Wednesday, July 4, 2012


Being the guy who always does his homework before going to places, the first thing I did when I woke up was turning on my laptop and checking the weather for today. Disappointingly, it was supposedly going to rain today, from morning till the night. As hard as it was for me to believe it, I've witnessed Providence weather first hand, and I was pretty sure that the weather was going to be pretty accurate. I immediately lost my excitement for the plans we had today with the Session II cohorts. Let's just say that rain isn't going to be my best friend any time soon. 

Scenario of a Wompanoag man making a canoe
Ms. Kaplan came at around 10:00 AM to come pick us all up. The sky dropped a few drops of rain as we waited for Ms. Kaplan to come, but stopped as we got to Hotel Providence. We met up with Session II in the lobby and chatted for a while before we left to Plimoth Plantation (and yes, Plimoth is spelled that way). It was an hour long drive from Providence to Massachusetts, but it was totally worth it. We got there at around noon. There weren't a lot of people at Plimoth Plantation at that time, so we took our time exploring. 

The whole site was really interesting. The people there actually dressed as the Wompanoag people (most of them could actually speak their native language) and pilgrims of the original settlement in Plymouth. Most of the Wompanoag didn't, but all the pilgrims were getting in act. They would basically speak like they would've back in 1620. Some took it to the next level, and actually replied back to our questions with the knowledge that the pilgrims would've had back then. For example, one woman asked them if they drank tea, and they replied back with "What is tea? Describe it". It took a while, but they finally "knew" what we were talking about. Some people actually commented on how we dressed and said we looked like "...shipwrecked persons..." It was kind of amusing, but I personally felt like some of them went a little too far with their role playing and made the whole experience less comfortable. In the end though, I had lots of fun experiencing history first-hand, as well as bonding with some of the Session II cohorts. 

"Can you guys find any shade?"

Isn't it amazing? It took us less than five minutes to stop
gazing in awe.
After, we went to the infamous Plymouth Rock. I was so surprised. Let's just say it was the exact opposite of what I expected to be. Before going there, I imagined it to be some large rock or stone that was lifted up, like the one in Lion King (I've been watching too much Disney). Well guess what? It was literally a rock. Just a rock, with the year 1620 carved on it. I understand that it's an important symbol in  American history, but I really didn't see what was really so "spectacular" about it. In addition, the rock is kept in some sort of a Greek temple, with the Greek pillars. I kept wondering, was the temple really necessary? Well apparently, to the people of Plymouth, it is. Though it wasn't what I wanted to see, I still found it to be pretty amusing.

Captain of the ship. 
After lunch, we began touring the Mayflower II. Though it isn't the actual/original Mayflower II, it's fairly accurate to the actual one. They basically gathered information from several sources, each describing the ship in a same manner. With the information, they built a recreation of  the ship. It makes me realize how important this must have been, making them having to do so much research. Similar to the plantation, the captain down in the ship was also role-playing. It was pretty fascinating how into it these people get. It's hard to believe that these guys are actually getting paid for being actors in a colonial time. I think I just found  my dream job... 

We got back to the hotel at around 5:00 PM. Some of the girls didn't want to go to the theaters with us, so they stayed behind. Tayler and Iris went to watch "Ted" and the rest of us went to watch "The Amazing Spiderman". It was a great movie, and a more laid-back thing to do, which felt really good considering how this is our last week. We basically sprinted back to the car and rushed to Indian Point Park to watch the fireworks. Apparently, Indian Point Park was the exact same park that I came with Ying and his floor to play Frisbee and Handball. The fireworks were just spectacular. I actually managed to record the finale of the show. I'd never been so close to any of them before, and this is only the second time where I've actually watched fireworks from outside of my T.V. It was a great evening. In all honestly, I actually kind of forgot it was Fourth of July until the fireworks started showing up. For some reason, Providence and Massachusetts don't really go all out in showing their patriotism unlike back in Pinole where U.S. flags are practically on every corner. 

The rain never actually came back for us, not that I'm complaining. I had a great day today with our party of three guys and ten girls. Despite the busy scheduling, we got a lot of stuff done. Tomorrow, our Macroeconomics class will be taking our "final" (a.k.a. our mock AP Macroeconomics test.) In addition, Brown Session II will be having their three hour trip to Dartmouth College. I wish the best for both of our groups that we'll dominate the following days in Providence. With my final days in Providence drawing closer and closer, I can only hope that it's smooth sailing from here on out. 

Everyone can be serious in their pictures, but not everyone can be silly like us. (Taken on the Mayflower II replica)

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