Day #3 – Thoughts from Centennial Campus Garden

It’s day 3 and I’m already struggling to come up with random subject matter that makes interesting posts. Starting early today though, since yesterday’s one fell flat, probably because I posted so late in the day and only a few minutes before midnight.

Sitting in HKU’s Centennial Garden right now, since the weather is really nice today, not too sunny not too windy, just right. Listening to “80 Millionen” by Max Giesinger (with earbuds since I don’t want to disrupt the quiet and I’m not a jerk) to learn German since I need to sing a part of it in next Tuesday German’s lesson.

Why singing?

Because it is a good way of learning a language at normal talking speed, exposes you to a bit of the culture and it is a fun way of expanding one’s vocabulary.

And besides, where else are you going to learn the word “Wahrscheinlichkeitsrechnung” or Probability calculation in everyday life? 😛

But yeah, just took a quick photo of my surrounding area to put into this blog post, just to give you an idea of how lovely the garden is today.

20171103_133946

It is one of my favorite places on HKU campus since it is an oasis of calm just a few steps away from the hubbub of the busy campus or the controlled chaos of the city. Just a quiet little patch of green where you can sit or stroll around absorbed in your own thoughts, practice for a speech or get some work done without distractions.

Plus its one of those quiet but not too quiet places that’s perfect for recording things (the stairwell of Hoi Oh Chow and the place behind the old halls near the Faculty of Science buildings are other places that are good for this as well).

Also, it has surprisingly decent wifi, probably because of how near it is to Centennial Campus. XD

Which reminds me, I actually had a weird assignment in my freshman year about the garden, where I had to estimate the weight (well guestimate since we weren’t allowed to look stuff up) of everything in the garden to calculate the possibility of the garden collapsing due to extreme amounts of rain.

Yeah it was a bit weird (the class was SCNC1111 – Scientific Methods and Reasoning, which I don’t mind mentioning since all science majors have to take the class anyways (note the course code is different from the SCNC1112 that I tutor, I did pretty poorly in 1111 (in fact I did worse in that class compared to Cantonese) but did really well in 1112.

~ Break for a bit as I go tutor a friend English (well more like record a thing) ~

Finished tutoring (and being stalked by a very enthusiastic bee presumably thought my reddish-purple scrunchy (scrunchie?) was a flower or something.


yeah, now sitting near the fiction section in the Hong Kong Central Library right now. Returned a few books and now I really want to get a head start on history (both classes) but can’t think of a topic at the moment (and like an idiot left all of my history papers at home), so will probably switch over to a different assignment for now – most likely the Common core stuff since that is coming up.

Also need to sort out exchange stuff…. So yeah lots to do, but already I am digging my heels in because my brain feels like the deadline is too far away to start panicking and wants to take a break from midterms/studying not realizing that, you know, that stuff was more than a week ago at this point so I really don’t have an excuse….

 

How many words am I at? I feel like I have typed a lot already…? Oh wow, 620+ words! Well, that is more than enough 😀

I’ll be helping out tomorrow at HKU’s info day, so my post will likely be shorter and about HKU, but we will see what tomorrow brings.

Off to do some actual work now! Until then!

-Rebecca

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Day #2 – A Simmering Pot, A Procrastinating Student

Oh, by the way, got back my WWII history essay back today.

Yeah, REALLY should not have procrastinated on it. Comments noted the numerous grammatical and careless errors like lacking punctuation and several run-on sentences etc things that could have been prevented had I actually spent a reasonable time on it instead of procrastinating til the last minute…

The score wasn’t like devastating or anything, but I KNOW I could have done much better on it than I did and my class grade definitely took a hit since it was worth 30% of my grade. Arghhh. Feel a bit sorry for my professor for having to read through that slog of an essay to be honest, since I will admit, yeah it was bad… anyways

We will wait and see how I did on the Ecology midterm, but hopefully a great score there will make up for my poor one here. (actually, that would make a good future post, how to remember scientific names. Ill think about it)

Ummm….. huh. Well I am running out of time since it is 11:30pm right now (completely forgot about this challenge til now) so here goes nothing!


I’m going to do a daily post prompt now since I was going to write another post about why afternoon classes are awesome but ran out of things to say and it needs more editing to reach the 500 word count.

-Skip to here people arriving from the daily prompt page-

Today’s (that is November 2nd, 2017) daily post theme is… *drumroll for the people arriving to this blog from a different place*

Simmer!

Which is an interesting word when you think about it. Not full on panic boiling but not still and calm water either. Just bubbling away on the back burner without notice.

In a weird way, it is a bit of a metaphor for how small issues slowly develop into large problems.

Both things on a large scale like climate change (which I can’t believe is an issue up to debate in today’s political discourse) or on the personal scale like delaying starting a midterm essay.

At the same time though, the opposite can be true as well.

A little small spark that grows and gains momentum, that works toward a cause, slowly, until the pot simmers over and real change can occur.

A watched pot may not boil, but turn your back on it, and that small simmer may prove to be more powerful than you first thought.

(wow that was a contrived A.F. metaphor 😛 I tried and it is late at night)

Unrelated side note:

I’ve always wondered about those silly “As seen on TV” Ad that used to be aired on TV about that plastic container you make microwaved pasta in. How did they get that effect of the pot to boil over consistently? Like I don’t think that a producer would want to have boiling water so close to the “clumsy actor people”, plus pots don’t really foam over like that in real life when simmering things.

Perhaps they used like soap or something to get that effect? Especially since those clips are always in black and white, so there could be a bit more movie magic involved than I first thought.

But yeah, where was I?

I am feeling a bit like a simmering pot at the moment. I can feel the incoming “boil” with all my final exams and big essays where everything is worth 50%-70% of my final grade on the horizon, but I haven’t brought myself to turn off the stove yet…

Hope this doesn’t blow up in my face….

So there! A few hundred words about a random daily post word, adding up to my 500 word limit. Whoop!

That is all for now, see you tomorrow!

-Rebecca

Day 28 – My super messed up sleep schedule

Well, less “messed up” and more “non existent” at least for now, since it is summer, so no set classes or anything

But tomorrow I have to leave the house at 5:30am ish to meet my 7am morning shift at the RISE conference, so like yesterday, this post will be incredibly short, like barely over the 200 arbitrary word limit short, with lots of padding in between

(why did I set a word limit anyways? That wasn’t really smart considering I have times where I genuinely am not able to write out an entire thing aka right now. Well hind sight is 20/20 I guess)

So anyways, really tired right now after a full shift (5+ hours) of registration today, so apologies for the incoherent nature of this post. Just trying to get words down on paper- er screen- and unlike yesterday, I can’t think of any creative theme to inject some intrest into this post, so you will just be getting dry boring dull me.

How do those crazy hard working people do it though? Like can the just fuction on less sleep, or does having a consistant sleep schedule really help that much? I don’t know but that is 200 words! (tired yay!)

Good night!

Rbecca

Day 27 – Busy days ahead! (+ Parchment length thoughts)

Shorter post today since I need to get up early tomorrow for the RISE tech conference (I’m part of the volunteer team that does registration, it will be my 3rd year taking part) I’ll probably post some stuff about it later when it begins in earnest (tomorrow is just for the people setting up their booths and stuff) so look out for that in the future!

Can’t believe that I have been blogging for nearly 30 days so far, not quite sure what I will do after I complete this challenge. Probably continue posting here, albeit MUCH less frequently, maybe once every two weeks or so, though that depends on how much interesting stuff is happening with my life and how much free time I can devote to this.


I’m at around 130 words right now, so to pad this thing out, I’m just going to add a few more sentences about random things that comes to mind.

  • Game of thrones season 7 is coming out soon, I haven’t read the book series yet, but it’s on my “to read list”
  • Still thinking about next sem of college! (both the classes and exchange stuff)
  • Should have not used contractions in the bit above, but going back and editing them out now feels like cheating..
  • I wonder how many notable works in history were improved upon by their author attempting to meet some arbitrary word count. Probably not many, but still.
  • Actually, was writing things by word count even a thing before the advent of modern word processors? I mean page count I understand, but word count?
  • Oh and before that, did they do it by physical text length ala Harry Potter (side note, now that I think about it, a foot of parchment is like one side of an A4 piece of paper… that’s nothing for secondary school! why do the characters complain so much about it then? That isn’t that much, especially considering you can just write larger since the paper isn’t lined or anything..)

And on that random note, a few final words…

Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!

Rebecca

(Oh and for the curious, I’m a Hufflepuff aka the best house ever! 😛 )

Day 25 – Scratch that!

Like most of these posts, I’ve once again left this until the last moment to do, and therefore are scrambling for ideas and frantically typing away to meet the word count.

I have had plenty of ideas, but everytime I start typing, I have “Scratched it” by deleting the whole thing and starting over… super annoying now that I now have less time and nothing done instead of an unfinished post, but alas here we are.

Since I really can’t think of something, here is a short bullet list of the ideas I have scratched out so far:

  • The daily prompt: Tether – Was going to write about the “Tethers of my world” but it was extremely uninspired and dull. Basically a rehash of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs
  • Finishing the Snacks post – I barely have time to type up this one! Ain’t nobody got time to finish that incredibly long post and find pics etc
  • Quick fire questions – I feel its too soon since the last one… Probably an irrational fear but hey, most my life is full of them, why stop now?
  • My Ultimate book recommendation list – In short, the 5 books I would recommend to anyone I would ever meet. Still might do this in the future, but adjusting it right now, adding some books, taking some off etc.
  • IB-isms – Aka. “Things IB Alumni do”. Most fitting since the IB scores just came out, but I am running out of time, and only had 2 or 3 really good ones off the top of my head
  • Infographic – Work in process, saving til day 30 😛

I should mention that with all of these, I had started typing the post out before getting rid of them… why do I do this to myself -.-”’

I sometimes do this in exam essays, which basically means I end up shooting myself in the foot by wasting time on something that I just scratch out in the end, meaning that the the frantically written thing I end up submitting usually is poorer quality than had I just left the original one XP

So yeah, instead of a decent post, you got all of the could have been’s.

Sorry about that, hopefully something more inspired will show up soon!

Basically this is me right now:

calvin_and_hobbes_creativity_last_minute_panic
Calvin and Hobbes – May 21, 1992 (Sources: 1 & 2 )

Except my problem is the doing bit that requires the panic, not the ideas bit.

Well, that was a bit of an odd post.

See you later!

Rebecca

Day 24 – Elemental Reflections (on a whole bunch of stuff)

Like the types of benders in Avatar the Last Airbender – aka the-greatest-TV-show-ever-no-joke-binge-watch-it-now-if-you-haven’t-seen-it-yet(minus energy bending) or the Classical Greek Elements (without aether), this reflection comes to you in 4 distinct parts related to Air, Water, Earth and Fire!


Air – Element of Freedom. Foreseeing implications, valuing diversity. peace and clarity. 

This section is more about my blog and the “creative freedoms” I’m giving it. 

So I really should have spilt up the snacks post into more than one like the cubing one… oh well, part of this type a day thing is learning more about making posts and blogging.

I’ll be leaving that one incomplete for now and finishing it up later when I get the time too.

Basically, anytime there aren’t finished tags on a post, I’ll get back to it later.

Since the arbitrary rules I wrote at the start technically didn’t say I had to finish a post, or couldn’t edit it later, just that I had to write something every day 😉 Again, my blogs, my rules. 

Also, the more I write these things, the more I realise there are different types of posts. Some that require more time than the few hours (sometimes minutes) at the end of the day that I have.

I feel as though the act of starting to write stuff (possibly not finishing) and editing it later is more closely inline with what I was envisioning when starting this project, rather than just 200 words of copy and paste, so I will give myself a bit of leeway when it comes to “post a day”


Water – Element of change. Going with the flow, being flexible and adaptable.

This is going to be about my changing views on Carousell. If you have no interest in it, skip to the next one. I should also point out that they aren’t paying me or anything like that, just my thoughts.

So earlier in this writing everyday thing, I made a post about how difficult it was to get rid of my textbooks in HK (see the post here ). and I mentioned how I was flogging it on a random app I downloaded but getting no bites.

Well, in the two weeks between me posting that and now, out of my listing of a dozen items just to test it out, I have managed to sell off 1 textbook and have deals in the works to exchange 3 more… Yeah. 

Not sure if it is the fact that school is out, so people are thinking more about buying books, I’m getting lucky with my post times (seems like more people like for things I post in the afternoon) or there are just more people being on the app now (I’ve been seeing the app’s advertisements on mini buses now, though it could just be the 

Or it might just be me, since some of my friends are having trouble selling the same books, even though they are priced lower in some cases.

Perhaps that experience selling books on amazon as a kid paid off? Since some of the really basic stuff (like ISBN numbers so people can double check it is the book they need) or how to describe the condition of a book are missing in some of the other listings I’ve seen. 

For now, I’ll continue trying to keep an open mind toward it and see how it goes! 

(By the way, if you are in HK and want to buy second hand English books, I’m Beckysbooks on Carousell)


Earth – Element of substance. Strong, persistent and enduring, facing challenges head on.

A random pondering of where I stand right now

I can’t believe I’ve gotten this far with writing. 

Seriously.

I have never done a writing project this consistently before and it continues to amaze me that this silly idea I had about a month ago to kill summer boredom has turned into an epic saga with over 24+ chapters of a uni student’s thoughts on everything from growing up and trying to find her place in the world to more random post like geeking out over cubing and being overly metaphoric about random words thrown at be by a daily post blog. 

Then again, it occurs to me that most writing projects start off with a person having comparably silly random idea (a boy becoming a wizard and going to boring school, a fantasy story involving different houses competing to sit on an uncomfortable chair, a girl in a dystopian world who gets thrown into a fight to the death etc) and going:

“Ehhh… why not? This thing isn’t going to write itself.”

Then persisting through everything to the end where the thing if finally published, often several YEARS later.

Kudos authors out there! I’ve tried doing it several days in a row, and even I started to lose hope around day 12. Which reminds me…

There was a guest post linked to a post of mine that was written by Michelle Jayne on Kasmin’s blog titled ” The Writer and the Tortise” (link here) which really resonated with me, that deals with a similar thought of perseverance and writing habits. You should check it out! 😛 


Fire – Element of power. Having the desire and drive for growth to achieve all that is possible within their ability.

This bit goes out to all of the May 2017 IBers out there, who are in a few hours about to recieve their scores and see if they got into university (including my younger brother).

Some of you will be elated about your scores, some will shrug it off, and some of you will be crushed.

This open letter of sorts is for the latter guys in particular, but applicable to all IBers and people entering university

“Where there is a will, there is a way” is a saying my former math teacher used to say.

Of course at the time it was to counter any of the (admittedly kinda pathetic) excuses we would all come up with for why our assignments were late. 

But, like most wise advise given to me, its true meaning doesn’t present itself until later.

Your score may feel like the end of the line, as measure of all the hard work you have done over the last two years. To that I say… its not.

Unlike pretty much all other exams in the world, IB is not a sprint, a few hour multiple choice quiz that is over in a flash. It is a pentathlon of suck that you are thrown into without any prior training… while sleep deprived… with CAS and TOK and a 4000 word research paper etc.

You have, over the past two years done everything from analyse translated literature, read passages in a second language, design your experiment, write a mathematical investigations, explore humanities subjects etc. And that is just the IAs. 

I speak from experience when I say that you have a leg up compared to your peers, and the first year of uni is nothing compared to IB. Everything from learning how to write a paper with proper citations, to volunteering in actives as a global citizen, to overcoming (or at least coping) with sleep deprivation etc are all skills that IB has left you with that a simple score isn’t going to show, but universities know about and consider. 

(well, except for USA unis who care more about AP and SAT. Then again you have already gotten in, so your IB grade doesn’t really matter at this point. so you don’t understand the terror of waiting til d-day)

In the end, your score doesn’t define you. 

Whether you sit down and give up, or brush yourself off and get up, does. 

I have a friend who thought their life was over when they got a 23 (later a 24 after remarking), but who still got into university to study film due to his hard work ethic, leadership skill and portfolio of work that the IB left them with.

It can be done! 

So no mater what score you get, Celebrate!

You now join our global community as an IB Alumni, and more importantly, an IB survivor 😛 ! Prepare yourself for all the lingering IB-isms, the “You know nothings” to the Pre-IB/ the Year 1’s,  silent “You poor unfortunate soul” nods you will give to the Year 2’s and the instant connections you get with other people who went through IB like you.

Good luck to all, with all your future endeavours!

 


On that note, I’ll catch you later!

Rebecca