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Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Houston here we come!

2 a.m. I woke up exited and ready to leave. I took a 5 minute shower and drank water. I grabbed my luggage and left with my parents after them asking about all the things I needed. I was energized and feeling really good. I got to El Cerrito high school and I was the second one there, after Don of course. I got down and we got down to business. My parents signed the last things they needed to sign and so did I.
Time To Leave!

Not too much longer after my arrival came Justeen. She had a smile on her face and was cheerful! That made me feel awesome since she's in the same program as me. With a big smile on my face I told her "we're the first ones here! Yay for physics!" After U.S. Everyone else arrived within 30 minutes. They were really long 30 minutes with John being last. As soon as john arrived, don got down to business and told us all he had to tell us before we left. Justeen's mom noticed my umbrella on my carry on and she saved me from having to leave them and lotion I had in there. I am very thankful to her for the reminder! Then we took a picture with all of our cohort, helped don clean and got on the shuttle after saying our last goodbyes.

On the shuttle we had a short ride on the back seats, jun, Joanne and I talked about amine we loved. I brought out snacks to share but no one wanted any so I put them away after eating a little bit. We got to Oakland airport to wait in lines Joanne, Justeen and I got through the screening line together through random talked about why they did the checking and such, I am having a blast! So happy to have such a great cohort they are all awesome in their own way and everyone is really nice! We waited till 5:45 And hot on the Plane where we sat wherever we wanted, since we were having such a good time waiting in line Justeen, Joanne and I sat together. We watched the beautiful California sunrise for the last time before we left finally the plane took off and it has begun!
Take Off!

On the plane ride we were sleepy and so we all took a nap. I kept waking up to check outside the window with beautiful views. I woke up to turbulence after sleeping for a while we were passing through a cloud and I couldn't see much out the window. Once it cleared up I asked for some water and stared outside the window. Everything looked really flat and dead unlike Cali. For about 10 minutes all I could see was dried rives and flat dead land, until we passed by a river that was flowing. Like a desert paradise civilization and life flourished at the sides of it it was all so fascinating and new to me. I had not been on a plane since I came from El Salvador when I was eight years old. 

When we finally reached Huston we got diverted to San Antonio because of the thunderstorm on top of the field where we were supposed to land. It was a big hit for our cohort since it seemed like we wouldn't make it. With John angry and disappointed because of this we were all devastated. We arrived at San Antonio about 40 minutes after they announced that our flight was being diverted. We were in San Antonio for what seemed like ages. We were all disappointed but we made the best out of it because nothing could ruin our amazing experience! 

We finally took off again to Huston, at 1:40 pm it was a relief since we had been on the plane for almost 6 hours. We had missed the tour and it was sad but we were all together and well and in good mood. 

FINALLY!!!! We harrived at Huston at 2:15 pm. Everyone is exited to have finally reached their destination after the very long delay. We gathered together and agreed to eat after we checked in at the hotel. We waited for our luggage meanwhile john went to get the shuttle ready. John came back with snacks and we devoured it since the flight took so long and we hadn't had breakfast. We got out luggage and went to the shuttle. Once we stepped outside the warmth and humidity was the first thing I noticed. It is really warm and humid in Huston, it reminded me of the tropical forest at the Exploratorium in SF. It made me feel blessed to live in California. 

The ride from the shuttle to the hotel was really nice, we got a mini tour of the rice university's campus from the nice driver. We saw streets with really nice houses that had the U.S. and Texas's flags on every lawn. Once we got to the hotel and got out the shuttle we were supposed to check on and go take a walk around Rice's campus but by the time we checked in and came back down after dropping off our luggage the weather had taken a turn for the worse And so we all had another meeting and said we would all meet at the lobby at 5:15

My Room For The Night

My Room
My Room
I came back to my room which I had to myself, it was quite big two beds, two televisions, one big deal, four couches, one computer chair, and two bathrooms, one bath. It was awesome. I had almost an hour to myself so I took the computer out put some pus of for myself and made some tea. I got the bath ready and hopped in. I used the soap and shampoo to make a bubble bath. I cleaned up and got ready to leave for dinner. When I got down everyone was eating dinner here at the hotel's restaurant it was surprisingly elegant. I was late and everyone was already getting the food they ordered. I tried the appetizers that were left and they were quite good. Although they were spicy they were still tasty and not smoking hot. I ordered what Justeen ordered because it looked fantastic. We ate and had a really fun time talking about TV shows and listening to John speak about the past ILC experiences. It was an awesome bonding activity.
First Dinner on the Road

The bonding activities didn't stop there! After we all ate dinner and and got the really fabulous ketchups we decided to go and walk around the campus for a bit! And so we took off to our rooms to bring whatever we needed for the trip, I brought a poncho and an umbrella which I let jun borrow because she didn't bring one. It was awesome! We had a lot of fun just walking around the campus and looking at the beautiful buildings. There was a trampoline and a lot of places where you could go and study. Such a beautiful campus it is. There are even (what we believe) wild rabbits that aren't scared of people. A bit like the squirrels from California. It was awesome and so before we knew it we were a bit lost in front of a beautiful water fountain where we met Joshua Lunow who was kind enough to help us out with a map and some questions we asked him. It was getting late and we were exhausted so we started to head back. We walked through a structure that was built for the soul purpose of art. Then we walked through the student music department, which was beautiful, and saw the baseball stadium. We then had a muddy walk to the hotel filled with laughter and fun we made it back and all exhausted already, headed back up to our rooms to sleep and be rested for tomorrow morning.

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