. Walking the stage and getting the diploma means one thing – we’re all growing up. I’m pretty happy and proud of myself for making it this far, but one thing that really freaks me out, is what lies in the real world. I’ve been in school for almost 18 years of my life. It’s going to be something totally different and new. I’m about to become a real adult and have real responsibilities. This means no more messing around. The time is here and it’s time to do something with my life.

To be continued…

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On Friday night (2-15-08), a decision was settled amongst us: we decided to try out a new night club, The Krazy Koyote, we heard about it through flyers that were passed out on school campus. The flyers that were promoting the club informed us that a bay area rapper would be performing at the club, which was what caught our attention to attend the club. Since there are not 18 and over clubs in San Jose we decided we decided to drive out of the city to find some sort of entertainment for the night.

            All my sorority sisters and girlfriends were in a hassle to get ready. We all thought tt was going to be worth it, we figured because of how the club was being promoted. The girls prepared by doing their hair and their makeup while the guys put on their polo’s and cologne. We were preparing for an unforgettable night of adventure, or so we thought.

            However, our adventure might just have ended. After a pretty boring 40 minute ride, we reached our final destination. Once outside the club we realized it was actually an all-age club meaning little high school kids and a twenty one and over group were there too. The next thing we knew was we were forced to wait in line in the frigid air of Gilroy. Apparently, after waiting for so long, we concluded that it was too crowded; hence, the club didn’t want to let any more people in. Thus, my friend, whose name is Isabel, got tired of waiting, she decided to get into the club for free. Within five minutes, she exits the club and proceeds to tell the group it is NOT worth the fifteen dollars it takes to get into the Krazy Koyote club. So, she vents: “First of all it is not even packed; therefore, I don’t understand why they won’t let you in. Secondly, not everyone is dancing. Thirdly, the building’s walls are so ugly I can’t believe they would actually charge to get into this shit hole. Let’s just go to the car and finish our bottle of Bacardi 151.” By this point in time we just yearned to have a good time since we had wasted all of our valuable time and energy waiting in the terribly long line.

             I can conclude from this experience that the Krazy Koyote is not suitable for any people out there looking for an adventure.    

I never image a new world which I am not accustomed to. I was born in a rural country area where I rarely see many bicycles nor car at all during my 9 years of existence. I would watch with joy and astoundment as the truck drove passed by our house. I often walked for miles to get to school everyday but rarely see anyone with motorcycles. I went to my Aunt’s house in Saigon for the first time for our first interview to come to America. My eyes was lighted with amazement to see how many people and cars were there. It took me days to adjust to this new atmosphere. I knew it only few more months before I took on a new journey. I got lost for the longest 12 hours of my life. I was playing hidden-seek my cousins in the back alley. I thought I was walking back to the front of the house but I was walking further way from it. Everything seem to be same and I thought to myself “I must be nea but why it seem to take forever?” I walked 5 miles and came to the end of the alley where it opens up to a major city street. People were driving motorcycles and cars with continues motion around the intersection. They seem to be in a chirograph without running into each other. My amazement to the surrounding was overcoming by my tears. I knew I was lost and a wonder lady assist me to the police station. I met an outstanding police officer who drove me around to see if I can Identified my Aunt’s house. We were exhausted in our search without any luck, but we tried again the next morning. This time, I was able to remember and got home to my family before heading out on a new journey. “What a new journey is going to entail for me this time?” pondering myself.

Chinese New Year is on February 7, 2008. Of course all the fun and festivities happen on Chinese New Year’s Eve which happens to be today! For those who don’t know, Chinese New Year is actually two weeks long where friends and family get together and EAT! My first dinner is actually tonight, which I have to skip for this class, but the most important family dinner is actually tomorrow night. My family decided to have dinner at our house in Burlingame and my mom has been preparing for this night for a week now. She bought a bunch of decorations to put all over the house. When I actually got into the house and noticed all the decorations, I had feeling of “home”, “happiness”, and “tradition”. Tomorrow night, my family has invited over 20 friends and family to come over and enjoy a great meal. This time of year is always a really happy time and I’m looking forward to all the family lunches and dinners for the next two weeks!  

2008 started out great. I was promoted to be a part-time manager. I actually got all the classes I needed, and that’s never happen in the 3 years I’ve been at SJSU. So, for the first time, no stress of adding classes for me on the first day of school. But this past week I think I may have got myself into way more then I can handle. I just finished a forty-hour work week with five classes to go to. I had a stomach ache for three days, because I was stressed out about being stressed out. Days should be forty-eight hours. Then I could fit everything I have to do in the day. Alright, no more complaining, nobody likes a complainer. This year has started out great, a little hectic, but nothing I can’t handle. I just have to start managing my time efficiently.

Friends. Family. Tons of food. Cheers and tears. This is Super Bowl Sunday! I arrived at my friends house just in time for kickoff. Everyones eyes were glued to the screen. The only time people would leave the room was during a commercial break and even that was almost impossible to do. The game itself had its ups and downs, but it was a pretty boring game. Once the score reached 14-10 with the Patriots in the lead, almost everyone assumed that the Patriots and Tom Brady had a guaranteed win. But not me. I had faith in my Giants! I knew that my main man, Eli Manning, wouldn’t let me down! And sure enough, within the last minute, he did not disappoint me. The last minute was the best and most memorable moment of the game. The Giants scored a touchdown and made a field goal. The new and final score read 17-14. The Giants had won the Super Bowl! I and a handle of my friends were ecstatic! We celebrated the win by boasting about the winning team followed by a quick celebration of drinks and food. It was a great way to end my weekend and start a new!

In an effort to become more intercultural, I recently spent a month overseas. I spent a majority of this time in Saigon, Vietnam. One of the biggest points of culture shock was the traffic; the constant honking of horns, the lawlessness, and all those motorbikes! My cousin joked with me that crossing the street there is a lot like playing frogger with your life. How right he was. The only way to get across a busy street is to walk into a stream of traffic and expect people to swerve out of the way.A Street in Saigon

Actually being on a motorbike is no safer; taxis and cars will push their way through crowds of bikes. Making a left turn means driving into oncoming traffic. And people are constantly running red lights. The thought of riding one of these bikes is enough to terrify most foreigners, but to me it looked like too much fun. Never being the objective observer, I rented a bike and rode one in Sai Gon for 20 days without incident.

Here are the two golden rules about riding a motorbike in Saigon. First, there is strenght in numbers; pushing your way infront of a taxi is very dangerous, but if eight other people are doing it, its reasonable to assume the taxi will stop. Second, no harm no foul. Drive the wrong way down a one way street. Cut people off. Speed and run red lights. Nobody will mind, as long as nobody gets hurt. But my best advice to you is to stay off the streets of Saigon.

This weekend I attended yet another baby shower for a relative of my boyfriend whom I have been involved with for almost three years. This qualifies me as one of the “lucky females” to receive an invitation to every kind of shower for every woman in his family.  It just happens that he has three sisters who all seem to be Polish Baby Makers. From the time I  met them I have attended three baby showers full of emotional women, diaper rash cream, and embarrassing games. Every so often I noticed a dad or husband peer around the corner out of curiosity but then quickly disappear out the front door.  After everyone gets a few glasses of wine in them, I seem to be the target every time.  The family seems to find it amusing to tell me that I’m next and harass me about why we’re not married yet.  I am constantly shaking my head and laughing it off thinking to myself that they have quite a while to wait.  I try to explain, in broken Polish, that I have to finish school and get a job first.  I have a lot to focus on before even considering a family. I hate to think I have an entire family waiting around for me.  Anyways, I guess I’m fortunate that they like me so much.  I can now clearly understand why men steer clear from these types of events.  Definite estrogen overload. 

As I drove to Oakland yesterday to cast my vote, I was thinking about how the city needs a really good PR agent. Why? Because when I tell people that I used to live in Oakland, they think I would walk over piles of dead bodies to get to 19th Street BART. OK, so Oakland does have a high homicide rate, and there are some places you wouldn’t want to venture out at during the wee hours of the night and, yes, Mayor Dellums is a total douche bag. But (and this is a big but) Oakland has some pretty cool spots, and they remain relatively unknown. So next time you venture into the East Bay, check out some of these cool things to do.

Oakland Art Murmur. The Art Murmur is held the first Friday of every month to promote the local arts. A group of galleries hold an open house that allows people to wander in and out to see exhibits on display. In addition, you can usually catch a street performance, view outdoor art installations or get involved with local, grassroots organizations. Best of all, it’s free.

Urban Capture the Flag. It’s just like the classic childhood game, just transported into downtown Oakland. Anyone can play, and it’s now year round.

Mountain View Cemetery. OK, I know you’re probably thinking I’m really morbid or something, but this cemetery offers some of the most beautiful, sweeping views of the Bay Area. If you are so inclined to visit the graves, check out the famous residents down “Millionaires Row.”

Zachary’s Pizza. Best pizza. Ever.

De Lauer Super Newsstand. Have an urge to check out the St. Petersburg Times at 4 a.m.? Go to De Lauer’s. Located on Broadway in downtown, this is not only one of the few 24 hours newsstands in the Bay Area, but it has a massive collection of books, magazines and newspapers that are local and from out of town. It’s like stepping back into the ’50s.

This is just a small sample of Oakland’s charm. It really is a cool place to be.

No matter what I do I always get sick during winter. I work in a 4th grade classroom Monday thru Friday. Nine times out of ten it’s one of those little “angels” that get me sick. Seeing as though I’m surrounded by little vectors all day, I am the enforcer of the Purell and Kleenex. You would think that their parents would teach them to cover their mouths, with their sleeves, and keep their nasty hands to themselves, but no. So not only am I the teacher’s aid, I am now the common courtesy instructor. On Monday I noticed one of the girls had a runny nose and glossy eyes. I told her to immediately go to the office and have her parents pick her up. Ten minuets later we got a phone call from the office saying that her parents couldn’t pick her up and according to their observation she seemed fine. Once I heard this, I knew that I had to take the necessary precautions in order not to get sick. Emergency and air borne are my friends, or so I thought. Last night I began to feel the beginning symptoms of a cold, so I popped a couple vitamins C and went to bed. This morning I feel like someone came into my bedroom and hit me with a ton a bricks. I was infected and had all the symptoms of the flu. So needless to say I feel like crap and am looking forward to my bed and Nyquil.