I’m beginning to get the suspicion that every Caltech humanities class tries to find some excuse to go visit the Huntington. I’m not complaining though. I love the gardens. It gives me an excuse to get off campus and be surrounded by lush foliage like I was living in a different world. Even if only for a moment. This Huntington trip was a bit different, and sponsored by English 128, the contemporary Irish literature course I’m taking taught by Dean Gilmartin.
I decided to do a few things different this time. First, I got lunch at the noodle restaurant in the Chinese gardens. Solid food, 4/5 stars on Yelp. Two dollar signs. I got the seafood special which was a black pepper shrimp, along with some barbeque pork wontons which are pictured below. The plating was nice, but the flavors were a little salty and overpowering for me. And the shrimp didn’t taste quite right although I couldn’t put my finger on what was causing it. I’d been expecting a little better but what can you do.
Second, I went to the museum of science history. Or more properly I skipped to the lightbulb section. As I’m sure you’ve discovered by now, I have a fascination with light in whatever form it comes in, and the Huntington’s Edison bulbs were awesome, as were the fiber optic cables that they had strung from the ceilings.
Finally, I decided to explore two new regions of the gardens. I spent more time in the rainforest section, which was a trip down memory lane of the rainforest section I worked in at the zoo. It was also very reminiscent of Jurassic park. It’s funny how tropical gardens are like that. I also went to the lily ponds. There weren’t really too many lilies, but there were lots of koi. The koi also knew where they were normally fed, which you could tell by the little congregation they formed when you approached their pond.
Oh. And we saw some books. That might’ve been the purpose of the trip actually. The highlight for me was the signed copy of James Joyce’s Dubliners. Joyce embodies the way that I wish I could write. The beautifully crafted short story with the ending line that makes you rethink your life and your worldview. That’s something I’ve always aspired to.
When we think of Caltech and the Avengers, most of us would not make any sort of direct connections between the two. The only connection that comes to my mind is that many Caltech students enjoy Marvel and the Avengers. But what if we made another sort of connection. Where instead of Caltech students liking the Avengers, the Caltech students WERE the Avengers. If this was the case, what major would each Avenger be? (Note: For my emotional well-being, in this scenario, everyone is alive and happy with their lives at Caltech)
On May 8, the Washington Nationals came to Los Angeles Angels for a lovely Mother’s Day Game. I, being a D.C. native and avid Nationals fan, of course had to attend– the Nationals play the Angels very rarely because they play in different leagues and on opposite coasts. My dad and I have a goal of going to all 30 Major League Baseball stadiums, and we had to take advantage of our home team being in L.A., so my mom and dad both flew out for the weekend.
As I write this blog, I’m sitting on a grassy knoll on Pomona-Pitzer’s campus. It’s the last match of my final season of tennis here at Caltech. It’s definitely a bittersweet feeling to be done with my college tennis career (unless I decide to use my final year of NCAA eligibility, granted to athletes affected by the COVID-19 pandemic). Being a part of the women’s tennis team here has been a defining part of my identity and where I met my community on campus. In this blog, I want to discuss a bit of the process of becoming an NCAA athlete, the Caltech experience of handling schoolwork and a sport, and my take on how it affected my growth here.