Just like that, it’s time to say goodbye to San Diego

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I’ve now left San Diego. Isn’t it quite remarkable how quickly a year flies by? It seems like it was only yesterday that I was unpacking my bags in my new room, and slowly finding my way around campus.

It didn’t help that the final week went by very quickly. I had the final for Numerical Methods (MAE107) at 8am on the Monday morning. We were allowed to take in two pages (both sides) of notes into the exam, and they proved to be very useful. It was a more difficult exam that I had expected though, I needed to use the whole 3 hours. Given all that time however, as always it wasn’t a mad panic of an exam, and I felt happy as I left at 11am. I felt even more happy overhearing other people talking, as it seemed I had done it correctly. That afternoon I did a few errands, such as changing my address at the bank. I also relaxed for a bit.

On Tuesday I got up at 4:30am to watch the sun rise. I’d been meaning to do it for a long, long time, and I wasn’t disappointed. I was glad I did it then too in hindsight, as every morning since had been very grey and cloudy. We had our competition for MAE3 at 11:30, and this didn’t go well. Our robot lost in the first round, although we were up again ‘3-balls 1-bridge’ which went on to win the overall competition, so we had nothing to feel ashamed about. As soon as we were out, I shot off to downtown San Diego to go to Kansas City BBQ, a “Sleazy bar location from the film Top Gun”. I had a lovely BBQ meal and a pleasant afternoon in the sun.

I did a little work on Wednesday morning, and then I went to the beach with a couple of people from dancing after lunch. It was gorgeous down the beach, so warm and relaxing! I got a little burnt, sadly. But I swam in the ocean for about 45 minutes, so it was all good. I laughed a bit, because Jenny had a National Trust of Scotland umbrella she’d brought to shelter herself from the sun. I don’t know if it was intentional because I’m from Scotland, but it was funny all the same! I said goodbye to another friend when I got back, before going out for some terrific sushi in the evening. There is a wonderful Sushi bar in downtown San Diego, the quality can be measured by the length of the queue out the door. We had to wait an hour to get in! I had 17 pieces of sushi for $10 though, superb!

I worked most of Thursday, and was very grateful to a friend of mine lending me his graphic calculator for the MAE133 (Finite Elements) final. The exam itself was at 7pm, and didn’t finish till 10pm. With the aid of this calculator I was able to complete it without too many problems, and could take my time over the more difficult stuff.

Coming out at 10pm, it was a relief to be finished, but these feelings were mixed with sadness. The year at UCSD had come to an end. That was it. I’m looking forward to going home, but come September I’m really going to be missing it here. I’ll get used to it of course, but currently it still hasn’t really sunk in that I’m not going back to UCSD. Even after packing up all my stuff.

We went to the beach again on Friday, and I shot straight into the ocean, but it was cloudy and generally cold on Friday. The weekend was spend packing and dancing, and I’m now back staying in the same hotel I did when I first arrived in LA last September. I’ve come full circle. Last night I saw Florence and the Machine…that is what the holidays are all about. I love LA!

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