a string to connect pieces of my life

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

career fair: day 2

Today was not that bad. I talked to a few companies. Some conversation went quite well. Although I know I could have done better preparation, it is what it is now.

A lot of work needs to be done tonight. Go to some companies' websites to apply online in order to show that I am really interested in them. Email a couple of people who might be able to find me any potential employer. Every single task takes me forever to assure the effectivity, or at least to assure I won't totally screw up.

This afternoon started my birthday in China. Actually now is approximately when I was born. Brian and Ciara had dinner with me tonight to celebrate it. The waiter was nice. He understood the time delay between China and US and gave us a free dessert. Brian paid the whole bill for us, which was really sweet of him. (You are the best, B.F.E.!)

Knowing that my friends care about me definitely lifted up my spirit quite a bit. It had been sinking for too long.

Monday, September 25, 2006

career fair: day 1

I knew the career fair was going to be frustrating, but this morning really sucked. I can't really blame anybody else, because I am sure I wasn't in the right status. I didn't even bother to introduce much about myself. So it's quite understandable that the two people I talked to didn't show much interest.

In the afternoon, after being comforted and cheered up by Rui and Brian, I stopped by another two companies. Although there was little chance they are going to give me an interview due to the nature of my degree level, my major and the citizenship requirement, I felt much better because I at least tried my best.

Right now I started to see more clearly what kind of job I want. I am not afraid of hard-working, but I don't want some dull job which makes me feel I am wasting the rest of my life. I want to work with people who are smart. For this reason, oil companies are very attractive to me.

Again, I don't have any choice. So what I will get is what I will have.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

job, job, job

Tomorrow begins the career fair. I am sitting here browsing through the very few companies who would like to hire a mechanical engineering + PhD + foreign student.

For me, the most important thing is what they want instead of what I want, because I really don't have many choices. I would be very lucky if I can get one or two campus interviews out of the next two days standing in the long line and selling myself within 3 minutes of talking to the recruiter.

Whenever I do job-hunting preparation, I can't help feeling that I were a kid trying to play the rules defined by the strange world. I just can't get totally serious about it.

But nothing will change no matter how I think of it. So I better get some homework done. Everyone wish me good luck!

Thursday, September 21, 2006


This morning I was supposed to take a 9:40am flight back to Michigan. However, we were informed that the airplane had some mechanical problem and was stuck somewhere else.

Everytime I hear "mechanical problem", I know it won't be a sure thing that it can be fixed soon. The staff were fully aware of that too, so they started to re-book everyone to other flights.

The earliest avaible flight back to Detroit was at 5pm. And I was at the airport since 8am. But I had no choice and switched my flight. The rest of the time I just wandered around the terminals, ate a big icecream cone (BTW, I love Edy's butter pecan icecream), waited until the lunch time and had a cheeseburger and beer at Blue Note Cafe.

Having nothing else to do after lunch, I decided to check out my original flight. It seemed that there might be a chance it would take off sometime around what they promised. So I waited there, watching the technicians doing all kinds of stuff around the plane. Luckily enough, they fixed it!

Since I was not on this flight anymore, I had to beg the staff to let me get back. First I talked to a woman and it didn't work out. Then I went back and talked to a guy. He let me in. Why does it always have to be this way?

Anyway, the rest of the story was smooth. Today was such a beautiful day of the fall. Blue sky and crystal clear air. The only thing is that Jia was annoyed by my changing schedule back and forth and she had to suffer the rush hours. Thanks, girl!

My conclusion is that 6 hours of waiting at the airport is not as painful as it sounds, if it's during the daytime. Also, sometimes they do fix mechanical problems of the airplane with a reasonable estimate of time. Third, I love love love the fall.

I am going to enjoy some apple cider I got from the store today, probably with some spice rum, while watching the simpsons. It is good to be back.

Monday, September 18, 2006

a little down

It is raining again. I like the sound of rain dripping onto my window. It is comforting to me.

My mood has been fluctuating quite a bit recently. On the surface I can take control of it, but deep down I know I am slipping.

Work itself wasn't that bad compared to the last trip. It is that in my life there are too many issues I have to face while I chose to ignore them, which is not a good strategy at all. I really need to tackle them one by one, no matter how painful it is to start.

Well, it's all temporary. I will be just fine.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Little Miss Sunshine

This movie has the power to make me laugh out loud at one moment and so sad at the next. It shows the bitter side of life and the sweetness that fills in every crack.

On the surface, the story sounds a little bit too dramatic. It includes a brother who made a suicide attempt, a son who refused to speak, a grandfather who took heorin, and a husband who failed his career and was quite annoying.

However, every character is so real that while watching the movie I felt like I was sitting in their living room or their car, hearing them talking and feeling their pains.

It is probably my favorite one of this year.

Sidenote: I failed two attempts to make steaks. Reasons are still under investigation. As a result, a large amount of beef stew was produced.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

bug bite

The antibiotic medicine I took made me quite dizzy the whole day. Fortunately the swelling in my left leg is becoming much better, though there is still a large area of redness.

I started to suffer from severe bug bites last year. I went to the hospital yesterday because it was getting scary and I felt I was going to be crippled. I guess it was the right decision, though Brian suggested me to do so a year ago.

As a curious patient, I googled the name the doctor gave to my symptoms "infected insect bite cellulitis". Well, it seems like she was right. However, I forgot to ask if there is any way to prevent this from happening again.

This has the potential to be a major reason that I won't go to tropical areas. I am just that delicious, so stay away from the bugs!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

invincible (movie spoiler included)

Since Jia has been back from China, it seems quite logical that we continue to contribute to the income of showcase theatre together. Now we have reached an agreement on what kind of movies we should watch. Basically I am fine with her list after taking out the horror movies. Even the horror movies weren't a problem for me until I saw "Emily Rose". Phew...

I am not a sports fan and I usually don't watch sports on TV except tennis games, but I like movies about sports. So this afternoon instead of going to the Stadium, we watched a movie about football "the Invincible".

It's based on a true story about a thirty-old football fan Vince Papale who finally became a real professional player. At the beginning of the movie, he lost his job as a substitue teacher, his wife divorced him and took everything from him, and all he had was a part-time bartender job. Then there was the big tryout for Philadelphia Eagles. Being talented, he was selected to join the team and made his way out to victories.

What I like most about the movie is not the dream-come-true part, although Jia and I were really excited at the end of the movie when Vince made the touchdown. I was touched by how supportive his friends, his family and his coach had been even at the roughest times.

His friend Tommy, whose own job was at risk anytime, encouraged him to go to the tryout (BTW, Brian, I totally believe you can make it to the American Idol), was happy for his success and never lost faith in him. His dad, his girlfriend, and all other friends were always standing by him and proud of each step he took on the road.

It was a very heart-warming and inspiring movie, which is exactly what I need, always.