Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Living from one test to another

We learned the equivalent page volume of 7 weeks of anatomy for our 3 week cell bio test, whew, what a brain drain! Thus, we all celebrated with a much deserved sushi buffet- so delicious and just hit the spot for my Asian food craving. We drove out 10 miles just for the occasion which involved running across highways and jogging across parking lots just to reach the destination! As a vegetarian, I was still happy with the selection and of course I was delighted with the red bean and green tea icecream for dessert. We were all in good moods, and not quite ready to start our second cell path segment just yet...
Large group made it out!
Yeah, I was in heaven :).

Our class is really social, so we also visited 3 different election night gatherins, all which were very fun. The excitement that night was contagious!
I wore blue and red for the occasion.
undergrads begin rioting, med students join in!
After a week of Indian summer weather and intense studying indoors (boo), we emerged to enjoy the weekend only to find it had turned.. freezing! Nevertheless we hit up Pittsburgh Neighborhood Narratives, a film of short films of different areas of Pittsburgh (Think "Paris, Je t'aime, and go culture yourself if you haven't seen that). The last screening (we just made it!) was held at a bar called FireHouse in the Strip District (where one of the short films was centered around).
We enjoyed free gourmet popcorn, yum

Many of the short film makers made it there and talked about their work! it was a great show

And into November ...

The thing about med school is that tests often fall on Mondays and you start a new section on Tuesday- so you can always be learning.. and burnt out. This also leads to somewhat lame weekends before exams, but I never let that common perception stop me from doing new, fun things.

So the Friday before our 1st cell and path test was Halloween. Mirat and I played it pretty chill, but our friends got us to go out for a late night bite to eat in Oakland. We arrived, dressed up, and were the only ones who had done so.. and thus were ridiculed. Some great costumes were around that night- several Michael Phelps, Sarah Palins, and Joe the Plumbers :).
Mirat is a cat burgular...hehe
The crew goes to Fuel and Fuddle in Oakland to celebrate Halloween

Pitt Arts is amazing, and I got tix to see the ballet, Great Gatsby for $15, including a gourmet cupcake reception where we got to hear the artistic director of Pitt Ballet talk about the production. It was a really classy night, and the perfect study break. The ballet itself was very different, I wasn't a huge fan of all the 1920s music they used, but it was "interesting" and entertained me.

The performance hallGirls night out to the ballet!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Spooky October

The weekend after our anatomy final we drove off to nearby Philly (5 hours, I forget how long this state is) to the national APAMSA (Asian Medical Students Association) conference. Pitt paid for the whole thing! It was a great weekend of learning how medical issues take into account ethnicity and networking with students from all over the country! I was really pleased to see quite a few recent MIT alums at the conference, it really is a small world! We took the last day off to explore Philly, I love all the historical monuments and houses the city has. We visited Liberty Bell, Betsy Ross' house, and old city. Of course, no Asian medical conference weekend would be complete with out a last meal in Chinatown!

The APAMSA delegation from Pitt with our faculty adviser, Dr. Lee

Girls in front of the Liberty Bell
Cell Bio is our new block and we are now learning a lot of old stuff (cell cycle, growth factors) mixed with new. In particular, we learn pathology, and are able to identify lots of different cell types from slides. It's a lot of brute memorization, which makes it hard to study for long hours, but they do try to put many clinical references and cases in our course work.

The weekend after APAMSA, I had a booked schedule! I participated in my first ever flag football game (I went to 2 practices where I looked like a fool doing drills around the field and trying to catch a football), but when the big day came for us to play against the MS2 girls, I was pumped! Our team did great, we ended up losing (only by a bit), and so much of our class came out to cheer. Despite the rain, it was a great time :D.
Team spirit, like our shirts? (photo by Josh Levenson)

After the game I carved pumpkins with the elderly, to give the geriatrics field a try. It was a fun event, but definitely difficult to see how some elderly no longer could talk to or understand me.
Our beautiful pumpkins!

Still pumped from the APAMSA conference, we held out annual Diwali event for Pitt Med. We had such great MS1 attendance and everyone enjoyed the performances, dancing and food. Natalie and I had helped organize performances for this and it was rewarding to see so many people at the event.
Aren't we a good looking bunch? APAMSA board at Diwali
Diwali- festival of lights!

Continuing on with my booked Satudray- I ran over to the med school dorms to visit my dear friend Amy. She's like a mom to all of us and had a caramel making event. The caramel apples were DELICIOUS, we dunked em in crushed walnuts and M and Ms. Thank you Amy!

I love this New England type stuff!