By ◆ Juppie on Saturday, March 13, 2010 @ 4:11 PM


The title is inspired by a song by the Carpenters. Ever heard of that band? It's made up of two people, two siblings. The brother is still alive, but sadly, the sister died.

Rain doesn't normally upset me, and though I dislike Mondays, usually that won't depress me too much either. But last Monday wasn't an easy day, and it was a rainy day, so I thought it would make sense to use this title.

This past week, I've been gone on a school trip to Yosemite National Park, so I haven't been able to write anything. On Sunday morning, I boarded a bus headed to Yosemite. It's a pretty long drive there, probably four hours or more. I took a carsick pill called Dramamine to help me out with the carsickness.

I wonder if medicine really does work or not. Sometimes it's just people believe something will help them, and because of the positive feeling, their health seems to improve. I'm not sure whether medicine does any good or if it's only the "placebo effect". Perhaps the world may never know (like that thing about "How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie pop?).

Once I was at Yosemite, I had to adjust to a lot of things that I wasn't used to. For instance, dinner for me was at 5:05 pm, and breakfast at 7:05 am. I usually have breakfast not long from 8 am and I have dinner at around 7 pm. And I had to sleep with a sleeping bag, which I wasn't accustomed to, because I have never been camping. (Which is good - I don't think I could put up with going to the bathroom in the Great Outdoors for long XD) But the sleeping bag wasn't too bad, it was actually kind of cozy. It got too hot, though, when the heater was on in my cabin.

I kind of expected it to be like science camp. At science camp, you didn't need an alarm clock because someone would wake you up if you didn't get up on your own. There was a bathroom that was fairly clean and it was conveniently located, so you wouldn't have to get up in the night, wake someone up, and walk through the snow or melting puddles. You wouldn't hike so much that you'd be really tired and you'd always have your time managed well for you. And you didn't need to get a lot of gear, not even hiking boots were required.

Yosemite is sort of similar, but sort of not. The food is in buffet form (that's nice, since I can just a get a little to try something and see if I like it first). You're expected to meet up with people at a certain time (though there's almost always someone missing or late). You have to manage your own time to be able to complete a journal, take showers, and get enough sleep. And there is a lot of hiking and climbing and other physical activity.

Monday was a hard day for me. I am a special case since my cabin mates are in a different rotation than I am (meaning that they had different meal times and different evening programs). I was really stressed waiting for them in my cabin, and I kept thinking that something horrible must've happened to them (I didn't realize back then that their evening program was later than mine). I was also annoyed about the cold showers and stinky bathroom. And it was really noisy at nighttime, making it hard to sleep. I got really homesick, thinking of my parents and comfort and having a dependable routine. And this homesickness didn't really go away. During science camp I was having such a blast that I didn't think of my home much.

On Monday, there were many kinds of weather. We had rain, then hail, and then even snow. The snow is beautiful, that's for sure. But it was hard to appreciate when I was so worried and stressed. I wasn't able to relax until maybe about Wednesday or Thursday. By then I realized that I would be going home soon, and so I was in a much better mood. (Kind of funny how sometimes you have to be waiting for something to enjoy yourself.)

There were a lot of things I didn't like about the trip, but there were things that made it better, too. Things that made me dry my tears and smile and put my best foot forward. Being outdoors was great. I didn't really hike much or even go outside that much before. I thought I'd be tired easily from hiking. It's true that I was usually pretty worn out from lugging around a heavy backpack (too used to the roller backpack by now) but I wasn't lagging too horribly behind, either. And seeing the mountains and waterfalls and getting the occasionally opportunity to sit by myself and think was calming for me. I also got to try so many new things, like eating hummus (never tried it before, but it wasn't bad), eating celery (also wasn't as bad as I thought), eating sunbutter (yes, I'm eating lots of new things. Sunbutter is like peanut butter but made from sunflower seeds), and going cross-country skiing... I'm really starting to realize that I don't need to have limits, boundaries, things holding me back. I can do my best and achieve so much more. I just have to be openminded and live life to the fullest. After all, even if you have more than one life, you'll never remember the past ones, so of course you have to do everything that you can.

Oh, and going on the trip makes you appreciate home. Many of us longed for warm showers. I also heard some students saying they missed eating rice (they had rice at the buffet, but it was like fried rice and things like that. No sushi, dumplings, or miso soup, that's for sure). I believe that going to Yosemite was a good experience for me, even if I still feel there would've have been a lot of room for improvement. (I heard there was a bathroom with ants in it.) It's something you'll remember forever, after all.

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