August 2017

Blog and school28 Aug 2017 10:48 am


Things are definitely not boring!  The transition back to school has been hectic.  First off getting to Houston from San Diego has been an adventure.  The movers came to pick up my stuff from San Diego, and the price jumped up from $1700 to $2500 because I had more stuff then I was originally quoted.  They changed me for an extra storage pod.  I had extra items that weren’t listed, but I didn’t have huge items to pack. The biggest items I have are: my desk my TV/TV stand, a big book shelf, a dresser, my old wheelchair, a table with 4 chairs, a mattress/box spring, bed frame, and a few extra boxes.  I think on my quote I had listed 15 boxes, but some of my furniture (shelf, dresser) were classified as bigger than expected, jacking up the price. I don’t think I had that much stuff.

To make matters more complicated, the weather in Houston has been crazy! Rain and flooding is at a 500-year level high in Houston.  Luckily, I was able to take a Greyhound bus to Dallas on Friday to avoid the flooding in Houston.  Apparently the Brays Bayou by my place close to the med center floods frequently.  This sucks because I need to be in a first floor apparent due to the fact that there are no elevators for my scooter.  My place is probably flooded due to the storms.  Good thing is my stuff hasn’t arrived in Houston yet.  I’ve been calling to figure out where my stuff is, but they close at noon on Fridays.  I’ve left messages and am still waiting to hear back from them since Thursday.

The biggest dilemma for me is… when to return to Houston.  It is supposed to continue raining till Friday.   Navigating the city will be complicated if public transit is still down.  Maybe I invest in a canoe… seriously. Classes got cancel this week, they resume next Tuesday.  Hopefully, things will clear up (dry up) by then.  I wonder what the water levels will be like and when it will be safe to go back!  Turns out that the movers might charge me more for storing the items due to the inclimate weather.  We shall see.  I’m hoping to get my stuff soon when I return to Houston!  Moving and evacuation has definitely made this transition memorable.  I’ve been through tornados, earthquakes, fires, and now hurricanes and floods.  Lesson here is that if there a difficulties with physical mobility… get out early if you can to avoid potential issues…It helped that I knew some people outside of Houston.   I really would have sucked being stuck in Houston with no tv service, phone service, spotty internet, questionable power sources, and mobility impairment.  I really don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t gone to Dallas!  Thanks again Dave Chen, Becca Wong, and family!  We will see when my stuff finally arrives in Houston… first order of business when I get back to Houston is get a couch to sleep on… not a leather couch because I will stick to it!  School starts next week!  Stay tuned… I’m sure more exciting stuff is in the works.  It has been a very eventful 2 weeks!


Blog and Random blog16 Aug 2017 07:58 am

It has been a crazy transition to August. I had my first final in 14 years!  Crazy preparing for it.  I think my short term memory is horrible, but my long term memory is still very good.  Ask me if I remember specific scenes from the original Star Wars Trilogy… Anyways, I figured out that I have to commit things to long term memory to do well on exams/quizzes.  Problem is that the process of saving things to long term memory is a very intensive process… going over things thoroughly 4 or 5 times, instead of once or twice.  Couple minor short term memory impairments with the physical impairments of tremors/ataxia/minor double vison/ minor speech dysarthria and you have some major obstacles in the classroom.   Based on my experiences in the summer session at UCSD, I think they can be addressed:  Extra time to take quizzes/exams, use of a laptop, seating in the front of the classroom, and a note taker or presentation sharing.  Technology is great… I use my smart phone to set reminders/alerts and create “to do” lists to address short term memory lapses.  (Maybe I’m just getting older… hee hee hee…)

Anyways, I started cleaning out my place in San Diego this week and started shipping stuff to Houston.  Again, I get to be the new guy.  I’ve become very familiar with that role.  To me, it’s kind of exciting to start fresh and test yourself against new challenges.  It’s like starting with a clean slate… No body knows you, and you don’t know anybody.  I do know a few people in Houston, so the transition will be a little easier than my transition to San Diego from Michigan.  In San Diego, I was immersed with many peers in similar life stages developing their professional lives.  With this return to school in a new environment, I’m not so sure I’ll find people in similar life stages.  I’m gonna be the oddball. Professionally this move makes sense, but the task of finding new peers to hangout with might be challenging.

Developing a strategy for adapting to a new environment is half the excitement for me.  Planning and training feed my Type A Personality, but socially I’m very laid-back.  That is a very odd dynamic.  I like working with “Go-getters”, but I like to hangout with people who are “chill” and laugh at everything.  A strategy for a return to school is starting to form.  The goal is to publish more peer-reviewed articles.  I’ve published independent articles from my perspective, but I need to strengthen my scientific writing.

I’m leaving for Houston on Friday morning to start a new adventure!  I move into my apartment in Houston on Friday!  2 more days in San Diego!  Gotta grab a California Burrito and a Habit Burger before I leave!