Sunday, September 02, 2018

Summer 2018

It has been a long time since the last post.
It is better for my brain to write long sentences for a blog than posting on Facebook or Twitter, but FB and Twitter are too convenient, which is one of the ways of killing humans brains. We are leading ourselves to extinction by making ourselves weaker and weaker to wild nature. The mental and physical separation between us and nature has been growing further and further.

Anyway, I think I would chronologically record here the main events happened from January 2018 up to today.

In January.
I took a short winter hiking class called "Winter Wondering." The class had about 15 people and I was the only old woman except for the instructor. All others were traditional students. It was another life-changing experience for me - actually the encounter with two biology professors last year is my treasure. This class was offered by one of the professors. I took this class because I wanted to spend time with her as long as I can. I seriously thought I would be majoring in biology if I have met them in the first year of my university. But unfortunately, it happened in my last year which prolongs my time of graduation if I changed the major, and I was exhausted from studying to achieve high GPA to receive scholarships.

We hiked 3-4 days a week in the month. In January 2018, we had an unusually low temperature, though, hikings were done. I was very happy to know my ability of 13 miles hike at my age.

Beginning of January.
My friend from Japan made a trip to Florida, so I met her there. We rented a car and drove around the Universal studio, cocoa beach, Dali museum, ... etc. We stayed in Florida for 5 days. It was a lot of fun. I am always happy to talk in Japanese. I spoke like a machine gun.
Also, walking around exposing my heels made a unique memory. I got a big blister on my each heel from hiking in the first-second day, I had to dry them constantly to make it heal as quick as possible so that I could continue hiking. I had a pair of sneaker type shoes that do not have a heel, so folded the heel part of socks into the sole, exposed my blisters to the air, walked everywhere I went in Florida including the airports. When I got home, I got nice hiking shoes that do not hit my hot spot, so I was able to continue hiking.

On February 1, R and I married. I had never experienced the process of marriage in the US, I thought it was complicated. We were waiting for my graduation to marry since I was receiving grants and scholarships, we did not want to mess up my status. I finished all of the requirements for my B.S. degree in December 2017. So, the time finally came. It has been 7 months of being married, nothing has been changed. Yesterday, R got our favorite cream puff to celebrate our 7 months anniversary.

Because my university conducts commencement only once a year, I had an extra semester. In the extra spring semester, one of the philosophy professors let me sit in his class, I enjoyed joining a class without worrying about grades. The class, Philosophy of Religion, was fun. I am interested in religion not as a practitioner, but as the aspect of human's way of understanding the world. I think it is ridiculous to try to prove God's existence scientifically, but the arguments read in the class gave me some insightful thoughts because they could easily be applied to life even though they were arguing about God.

On May 20, I finally graduated. I got a B.S. degree in Psychology, and Environmental Science (minor). R says nobody cares about your minor, but I found my love is for biology and environmental science more than psychology, so I like to add my minor when I talk about my degree. Psychology was interesting to study but it cannot be practical to me. At least, it gave me some ideas of people who I should avoid though. It is more interesting in talking about brains and hormone as chemicals produced determine our behaviors than observing just behaviors.

Finally, Summer! The season of gardening.
My garden is getting interesting more and more as a place of learning and producing food. I feel I am using a lot of knowledge through my education that I received in order to enjoy my garden in many ways as R call our garden "your laboratory"; they all are coming together. I am very happy about this.

This year, I tried to have diversity in my garden. I planted different kinds of plants randomly so that it can create habitats for many kinds of organisms. My garden was visited by many birds and butterflies that I did not see last year. Also, I was able to manage pests better than last year.

My milkweeds have many Monarch's babies now from tiny ones to big ones.

R and I enrolled the Master Gardening program from Virginia Cooperative Extention this fall. After the program, I can have a "title" of me as a master gardener other than a quilter. I was always confused about what I should say about me when I was asked: "What do you do?"

Only 4 months left until 2019 comes. Time really passes so quickly.