Thursday, June 20, 2013

Week 3: Laser Light Show in the Cafeteria

So, last Friday, after work, all the interns, except F, who hadn’t arrived yet, went to the Symphony. We decided to eat dinner before because Dy’s friend suggested a Chinese restaurant in the basement of the Watergate hotel. The Watergate is across the street from the Kennedy Center where the symphony was. Sadly, we got to the restaurant and discovered that it had closed down the week before, so we grabbed some pizza before heading over to the concert.

The concert was the National Symphony Orchestra with David Hardy on the cello. I got to sit on the side with the harp. I couldn’t see super well, but the harpist is amazing. Her name is Dotian Levalier and she studied with Carlos Salzedo and Marilyn Costello. That’s amazing! She has played for the National symphony for 44 years and she is retiring this year. It reminded me of how much I love playing harp. I hope I can find a harp shop in DC where I can go play a harp sometime.

I went to bed early Friday night so that I could meet up with my friend, Julie, in the morning.  She came in from the West Falls Church Metro Station and I hopped on her same car at Foggy Bottom at about 8:30 so we could go to Easter Market. We got BlueBucks, or blueberry buckwheat pancakes, which are apparently famous. They were really good. We then walked around the market. There was so much fresh produce; I wanted to buy it all! We were heading to a museum after, so I couldn't buy anything.

We decided to walk from Eastern Market to the Newseum. We walked past the Capitol Building and the Library of Congress. We also walked past a soap car derby down Capitol Hill. It was super cool to watch. We got to the Newseum a little before the other interns. It was a really cool experience, but it is quite pricey. I don’t know that it is worth going to again. They do have a really cool hall of the front page of newspapers on important days around the world. They also had a really cool exhibit on the FBI and another one on 9/11.

We were getting hungry, so Julie, A, R and I went to the Museum of the Native American Indian and had lunch. They have a cafeteria with traditional Native American foods. I had salmon, with a corn and cherry sauce. It was delicious. We grabbed ice cream at the ice cream truck outside before walking down the national mall. A little way down, we found a metro station and headed home, where we chilled for the rest of the evening.

Sunday, I went to church, like usual. The air conditioning was still broken, so it was sweltering the whole time, but I felt more included this week. R met me after church and he played some piano on the church pianos. It was beautiful! He is an amazing pianist, he could be professional. After he played for a while, I went home and skyped my family. Oh, and our final intern arrived, F. It will be fun to get to know her in the next few weeks.

Monday started my third week of work. What? How did that happen? We had our first outreach on Tuesday at Tuckahoe Elementary, so Monday was our day to prepare. It was midafternoon when we were starting to feel ready for the three, one hour classes of 40 third graders the next morning. Then Toni got a message from our Tuckahoe Elementary contact. Because it was the last week of school, they only had time for one hour with all 120 third graders. Eeeek! Some of the activities we were planning on doing would be chaos with that large of a group.

We had to decide if we still wanted to do the outreach. We decided we wanted to and we modified our activity, so that instead of measuring the length of the room with different sized sticks, they would measure the lengths of equally long ropes. We kept the LED vs. Laser demonstration we had used before and the laser-sound demonstration. It was a little thrown together, but we felt like we could pull it off when we left on Monday.

Tuesday, we arrived early to set up the cafeteria. R, J, CA, C, Toni and I did the outreach. It went really well. I was surprised at how excited the kids were about measuring rope. They were really smart kids and I saw multiple methods for measuring. It was great. They were very involved and I think they had a good time and learned a lot. It could have been better organized on our part, but I was really happy with how well it went.

Toni took us out to eat at Busboys and Poets, which was really good. It is very hip and quite delicious. Our server, Noel, was super awesome and we shared quite a few laughs with her over the course of the meal. The rest of the afternoon and week was spent working on pricing and models for the rest of our kits.

On Monday evening, we decided to get some Mexican food. Clearly, I can’t read a map, because it told me that the food was only a mile away from us, but it was more like two. Oops! It was pretty good though, and it was fun to bond with J, F, D, and R. It was weird because we were the only patrons in the restaurant, which was a little unnerving.

Tuesday evening, I went to institute. The BYU Barlow Center is really close to my dorms, so I walked there and had a nice lesson. I think it is really good for me to involve myself in more church activities. The rest of the week has been pretty chill.

I went to work early on Wednesday because I wanted to stop at the bank before it closed. It was really nice to have the office to myself to get a few things done. I think I will come in earlier a few more times in the next few days. On the way home from the bank, I was stopped by a man from England named Gionne (I think?) who was talking to me about donating to a charity to help children go to school and to have better food and water. He was really nice and it seems like a really good charity, but I am a little uncomfortable with signing up for something so spontaneously. It was a pleasure to talk to him.

I went home from work early on Thursday because I wasn’t feeling well, which is a bummer. Hopefully, I am not catching something and just need a little more sleep. Anyway, it has been a fun week. I am really excited for the adventures to come. Pretty soon it will be July and I will be working at NIST. Crazy!

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