Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Failure, Discovery, and Disappointment

We were finally looking at the plasmids we transferred into cells today. In order to find out what kinds of plasmid were the unknowns, we had to run gel electrophoresis. Because we had to run three controls, two unknowns uncut, and two unknowns cut, the process was complicated. We had to add in many different materials and went through many steps. Toward the end, I almost lost my spot in the process. I thought that my result would be as good as the one before, but it was not. The image of the gel looked really unusual, but I still did not figure out what I did wrong during the process. I will ask Jody tomorrow.

Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology
After class, as usual, I went to lunch. Today was the third day of my Providence discovery trip. I went to the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology of Brown University, Providence Art Club, and lastly Athenaeum. Haffenreffer Museum was located at the Quiet Green, which was easy to locate. I walked in,  and I saw a showcase with many antiques from different cultures/countries, including Nigeria, China, Mexico, and many more. I saw through every item closely, and each of them had its own characteristics that I was attracted by. They all fully showed the spirit of each culture; the expression, uses of colors, and gestures all represented the distinctions of each culture. Walked further in, I saw two bears that represented Brown University. More and more historical items of Brown University showed up, including the flags, the photos, videos, the president's regalia and even the university mace. On the other side, the museum exhibited the handicrafts and objects related to lives of people in the Grassland, which referred to the highlands of northwestern Cameroons. Finishing touring the museum, I felt like I walked back into both the past of Brown University and the Grassland.
One Part of the Exhibition

Providence Art Club
Walked out the museum, I soon felt the heat and humidity. With the unfamiliarity with the roads, I walked extra distance and finally arrived at the Art Club. I walked upstairs and saw many paintings hanging on the wall. I kept walking through hallways, up and down stairs, and turned several times. In the confusing maze-like space, I could always see art besides me. As I walked, I looked right and left, and saw numerous inspiring pieces of arts created by materials ranging from acrylic, crayon, oil, wood, steel, and to woolen, with the topics of nature, people, animals, flowers, and animals. I could not get enough of them. I met a gentleman who worked there (I forgot to ask his name), and he volunteered to be a private tour guide for me. He said that this gallery was built in 1802, and could be said as the first art club in America. It was originally a house of twelve people. He showed me the original location of the kitchen, the living room, and the studying room. These rooms were not big. He also pointed the original chairs, tiles, walls, and even stairs that were preserved until now. It was really amazing.

Inside of the Library
Continuing my tour, I could really said that I had no sense of direction. I passed Athenaeum, but I did not know I even walked down the street and asked people if they know where it was. No one could tell me. I did not give up; I walked back and forth, and magically found it. The inside was beautiful. Many book bookshelves stood in front of me, and the history even made the place more meaningful. Even though the facilities seemed somehow old, the feeling of touching historical preservation made me feel wonderful. I went upstairs, and I could hear the squeek sound while I walked up. I also went downstairs. I enjoyed every part of the library tour, except the feeling of hot. Unfortunately, I sprang my ankle when I walked down the stairs because of my carelessness. It still hurts.

I was planning on going back to dorm, but when I found out it was only three thirty, I decided to explore more. I went to Steinert Center for the piano practice room. There were many private piano practice rooms, and I went into room number ten. I pressed the first key, and the tune was off. Despite that, I kept playing and enjoyed the melody of my own playing until I forgot what was the next note. With the lack of practice for a long time, it was hard to think of some pieces I could play. I tried to look online, but it did not work out. I was disappointed by myself, I gave up, and I went back to dorm with my injured left foot.

I rest for almost two hours, and I went to have the first dinner with white rice in the dining hall. I attended Partner Scholar Program meeting afterward. I met Kisa, and she still remembered us! In the meeting, we talked about social classes in colleges, and things to be aware as first-generation college students, which did not apply to me. Although the target of the meeting was not me, I still met new people and had realization that social classes would be apparent in college lives, and that I would have to adapt to it.

After I got back to dorm, our cluster had the last get-together meeting. We wrote each other things we wanted to say to each other. The feeling of separating was getting real. Marie asked us to answer three questions: what did us expect before we came, what did we learn, and what we would miss. I wanted to learn new things, experience college life, and meet new people, which I all accomplished. I will definitely miss the freedom and people I met here. I still have two days, and I will cherish the time, definitely. 

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