Emily’s Campus Journal
Spring break was incredible this year. Here is a little overview of my amazing trip!
Saturday, March 24th
Andrew picked me up from school after my track meet (blog on that later) we turned North on I5, ooops. Turned around… and… now we were headed in the right direction! We were off! We listened to some good road trippin’ music and talked for a few hours until will pulled into our first destination, Beachside State Park! We were right next to the ocean and we fell asleep listening to the waves and croaking frogs
Sunday, March 25th
Awoke, ate some oatmeal (with walnuts, bananas and brown sugar). Then we wandered to the beach. We were so close! We played on the shore for awhile, managed not to get too wet! Then we packed up camp and headed out for the rest of the day’s adventures. We drove south along the Oregon coastal highway and we stopped at Devil’s churn and played by some tide pools. Andrew poked one with a stick but didn’t get his desired results. We headed up to an information place and looked for whales! We sadly couldn’t see any, but someone said that there were a bunch in the bay not too long before we got there. After this, we went on a great run along the Oregon coastal trail and then through some old growth forest. It was gorgeous. Andrew out-sprinted me to the car and won (it didn’t count of course because I had raced the day before and had the excuse of tired legs). We continued south until we got to the Heceta head lighthouse and we hiked up to check it out. It was gorgeous but it was pouring rain. We were just a little soaked but we managed to warm up quickly in the car. We pulled into our campsite for the evening, Umpqua lighthouse State Park, to set up camp. That night made a ton of chili and cornbread. We wandered to the lighthouse which apparently looks like a disco ball and saw a really great sunset. It was a great day.
Monday, March 26th
We had a really beautiful morning! The sun was out and we made some really great breakfast quesadillas. After moseying around the campgrounds for a little while we packed up once again and headed south towards Bandon. On our way to Bandon we stopped at Eel Lake and walked a short way around it. SO BEAUTIFUL. The sun was shining and the lake reminded me of small inland lakes back home (Michigan). We saw a little sandbar and a perfect log in the sun so we waded out and soaked up some sun for a little while before continuing with our trip. When we got to Bandon we went for a run in some serious headwinds. The run was saved by the pretty dunes and the fact that it felt so good to stretch our legs. We wanted to go out for seafood while we were on the coast and we found a really authentic place to do just that! The place was called Griffs on the Dock. It was literally “on the dock.” Andrew had his first crab and only flung crab bits around a little. After dinner we were heading to our campsite for the evening but had to stop at Cape Blanco first. Google pictures. It was so incredibly gorgeous. That night we camped in a really windy campsite by Humbug Mountain.
So this is getting pretty long. I will make a part 2 soon.
Last Saturday after our morning workout for track I went into lab to work on some spider DNA type things. It was my last Saturday before track meets start. From here on out I will have a meet every weekend until late May. I love track meets but yuck! I really wanted to do something exciting so my friend who is the Lab Technician in the spider lab said, “Lets go to the coast!” and that is what we did.
Long story short, it was awesome.
We arrived in Astoria, OR in Ft. Stevens State Park right before the sunset. We got out and ran around on the beach and tried to eat a little food but struggled because it was so darn windy! We could also see some rain coming so we got into Andrew’s car and drove around on the beach! We almost ran out of gas, but it was totally worth it. It is so awesome to just leave and go to the coast! Lewis and Clark is awesome in that way.
So anyway, after it got dark we went and found a coffee shop/restaurant type place and played cards, banagrams and ate brownies. It was perfect. Also, because I predicted the time we arrived home perfectly (10:39, right on the dot!), Andrew owes me a bottle of wine. Because Ringo Starr is alive (I thought he was dead), I owe Andrew some gingerbread. Strange wagers occur during small road trips, can’t wait until spring break…
So, I was right about this semester being crazy busy. This weekend was a welcome-back-to-real-life type of weekend. I cleaned my room and did laundry and feel caught up on the happenings of real life. I have had a great few weeks regardless of the craziness. For example:
CROSS COUNTRY SKIING!!!!
I spend a lot of time in the basement of our science building working in the spider lab. We have a lot of fun though, this manifests itself in many ways but primarily by an awesome ski trip last weekend. Mt. Hood is extremely gorgeous. I can see it all the time from certain places around the city and on our campus but actually being there was too awesome for me to handle. Growing up in the Midwest (pancake flat) I get so excited every time I even glimpse mountains in the distance.
We had the best day ever! We skied all morning after a beautiful drive up to the mountain then played banana grams in a coffee shop then headed up to timberline lodge (Check it out) and had the best hot chocolate I have ever consumed. Really delicious chocolate base with toffee bits, whipped cream and a cinnamon stick : )
Other ways of having fun in lab include the following….
Even more fun includes spontaneous trips to the coast but more on that later.
We have completed two weeks of school already and I am very excited for the semester ahead! This spring I am taking the history of modern Africa, the second semester of intro physics, microbiology and an independent study course. Along with being a member of the Track and Field team, the SAAC (student athlete advisory committee) representative for ASLC (Associated Students of Lewis and Clark, i.e. student government) and hopefully interacting with the animal club as much as I have time for! Whoo… yeah, I definitely have a busy semester ahead!
For my independent study I am working in the Binford spider lab on campus and I will be studying the genus Loxosceles specifically. I will (hopefully) help piece together these spiders’ evolutionary history in the Caribbean! My work will be one small piece to a very large and complex puzzle that many collaborators are working to assemble, specifically Dr. Greta Binford (Oregon professor of the year!) and Ingi Agnarsson a professor at the University of Puerto Rico.
Here is a website with more information if you are interested on the island biogeography project! http://www.islandbiogeography.org/caribbean.html
Sidenote: Has anyone seen Lewis and Clark’s website’s front page lately?!? Seriously? It is so full of awesome achievements!
- A student is directing a super bowl commercial at 21 years of age. The youngest director of a super bowl commercial ever! Watch for it!
- We were rated at the top of the Peace Corps Top Colleges List
- U.S. News & World Report ranked Lewis & Clark 15th in the nation for liberal arts colleges with the best undergraduate teaching
- We have Oregon’s professor of the year, Dr. Binford!
- The women’s basketball team is ranked 7th in the nation for division III schools!
I would not be surprised if there were many more awesome things going on. Way to go pios!
A lot has happened since my last post. Mainly, winter break. A quick recap includes seeing lots of family, being in the snowless Midwest and being on “cat status” as I like to call it. Cat status means that other than my daily run I do the same activities as my wonderful cat. We nap in sun rays, eat, then repeat. Needless to say, it was awesome.
It is also awesome to be back in Portland! My back to school experience began with the MLK Day of Service on Monday. I moaned and groaned a little bit because when I signed up months ago I wasn’t really aware of the 7am meeting time…I am very glad that I participated and had a really good experience despite the early wake-up.
We gathered on campus and bussed to Roosevelt High School. Roosevelt High School is experiencing a dramatic turnaround that has seen graduation rate rise from 39% to 85% in the last year! This high school was characterized by poverty and very large numbers of students electing not to attend because of the rumored “dangerous hallways.” In spite of the adversity facing the faculty, staff and students they have completely turned Roosevelt high school into an institution that believes that secondary education is a civil right and are working really hard to not only help their students graduate but attend some form of secondary education.
After arriving we filed into their gym for a rally to begin the day. The RHS drum line played, The principal spoke, the superintendent, some alumni, there was a spoken word performance of the “I Have a Dream” speech, the mayor of Portland Sam Adams and the Oregon Secretary of State Kate Brown spoke. Turns out that this MLK Day of Service is a big deal! We were the largest mobilization of college students in the nation to take part in MLK related service on Monday. Nine colleges and universities around Portland took part and we had around 1200 student volunteers!
There were so many things to do, everything from landscaping work to knitting for teen parents. I was assigned to a group that made signs to hang on every student’s locker encouraging them and congratulating them on the work they have done. We also wrote notes, as college students, encouraging them and reinforcing the importance of education.
My sister is a champion for education equality, working at an education non-profit in Phoenix, AZ, so I put a little extra elbow grease into it for her.
The whole day was aimed at serving, honoring MLK, and exploring education as a civil right in Portland. It was a really cool experience and I was glad that myself and 50, or so, other Lewis and Clark students could help out. This experience also reminded me how lucky I am to have grown up in a household that placed education as a very high priority and that it was never “if” I went to college but “where.” Also, having great public schools in my area in Michigan, that was really nice.
So, as you may have noticed from other posters, its finals week. However… I am done! WOOO! My exams were hard but I think they went well. In two days I will be home cuddling with my cat and dog. I cannot wait! It is going to be so awesome to turn my brain off for awhile.
Anyway, I thought you might want to see a video of a few of us that are done with our school work. We were a little burnt out and needed to dance off everything we crammed into our heads in the previous week.
I now am proud to present to you some of my wonderful friends and neighbors: Daniel, Alli and Illana
You should really check out that link, it is worth your while (and its short, I promise)
Congratulations to all who have finished finals and good luck to those still in the process!