Showing posts from September, 2013


Today was an extraordinary day for me! I had the pleasure of flying to the CN tower by plane today, and it was like nothing I'd ever seen before! Sure, I've flown to other countries by plane before, but I'd never actually FLOWN one. Also, the purpose of the trip was to sight see, and I never realized that Canada was so beautiful!

Our plane was a 4 seater; I'm not exactly sure what the model and type is. But I got to wear earphones and talk over the radio. There are a lot of checks and procedures that must be followed before a flight, and the weather is really important to fly a plane. We had to stay under the clouds so we waited until the skies cleared up. But the wait was definitely worth it!

It was really fascinating to see how the pilot and dispatchers communicated with each other over the course of the flight! Since Toronto is so popular and has a busy airport, we often had to change altitude to accommodate the other aircrafts. For the most part, we stayed between …

Organic Chemistry...

My own experiences struggling to understand organic chemistry can be compared to the Duke of Wellington was struggling to defeat Napoleon (notice how both theses events happened in Waterloo). Since I am in the biotechnology chartered accountancy program here at Waterloo, I am required to take the dreaded CHE 266, organic chemistry.

Now, according to most news items and student feedback, organic chemistry is consistently ranked as the Top 10 Hardest Courses in University, and usually #1. That does not help my confidence level, nor does it help that on the first day my professor told us less than 20% of students pass the course with an 80% and 15% of students fail.

First class was overwhelming, I had enormous chemical names thrown in my face left and right. The professor practically danced over all of the points, saying "just review this on your own". Yeah right.

But now that second class has passed, I've studied a lot, and the prof talks more slowly, I'm not so terrif…

Biotechnology Chartered Accounting???

Hello friends!

Many people have been asking me to write about my university program, biotechnology chartered accountancy. Now, the normal reaction when I tell others what I'm studying is "huh?". I know it seems strange to combine science with accounting, but this field of science and business has been becoming more and more popular and sought after.

The reason I chose to go into the field of study is because I wanted to leave my options open. I really wanted to do my chartered accounting designation but was also considering medical school when going into university, so this seemed like a good option.

Currently there are only 11 students in my year and getting into the program was not easy. The requirements for my program was "individual selection from the mid nineties" in terms of average, which is the highest requirement to get into Waterloo University. I'm very passionate about both science and accounting, and I love all my courses. However, my program is…

The Alaska Experience

As the famous John Muir once said, "To the lover of wilderness, Alaska is one of the most wonderful countries in the word." And he is absolutely correct. My experiences in Alaska is almost too great for words, and now I understand why people who have trekked the pristine lands before me have never forgotten the experience.

My trip was first by cruise then by land tour. On our sea days, we visited many ports of call in Alaska. The first was Keitchikan, and we saw lots of wildlife there including eagles, black bears, salmon, and seals. We also visited the largest collection of authentic totem poles in the world!

Next we hit Juneau, the capital of Keitchikan. My favourite part of the region was the Mendenhall Glaciers and Nugget Falls. Of course, I also enjoyed watching the spawning sockeye salmon swimming in the glacial waters. It's amazing how fast the glaciers are retreating, since the falls were covered by the glaciers only 15 years ago!

Skagway was the third and final …

Exploring Vancouver

Vancouver is one of those places that I've heard about so many times but never visited... until now. The city has always held so much fascination for me, and just over 3 weeks ago I had the pleasure of visiting the beautiful seaside city.

I have to say that Stanley park is one of my favourite attractions in the city. With a beautiful oceanside view of the city skyline, the park is full of people jogging, walking, or biking. I really get a feel of what Vancouver is like just by walking along the gorgeous seawall. Of course, at low tides, you can meet some interesting creatures :)

Another very fun place to explore is the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park. Offering a magnificent view of the leafy rain forests, the park has many interesting trails, bridges, cliff walks and even tree top trails to walk through! 

Capilano Park was quite educational too! I learned so much about birds of prey and the types of plant life present by listening to speakers and reading the interesting tidbits on…

Bedazzled by the Butchart Gardens

About 3 weeks ago, I travelled to Vancouver and Victoria before heading up north to Alaska. On my trip, I encountered many interesting people and visited some stunning places. One of my favourite places in BC was the Butchart Gardens in Victoria.

Now I've seen some pretty beautiful gardens in my life: Versailles, the botanical gardens in Niagara Falls, and very pretty neighbourhood ones, but man, this place was definitely the most unforgettable.

The whole estate is a feast for the senses. Annuals and perennials alike burst with colour and life, competing for attention. There are also many different styles of gardens too, including Japanese, Rose, Italian, etc.

What's also really great about the park are the Umbrellas! It was raining lightly when we arrived and we could look great and stay dry!

Looking at the beautiful plant life in the place, I'm astounded by the work that clever gardeners and landscapers have done, it's definitely not easy to keep such a large propert…



Long time no write! So I am finally back on home soil, and I know it's been a while since I've last written but there was no internet at sea. My trip to Alaska was FANTASTIC, and I'll be writing some future blogs about my adventures there! But I have to say, I am glad to be back. My summer has flown by so quickly. Now I'm into my second year of Biotechnology Chartered Accountancy.

I thought I'd be able to have some down time to relax before school, but unfortunately, all of the orientation events here have kept me busy! I haven't had a single free day since moving in 3 days ago. But being a science orientation leader here at Waterloo has been so much fun and very rewarding. It's always great to see the bright young faces of the new students, and I really enjoy helping them settle into the school. Of course, problems always pop up. Lunch was hectic; I had to multitask and help communicate the problems with serving the food the organizers. Thank goodness…