2015 wrap-up

Hey guys;

So, it’s that time of the year, once again, when we wrap up all the things that occurred throughout the year.

Throughout the world, perhaps what dominates the world are a series of terrorist acts, from the Charley Hebdo shootings in January to the horrifying attacks in Paris in mid November. Both major incidents, as well as other smaller attacks, were universally condemned as an act of terror. Other events include the first ever Europe-wide sport competition, the first European Games in Azerbaijan in September. And other than that, of course there are many other events occurring around the world.

Now, down to my life…2015 deserves the title as the year of change, because…it’s the year where I move from high school life to university life. And…as usual, I will list both best and worst events of the year, starting with the best events…

Best event of 2015: The so called ‘Mega October’, from October 4th to October 30th.

This large event actually comprises 3 smaller events, the Ecosystems and Natural Resources field trip to Petchaburi, the Nature Lovers Club residential trip to Pattaya, and the STA Halloween Carnival.

Let’s start with the field trip…it was the first field trip at university, and I enjoyed it. Just like the days of IB ESS fieldworks, this field trip involved practical investigations, though the equipment used were not as high-tech as during the ESS days.

Next up is the big one…the residential trip to Pattaya. At first I thought that I won’t have a residential as my best event of the year, but that’s not true. The Nature Lovers Club residential trip to Pattaya was a true residential trip of its kind, and the one that I can genuinely compare with the STA residential trips of the previous years. Though the trip was just a single night, it’s better than not having any residential trips at all!

Already, once the trip started I knew that the trip’s going to be amazing. The first highlight was a visit to a breeding center where I learned a lot about different kinds of animals. Then comes a visit to a resort specializes in growing plants in a sustainable way, some techniques I discovered was quite remarkable. The resort I ended up staying was not too bad, at all, and it’s next to the beach.

Day 2 of the trip is the fun day…me and everyone on the tirp went to do some beach cleaning on an island. I got to enjoy the ocean, it’s very beautiful! The afternoon is where the real fun was; everyone was given time to jump and play around in the ocean, and I enjoyed it a lot! Jumping off the second deck was scary but it’s fun! It just proves that I’m a risk taker, one of the IB learner profile!

Lastly, comes the STA Halloween Carnival. To be honest here, the timing was not so good as I have a Math midterm exam right the next day. But at the end I decided that…3-4 hours lost is not a big deal, and certainly it is not a big deal, as I ended up passing the course anyway, though it’s rather like a high-risk gamble as the poor scores of the midterm forced me to commit a lot of energy into the second quiz and the final. Anyways enough of that…

The carnival itself was nothing special compared to previous years, but it’s still fun nonetheless. Dance was perhaps the best part of it; I really enjoyed it, even though I knew that a midterm is less than 24 hours away…

Second best event of 2015: Post-exams events, from May 21st to July 3rd.

Another big event…I decided to include May 21st as well because of a school performance that is so fun that I feel I have to include it, even though there’s 2 IB exams left on May 22nd…

The high school production ‘Flas’ kicks off this series of event. Though I have 2 IB exams on May 22nd, I figured out…2 hours of revision lost isn’t going to be a big deal, and it isn’t really a big deal after all, as I managed to get a 6 in Business and a 5 in ESS anyway. The show was fun, funny and cool at the same time. Some really crazy ideas were introduced, for instance the concept of a meteorite crashing down in a short time, though I think this isn’t even crazy, as it’s a scientific fact, but I think the approach to this was wat makes the logic seem cool in itself. The show lasted for 2 hours, and I think it is really worth the time. The use of visual and sound effects together with music bands really add to the atmosphere of the show and it’s a great fun.

Next up, is the KIS graduation ceremony for the class of 2015. The ceremony was itself short, but I got to meet some of my old friends from primary school, and a visit to the school certainly brings back memories of my days at KIS.

And…next on the list, is the STA class of 2015 graduation ceremony. It is wonderful, and being organized in a hotel, complete with good food certainly makes the event amazing. The moment when I was called on stage to get the diploma, I feel that I’ve succeeded in putting my name in the history of the school as the first visually-impaired student to have successfully graduated from the school. But there’s a sadder side to it as well; it was the very last time that I saw everyone from my year together as a big class, together at a single location on the plannet, and I knew that, from then on everyone from my year will be scattered across thousands of miles across the globe as they move on to their uni lives.

Next up, is the senior prom. It’s as good as the one my year organizes, and it is certainly fun with all the music and dances. Though unfortunately, something terrible happened to my computer later that month that almost destroyed my wonderful memory of the event. But disregarding that, the prom itself was fun. Though I later learned that I won a prise, I think it dont really matter as the prise was not worth much a value.

Next, is the STA XPOXV. It’s amazing, and the best one I saw yet, though sadly enough just like senior prom some parts of my memory had been destroyed by a terrible hard drive crash a week later, but luckily the photos were still there.

Lastly, is the last day of the academic year. Though the day was not that significant, but it is the day that I got my very last yearbook from STA, and so is my final chance to collect signatures from people at STA. I also took this time to take some photos and videos of some places, E.G my tutor base.

Third best event of 2015: Ecosystems and Natural Resources field trip to Khao Yai on November 1st.

Alright, enough of large events that contains many smaller events. The Khao Yai trip itself was good, but definitely tiring as it mainly consists of walking through thick forests with very short stops. The focus of the trip is not on practical investigations, but rather more like a field lecture about the forest biome and such. What really annoyed me at the very end of the trip is the fact that I got stuck in a traffic jam, just because of a small construction machine!

Fourth best event of 2015: Songkran celebration at school on April 3rd.

This year’s Songkran celebration at school was as good as previous years, and once again the highlight was in the afternoon where I got to splash water at everyone. It was also my last Songkran celebration at STA, which is a bit of a sad fact.

Fifth best event of 2015: STA Spring Dance on March 13th.

This year’s Spring Dance was as good as the last year, though I have to admit there weren’t many people, but all those dances still make the event fun and enjoyable.

Now, time for the worst events of 2015…

Worst event of 2015: Annoyances by the trolls, up until April 3rd.

Let’s face it, the trolls even bothered to annoy me, until the very last day before the Songkran holiday. Though they may not be as active as previous years, they certainly know how to launch big attacks on times that I’m not being aware of. Perhaps the most notorious trolls incident is on February 6th, of which the trolls used a combination of threats to force me to cave into their demands, and as a result of this, and the subsequent eruption of ask.fm trolls, and a combined pressure from all sides, I decided to shutdown my ask.fm account for good. But afterwards the trolls appeared to calm down somewhat, seeing that they’ve lost a strategic channel of which to annoy me.

Anyways, I hope that 2016 will be just as good as 2015…

Term 1 has ended.

Hey guys;

So, after 12 hard weeks and this short week of exams, the first term at university has finally drawn to a close. Now it’s time for the long-awaited Christmas holiday, and for me this will actually be a proper holiday. All those annoying homework, revisions (particularly the boring Othello and Streetcar plays along with endless note taking and memorizing key quotations, points and literary devices), IAs, TOK essays and EE, as well as huge packs of past papers are now the thing of the past!

Though this first term at MUIC certainly is about a month or so shorter than the first term at STA, the absence of a half-term holiday makes this term feels long, and the presence of midterm exams only serve to make this term feels tiring.

Overall, throughout this term I went to 1 residential trip (excluding the welcoming camp), and 2 day field trips. The Nature Lovers Club residential trip to Pattaya was probably the best event of 2015, and when combined with the Petchaburi trip earlier on October 4th and STA Halloween Carnival, the result is a series of amazing events that will become the single best event of the year, even surpassing the welcoming activities in September. November was a month that is less exciting, with only 2 major events, the Khao Yai field trip and Loy Krathong at Mahidol.

The Khao Yai trip itself was good fun, but as tiring as ever. Virtually the whole day was spent walking in thick jungles with rough terrains. But the weather was not too bad though, but nonetheless still very hot.

Loy Krathong was pretty good, and was the first big Loy Krathong celebration I saw since the 2012 event at STA, or indeed the very last, true big Loy Krathong celebration at STA was back in 2010. The celebration at Mahidol this year was at the learning center, which was easy enough to get to from my dorm. The food at the event was not too bad.

Overall, term 1 at MUIC was good fun, and I found myself adapting to uni life quite easily and fast.

Anyways, that’s it for now…