Tag Archives: fun

Gamelan Ensemble – Part 2

If you didn’t walk by the Music Building last Wednesday, you missed out on a real treat. The Balinese Gamelan Ensemble (of which I am a member) gave its end-of-year concert outside by the tuning fork sculpture. We all got dressed up in our Balinese costumes (sorry, I have no picture!) and sent all the music we learned over the year into the sky.

I had so much fun playing in that last concert, and being a part of the ensemble throughout the year was a fulfilling experience. I am so grateful that I get to go to a university where I can experience and learn about another culture first hand from some of the best in the world. I have a new appreciation for world music and honestly I really want to go to Bali and hear a legitimate Balinese gamelan ensemble! I feel like it would be mind-blowingly amazing.

Experiencing Balinese music has given me a new perspective on my own music making. In Gamelan Ensemble, the main thing is to have a good time and share your energy with your fellow music-makers and audience members. Sometimes I feel like that can be lost a bit in Western music; we get a bit too caught up in trying to achieve perfection in every aspect of our playing that it all gets a bit too serious for my liking. I’m going to try to incorporate more of that fun-loving attitude into my own playing, and get back to why I decided on music in the first place.

That’s not to say that I’m not going to do my best in terms of technique, but I think that for my music to be the best it can be, and also for it to be the most fulfilling for me, it has to come from a place of just loving making the music.

Leave a Comment

Filed under School of Music

Wreck Beach

With school starting tomorrow and the sun shining in this rainy city, what else was I do to do but go to the beach? Yes, it’s true that Wreck Beach is clothing-optional, but I like to keep mine on and if you keep your eyes mostly on the ground you shouldn’t see too much of anything you don’t want to see.

The mountains, as always, were beautiful. The scene was serene, but full of life; after all, it is a holiday.  Wreck is actually a place I like to come in the winter, when I can just be more or less alone and stare out at the sea and the mountains, contemplate life and find inspiration. But a busy day is is pretty inspirational too.

Among the freshman, booze-vendors, nude tanners, and pot-smokers were also vendors set up towards the trees, selling skirts and scarves, jewelry and bags. I actually spotted a woven bag I liked but didn’t have any money, so I’m seriously considering going back next weekend…

Natasha and Christie and I had a picnic on the beach, punctuated by Christie shaking up her salad, when the lid of her Tupperware popped off and her food flew everywhere, and in her surprise, she kicked up a bunch of sand that went flying into Tash’s peanut butter. My sandwich was safe.  Needless to say, there was laughter. (One of my favourite things!)

Now, we had come to go swimming. I had never actually swam in an ocean before, given that I’m from pretty much the exact centre of the continent, so lakes have been my swimming location for most of my life.  The water was cold – of course, it was only 20 or 21 degrees – but somehow it was easier to keep walking and splashing in as the water crept closer to my head, whereas in the lakes of home I usually have to be pushed in before I’ll let the water get past boob-level.

The waves were huge! I’d gotten waves that large when I’d been sailing on Lake Huron, but never when I’ve been swimming. They kind of scared me, but it was actually pretty exhilarating to time my jump as the wave came, and be suspended a few feet above the sand as the wave pushed me back a meter or two. The salt came as a shock when the water splashed my face and got in my mouth, although Christie (who is from Oregon) said the water wasn’t actually that salty here.

And of course, any mention of Wreck Beach would not be complete without complaining about the stairs. I’ve never counted them myself, but there must be at least four hundred, if not more. It is tiring work, climbing back up, let me tell you. But then again, I guess it’s good exercise.

With Imagine Day tomorrow, it’s a good reminder: try something new, have some fun, dream big dreams. Here at UBC, the world is yours for the taking.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Campus Life, Suite Life

Pacific National Exhibition

Since school starts in only 2 days, my friends and I figured, why not have some fun before summer ends? Following that the natural course of action was to head to The Fair at the Pacific National Exhibition. About an hour and a half and a very stressful jam-packed bus ride later, we arrived at the fair and were swept away in the massive crowds of people.

Stop number one? Corn dogs. I don’t think I’ve ever eaten one before today. It’s not exactly the world’s finest delicacy, but not bad either and definitely a life experience I can check off my bucket list. Okay, it wasn’t actually on my list but it’s still a life experience.  We walked around the park and considered buying ride tickets, but then decided we’d rather save our money for something like groceries, or internet bills.

We went to the Super Dogs show, which was actually really impressive and made my day with their corny cartoon-for-ten-year-olds style theme song. Seriously though, those dogs can jump really high! We also went to the barn, and what with the dog show plus the baby chickens/ducks/bunnies/goats/cows/horses there was very nearly a cuteness overload.

The fair also had a Star Trek exhibit, and although I’m not a Trekkie, my friend Kim is a huuuge one. We watched part of the newest movie while waiting in line to get in, and the costumes and props they had on display were really neat. There were also some photo ops in some reconstructed sets; I wish we had bought one so I could show you, but again, groceries need buying. In one, Christie was wearing a green shirt in front of a green screen, so she was invisible, in another, I had the most intense face on the bridge of the USS Enterprise, and then we were all rather awkwardly confused in the teleported room.

However, the day would not be complete without more carnival food. I opted to wait for supper until I got home, but I did buy an order of deep fried Oreos – they were totally worth the five bucks and the thousand calories. Kim got a deep fried pop tart, but both paled in comparison to Christie and Natasha’s pick: deep fried wagon wheels. Imagine an ooey gooey s’more melted inside a warm fluffy donut. Heaven in your mouth, I’m tellin’ ya.

Today was a good day of fun, of not worrying about school coming up, of not stressing over my hurting shoulder muscles. A day of exploring this fabulous city of Vancouver, because what a waste it would be to live here for four years and not see any of it.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Suite Life

Balancing Academic and Social (And Health)

Have you ever heard of the university triangle? Basically, it goes like this: grades, social life, sleep — pick two.  And for many people, that’s the case. There’s only so much time in a day, so if you want to study and hang out with friends, often there isn’t enough time for sleeping. Or maybe you can’t function without sleep or hanging out, so then your grades take a hit. Or perhaps you’re so focused on getting good grades and keeping your health up that you never have time for fun stuff.

In my personal opinion, none of those options equal a fulfilling university experience.  Somehow I managed to find some balance between the three points of the triangle.  My secret? Time management, my friend. Time management. It makes everything possible. And there is one little friend I have that makes my life sooooo much easier and helps me manage my time: my agenda.

If I was to recommend getting one thing for university, it would be an agenda, or some kind of calender, even if that’s on your phone.  My agenda contained everything I wanted to do, like on this picture here, I’ve got homework assignments written in, research, readings, lessons, rehearsals, performances, involvement events, dorm spring formal, dinner with my boyfriend’s parents, my mom coming into town.

That’s the main thing: you need to write down everything you’re going to do, on the day you’re going to do it. I would prioritize what needed to happen on a given day, figure out how long I would need to do it, and then schedule it out in my mind.  That way you can make the most of your time that isn’t spent in class.  Write down deadlines so you can see them coming, and start working on projects long before they’re due (I usually take two weeks to write an essay).  If you can do little bits at a time, you’ll be less stressed before the due date and you’ll have more time for other things.

So, balancing out time for a social life? No problem.  Schedule that in too.  Keep in mind you might not be going out every single night, but if you can even hang out with friends once or twice a week, that counts as a social life to me.  It’s easy in a dorm; you can spend time with your pals just by going to supper together, and you needed to go to supper anyway, so bam, two birds with one stone.  Studying in groups can also be a good way to get some friend-time, while still getting some work done. Personally, I don’t work well when I’m surrounded by people, but it can work for some people.

And your health?  There are all sorts of ways you can keep healthy in your hectic schedule. Eat good food.  Make yourself go to bed at a time where you can get at least 8 hours of sleep. Staying up all night cramming is not good for you.  Get some exercise: sign up for a class at the recreation centre. That way it’s just an hour each week that’s already set aside for you, and since you’ve already paid for it you’ll be motivated to go.  And that schedule in your agenda? Schedule in time for yourself! It’s important so that you can have time to unwind and not go insane. Maybe it means reading a book, taking a walk, or just derping around on the internet. Just a word of caution though, make sure your “you time” doesn’t go on forever and you don’t forget to do everything else on your list! If that’s a problem for you, set a timer or an alarm so that when your fun time is up, you actually get back to business.

So that’s my personal recipe for balance, but there’s certainly more to say on the subject.  You can attend workshops at CLASS in October or the SLC in January.

Any questions? Shoot a comment my way.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Academics, Wellness

Day of the Longboat

A bustling crowd of people, loud music, excitement you can feel in the air, the ocean, and mountains and high rises on the horizon: this is Day of the Longboat.  It is a must-attend event at UBC, and for good reason.  It’s the most fun I’ve had in a while, and it really brought me and my team-and-floor-mates closer together.  It also brings up my number one way to meet and make friends: get involved.  Continue reading


Filed under Campus Life, Residence