There are bad things in life that happen. Things that we can’t control. Things that get out of hand. Most of the time, these situations are unexpected. And, they suck. They really do.
Two days ago (January 26), a terrible incident occurred in the hills above Calabasas. A helicopter crashed, taking nine lives. Kobe Bryant, Gianna Bryant, John Altobelli, Keri Altobellie, Alyssa Altobelli, Christina Mauser, Sarah Chester, Payton Chester, and Ara Zobayan. Three of the passengers were just 13 years old. All of them had families. Families who are going through unbearable pain from the news. No one saw this coming when the helicopter took off. No one thought that the last time they saw them, that that would be the last time.
There are so many people who look up to Kobe Bryant. Whether it was the way he played or some words that gave which motivated or changed their life. Maybe they were a big-time fan or just someone who heard about something Kobe said; nevertheless, he was an inspiration to so many. He was a light. He was kind. He had work ethic. He was focused. He had humility. He was a strong competitor and had such an incredible creative force that pushed people to the best they can be just through his words. He is one of the most respected players in NBA history. He was so much more than just an athlete, he was also a family man. He was so caring and kind to his family and to those he loved. And, he was still so young. It’s hard to believe that this even happened. It doesn’t feel real. He is a true legend. And, he will forever be remembered.
One thing to remember is that life is short. I know that it’s hard to wrap your mind around this fact. It really is hard. I know that it’s painful knowing that death can just come at any moment. We don’t know when our last day will be. We don’t know what’s going to happen in the future. But we have now. Right now. We have this time and moment to push ourselves to live the life we want to live. The truth is if you’re not seeking life and purpose, you’re not living, you’re just alive. There’s a difference, a big difference, from being alive and living. Being alive is stagnant. It’s being dragged daily as monotony continuously crosses your mind. It’s standing still as the current of life pulls you to do the same boring thing every single day.
“Intimidation [doesn’t] exist if you’re in the right frame of mind.” – Kobe
But this thing called living, it’s something else. It’s something completely different. Living is never missing a single moment. Living is screaming out at the beach. Living is singing your heart out. It’s about dancing because that’s how you express yourself. It’s about taking that chance, shooting your shot, going after those opportunities and passions that you have. Do what you do, love who you love, tell that person that you love how you feel. Life is about falling down, failing, but getting back up again, stronger, better, and with a bigger fire inside of you to keep fighting for what you want. It’s about being wild and untamed. It’s about laughing until your stomach hurts and you have pee and cry at the same time. It’s about always going and never being complacent. It’s about those midnight adventures for ice cream. It’s about noticing the little things, appreciating the simple joys, and enjoying every damn bite from that cupcake.
“I can’t relate to lazy people. We don’t speak the same language. I don’t understand you. I don’t want to understand you.” – Kobe
May all the lives lost be honored. My heart goes out to everyone affected by this tragedy.
Live life authentically, kindly, and fully. Love your family and your team.
The majority of schools follow the same requirements of taking math, english, and all those other subjects. It has been this way for years. The same cycle for every student. But, why? We ask kids what they want to be when they grow up and fuel them with excitement as we put on a facade of “you can be what you want to be”. Why did I say we put a facade? It’s because as they get older our expectations we share them truly reveal themselves and we try to mold their minds to a 9-5 job. We shake their realities of life making them believe that those dreams they once had isn’t the priority and might not even come true.
I’ve asked countless people: “why are you going to college”
And, the answers are usually the same: “to get a good job”
But, why are we programming our generation that after kindergarten to preschool to middle school to high school to college their priority is finding a 9-5 job till retirement. That’s no life to live. And, I’m not trying to say don’t go to school, because I truly believe that somewhere that the intention is to teach. And, those who give their time to teach others are true heroes. What I’m saying is that their implementation for their intention is faulty. What’s the use of trying to force students to take subjects they don’t want to day after day. This just leads to cheating in class and the destruction of motivation.
Every child and every person is different. They learn differently. They take in information differently. Some people have shorter attention spans. Some people learn better when they do hands on activities. Some people learn better by watching. With all our data researchers and statistics we should know that putting everyone in the same process and expecting them to learn and grow the same way is just a big no-no. Wouldn’t it be crazy though if we did that? If we hundreds of different people into a box and teach them all the same way and expect good soaring results? Oh, wait, that is what we do.
It’s kind of like getting a bunch of cactuses and a bunch of daisies, watering them with the same amount of water then expecting both of them to grow equally healthy and to it’s full potential.
Students should be given classes that is directed towards what they want to be in life. ￼Yes, there should be some mandatory classes. But they should ones that would really benefit the student when they go out there in the real world. To name a few classes that students should have to take: Financial, leadership, cooking classes, first aid.
Life skills are what need to be taught. They expect graduated students to suddenly be on their own and know how to do their bills and budgeting when all they taught at school was you had to run at least a mile to have a good grade in PE and that the square root of 64 is 8.
To sum everything I’m saying, learning life skills is way more important than trying to memorize the values of the unit circle. Everything around us is evolving, changing, and improving. It’s time that the educational system do that as well and make school a place of growth, ambitious.
Quote of AWESOMENESS: “Life in orbit is spectacular.” – Tim Peake
Morning burst like a bubble as the alarm shouted: “WAKE UP, IT’S 6 AM!“. The sun was showing off as the clouds slowly dispersed until it was nothing but fine grains of salt scattered across the sky. An announcement popped on the news telegram showing the weather and a little notification about all the events and stores that were broadcasting they’re open hours. You decide to go for a little hover as you look up into the thoughtfully designed elevators shooting to the stars. It was a piece of artwork. Luckily, you had put in your schedule to go for a zoom into space today with a couple of friends. You and your friends meet up at one of the elevator points and get in with your special suits (which, by the way, look absolutely amazing) and designed gear. The countdown starts, “Please make sure you’re properly suited up and secured to the wall…. 5…. 4… 3.. 2..”
Before you could say “snickerdoodle”, the elevator starts its ascend into the sky and the ground below you starts to shrink. Your favorite song plays over the speaker as you and your friends start discussing which restaurant on which planet you wanted to try this time……
Okay, maybe the planet-hopping might take a little more brainstorming and planning and researching, but wouldn’t this be such an adventure.
Today we shall be discussing (yes, I know, that was a very formal-serious-big word I just used) the 𝓢𝓹𝓪𝓬𝓮 𝓮𝓵𝓮𝓿𝓪𝓽𝓸𝓻. Okay, so, let us proceed…..
Ideas of the space elevator have already been put out there for quite some time. “What is it?”, you may be asking yourself. Well, basically, it’s an elevator which starts here (on our beautiful planet) and goes on and on and on until space. I know, that would be pretty long. I mean, I already have trouble just thinking about using an elevator with a hundred floors. All fears aside, I would have to admit, an elevator TO SPACE is pretty awesome.
Transportation of goods would be relatively cheaper because aerospace companies wouldn’t have to keep remanufacturing space rockets and other things. We would be moving forward towards ideas on planet-hopping and studying more about the space world and cheering on, as Buzz Lightyear so famously quoted, ” to infinity and beyond!”.
However, there are some elements that would have to be considered and have safety protocols in return. Some are the following:
Conflicts with countries and people who would use this for something other than good
The strength of the material used for building
Passing meteors or space junk that might
To wrap everything up, researchers and scientists are still ongoing with how we are to design this access to space. Ideas keep on coming. It might seem like such a huge project and idea, but researchers are still definitely working to have this in our future.
Quote of AWESOMENESS: “I rebel; therefore I exist.” – Albert Camus
…with a cause
In most cases, the word rebellion or rebel is associated with nothing good. Parents and friends warn to steer clear from anything at all rebellious. It has come to a point where when one mentions the word “rebel,” the other keeps their eyes down and avoids at all costs. However, since you clicked this blog, I will assume that you want to know what rebellion is and that maybe you want to understand better and be a rebel. Let’s continue.
ℝ𝕖𝕓𝕖𝕝 = 𝔹𝔸𝔻𝔹𝔸𝔻𝔹𝔸𝔸𝔻(at least according to most)
However, I believe that this needs a perspective change. We need to look at it in a right angle and see “rebellion” as the exact opposite of what most people agree it to be.
Let’s take a step back for a moment and analyze this.
The definition of a rebel is:
Someone who goes against authority
Someone who stands up or defies authority
Usually, a rebellious person is known as one who challenges authority, breaks the rules, behaves in unacceptable ways, and refuse to do what they are told they have to do. But, the thing is, at times, situations handed to us by so-called “higher authority”, by society, and those that want to make the majority of people feel inferior to them, need to be stood up to.
Let’s look at a few peeps in our history who were classified as rebels (but aka, in my opinion, pretty cool humans):
This dude was a slave of the Roman Empire as well as a Thracian gladiator. In the Third Servile War, he led the slave revolt which was able to do many defeats toward the Roman army before he was struck down once and for all.
✰ Frederick Douglass
Frederick was born in slavery in 1818 but escaped when he was a young man. He spent his life going against the injustices and fighting for equality for Women’s Rights and other slaves.
✰ Flying University
Okay, this might not be a person, BUT, it is an excellent example of an idea implemented that rebelled the system. During the time when women and some men weren’t given equal opportunity to study, there was a university that was known as the Flying University. The reason why it got this name was that the meetings of the students of this university had to keep switching from location to location to avoid the authority and being caught. Quite rebellious, huh.
✰ Rosa Parks
Rosa Louise McCauley Parks was a woman of great dignity and courage. She was a civil rights leader. She refused to give up her seat to somebody who thought that he was more valuable and deserving as a human being to have these privileges caused by society. She was tired of following these guidelines that were given to her and rebelled against what she was taught to do (which was give way and keep your head down). She kept her head up, despite the danger that lurked, stared danger in the eye, rebelled, and this bravery led to a nationwide effort to end racial segregation of public facilities. An absolute warrior.
These are only a few examples of those who rebelled. Those who, despite the challenges they acknowledged they would face, still stood up and went against what others were handing to them on a silver plate to just conform to.
вeιɴɢ α reвel & ғιɴdιɴɢ yoυr cαυѕe:
Here comes the good stuff. The interesting bit. Your guide to being a rebel and finding your cause.
Remember to always keep in mind that rebelling doesn’t mean being a jerk or trying hard to be cool. And, rebelling is your attitude and not how you dress. That this kind of lifestyle will have its consequences like everything else in life and navigating through it, you have to be smart and think through and stay strong.
Some tips and steps to your journey:
Question Popular Belief and Hold Unpopular Views on Social Issues
Some examples for this would be how, before, segregation was a popular belief. Today it is considered wrong because it is. Those people who went against that belief and fought against segregation are now known as thinkers and upholders of freedom. One other popular social norm in today’s world would be partying and doing drugs to be cool and living life but going against that and expressing it to others is your rebellion.
The reason why most people don’t question the beliefs they have or what others have is that it’s easier to just accept things at face value. Although questioning things does help you stand out, naturally, it also helps you to find the truth. Yes, it will be tough, especially when you usually just accept what’s given, but you’re tougher.
Imagine we just accepted that the earth was flat or that Earth was the center of the universe? crazy.
Speak Your Mind and Do You
I don’t just mean to blabber out whatever pops in your head about someone or something. When I say Speak Your Mind, I mean to be an advocate for your personal opinions and beliefs. To speak about those issues that you actually believe in. Those things that you want to resolve.
Does your food in your school cafeteria suck? Talk to the school administration. Work something out. Show some facts and clear evidence on why it would be better to give our better food.
Do you see people excessively use plastic? Try working out something with the school to make an awareness week or talk about it during an assembly. Inspire people and talk to them about the difference they can make. Creatively show what the world could be with everyone helping through art. Do something, say something.
Now, what do I mean when I say Do You? I mean to not be pressured to do what others are doing just because they consistently ask you to. Do what’s in your heart and not what others expect of you, that’s one of the foundations of being a rebel. Want to suddenly do dancing? Join a dance class or just start dancing when music plays at lunchtime. Want to argue with others on their beliefs? Join a debate club. Want to help those animals and nature have a voice? Speak up, join a club, -heck even make your own club! Do you.
Ignore the Negative Opinions but Stand Up for Your beliefs
Let’s face it. There will always be people out there who will find a way to talk you down just because that’s how they act. But, don’t let this get to you. You’re not trying to stay in the clear zone and please people, you’re focusing on doing you. These people mock because they aren’t comfortable with different or strange. But don’t take what they say about you to heart.
Although you may listen when teachers or others tell you to behave a certain way because it is the rules, you may follow these. But if it’s because they want you to follow a norm simply say you’re not breaking any rules.
There is a distinct difference with being rebellious and being reckless. They are not the same. If something has a serious possibility of harming others or yourself don’t do it. To rebel is to fight conformity and stand out. It’s not to harm and be dumb. To rebel is to be original and not to demean others. You have to learn how to choose your battles. Another thing to keep in mind is that you don’t have to be alone. You don’t have to be this lone wolf to be a rebel. Being nice to people is still a nice thing to do and having real friends is healthy too.
There are real consequences to serious actions. So, break rules, not laws. Remember, rules NOT laws.
You know how to THINK like a rebel, ACT like a rebel, and to be responsible. Being a rebel is an attitude. The next step is finding your cause and fighting for it. Align your actions with your passions. Be a rebel but have dignity.
Let’s paint an image, imagine a world where everything is super advanced. Where you could actually see flying cars instead of youtube videos of it saying that they exist. And, a world where the sky is truly the limit and people take advantage of it, in a good way. A world where you put on your calendar to meet up with your cousin who recently moved to mars for a few days then return back to earth. Another way to see this would be a world that also has the same technology as seen in Wakanda (to all those whose seen Black Panther “WAKANDA FOREVER!!!”).
Okay, okay back to the topic. Wait, what was it again?
Oh, yeah, having a really really really advanced world which is in no comparison to our world (for now).
Let’s explore more about this with Michio Kaku in his chapter on advanced civilizations. Who is Michio Kaku exactly? First, in my opinion, he is an awesome scientist. He is also an American theoretical physicist, futurist, and popularizer of science. Okay, now that we’ve covered that back to advanced civilizations. It was actually in 1964 when Russian astronomer Nikolai Kardashev introduced the classification of advanced civilization. Initially, Kardashev came up with 3 types of civilizations which are the following:
Type I civilization:
a.k.a the planetary civilization
this civilization would be able to employ all the energy that reaches the planet and all the energy it can produce
This energy is solar, thermal, hydro, wind, and more
Michio Kaku predicts we would have control over things such as earthquakes, the weather, and volcanoes
With research, it was found that this type of civilization would harness the power of 7 x 107
To get to this state, we would have to boost our current energy production to 100,000 times
We are estimated to reach this stage in about 100-200 years
Type II civilization:
Would also probably be classified as an interplanetary civilization, too
We would be able to use the total energy of our sun (a star)
Have the ability to move planets and stars
To accomplish harnessing the energy of a star, we would be using a megastructure called the Dyson Sphere
We are estimated to reach this stage in about 1000-2000 years
Type III civilization:
at this point, everything would be different from today
We’d have space travelers zooming everywhere
And, the norm would possibly be cyborgs
We would also have the power to use the energy of an entire galaxy
This, as Michio Kaku is estimated to happen in about “one hundred thousand years and possibly not for a million years”
Type o to Type I
In case you were wondering, we are a Type o at the moment and for quite some time, too. The first thing that we would have to do is change from Type o to Type I. Now, we have some obstacles that are preventing and slowing down the process of actually advancing forward and helping our world socially and technologically to reach the next stage. As Michio Kaku writes, “the biggest threat facing a Type I civilization may be a self-inflicted one” and some of the challenges include “global warming, bioterrorism, and nuclear proliferation”.
Problems preventing the transition from Type o to Type I
Expanding on the problems, global warming, which has been a threat to humanity has countless evidence which Kaku notes, the following:
EVERY major glacier on the Earth is receding
The Northern polar ice has thinned by an average of 50 PERCENT over the past fifty years
Large parts of Greenland, which are covered by the world’s second-largest ice sheet, are tawing out
A section of Antartica the size of Delaware, the Larsen Ice Shelf C, broke off in 2017, and the stability of the ice sheets and ice shelves is now in question
The last few years have been the hottest ever recorded in human history
The Earth’s average temperature has increased by the 1.3 degrees Celsius in the past century
On average, summer is about one week longer than it was in the past
We are seeing more and more “one-hundred-year events,” such as forest fires, floods, droughts, and hurricanes
Another great danger which the world and humans face which have been there for quite some time is diseases, plagues, and epidemics. The influenza epidemic killed an estimate of 50 million people whereas the war itself had it’s estimated down to 20 million less than that of influenza. The problem with this? There is such a thing as a weaponized biogerms. Yes, I know, terrible, if there is such a ferocious disease which gets created and released it has the potential to eliminate 98% of the human population! These are some of the things that have made it difficult for our advancement. Breaking from this would be a difficult job and a challenge when we emerge to a new civilization. But, if we work together, stop the competition, the inequality and put our awesome minds together, maybe we could transition to a better and advanced civilization compared to where we are now.
Future civilizations may change and evolve. But, with the decisions that are made today, in this century will help in determining whether that change would be better or for worse. If we take the right steps and choices, it may be possible to be living in a world where we have laser porting (which is a future way of traveling[g to the stars in light speed), space elevators, programmable matter, robotic construction, fusion power, asteroid mining, and a better-civilized world….
….and maybe (MAYBE) we might be living in a really cool world like in WAKANDA. Am I right?!?!
Hope you’re having an awesome day, afternoon, or night! Till the next blog, bye!!
Quote of awesomeness: “The fears we don’t face becomes our LIMITS” ~ Robin Sharma
We’ve at least experienced countless times throughout our life. Right? I mean, it can come from the smallest of things. Like, that time you checked your bag for your phone and couldn’t find yet it was in your hand or right in front of you the whole time. Or, that time you left the house, locking the door but then you stop in your tracks, eyes widening in horror as you feel uncertain if you brought your house keys out with you. That feeling of fear which drains your face making you look pale as if you’ve seen a ghost. That’s the feeling which most would experience when faced with such circumstances, but is this always a bad thing, is it a good thing? Yes and no. Huh? I know, confusing. But, it’s okay we’ll clear the confusingness in a bit.
The California Science Museum is a great place which has an area all about what this thing called fear is. Let me tell you what I learned when I visited this (very very very awesome and educational and fun and cool) museum! It seems that in society, the feeling of fear grows stronger as more people get scared or afraid? And, just a simple tweet or news from the media, some politician, famous person, or interest group could easily spread such feeling of fear. However, fear also does have a role in today’s entertainment and an example for this would movies! Yes, people do buy tickets to watch that new scary movie which they would probably regret later on as they leave the theatre on purpose. And, because of how fear grabs our attention even though we might not enjoy it all the time, it helped in forming what shows in movies, television, magazines, books, and even popular novels. This shows how fear and culture have shaped each other.
When faced with a scary or dangerous situation, the three responses which most do are Fight, Flight, and Freeze. Let’s put the three responses to action! Scenario time!!:
One day you find yourself hiking with your friends. It’s a beautiful sunny day and you start wondering why you tried to stay at home earlier as your friends bugged you on coming with them. You and your friends are having an awesome time as you lead the way going back home. Suddenly, in the corner of your eye, you spot a spider a few feet in front of you. The thing is you have arachnophobia which is the fear of spiders and this odd feeling in your stomach starts to overcome you and you suddenly:
Cry? Kick? Scream?
“SPIDER!!!!!!”, you scream so loud the ground seems to tremble.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that you start punching the spider, although that would be quite hard considering the spider would see you coming and try dodging you. Also, considering the arachnophobia, going nearer to the spider or even touching would probably not be the best or first idea to come to mind. To fight could also mean to just cry or scream. This response would be on the more responsive side when faced with a situation such as this.
run. Run. RUN. RUN!!!! – yours truly, brain
The spider seems to agitate you as you look directly at it. You get this feeling that it the spider is giving you an intense scare which makes your heart skip a beat. Suddenly, the only message your brain fires at you is: run. Run. RUN. RUN!!!! You take one more glance at the hairy creature minding its business (possibly nibbling on a leaf, if spiders even do that), a shiver going down your spine, and you start running as fast as your feet could go. Your friends watch as you zoom past them as if you were the flash. All you want to do is get as far away from the spider. This response, my friend, is the flight (no you don’t actually fly, though that would be cool) when faced with situations like this, you run.
You take one look at the spider. You stop talking and the thoughts of the beautiful sunny day and the joke your friend just made which made you send a thunderous roar of laughter fades away. Your heart is pounding and you just want to scream or run but your feet seem to plant in its place and your mouth stays shut. The fear slows the flow of blood to your skin redirecting it to the skeletal muscles causing the color of your face to be drained, and causing you to look pale. Your eyes are wide open and glued to the spider as if you were anticipating its next moves. Your friends wave in front of your face as sweat drips down your brow. “Don’t. Move.” this is what your brain seems to signal throughout your body as faced with a fearful situation such as this.
Which response would you do?
Fear helps us because it keeps us safe. Like, in the movie Inside Out with all the emotions going on in Riley’s head, fear was able to keep her safe a few times. An example would be when she was running but then the fear emotion suddenly stopped her as she came close to a wire, fearing she would have tripped.
The museum even has like these small hubs with different fears like the fear of sound! I sat down then suddenly this loud sound when off and yes I jolted which was also recorded then showed to me in slow motion.
Stop laughing, it’s not funny. I mean, fine, just a little. But, anyway the fear is innate as it’s been with us since birth- I read it in the museum so my reaction was completely (very funny actually, my parents and sisters couldn’t stop laughing) normal.
There are so many things to learn about this and interactive fun stuff to do at the California Science Museum. I’m sure you’ll enjoy!
Annoying ways that fear can pop up and just ruin something:
You walk up to the stage encouraged as you start to speak.
You look at the audience and the crowd seems to be astonishingly big. Then your glossophobia jumps in. And, then you end up saying:
“Friends, Romans, countrymen lend me your (suddenly your fright comes in and you say)- fears”. Huh? Wasn’t it supposed to be ears? Oh well, must have been that scare.
Hope you’re having an awesome day, afternoon or night! Till my next blog, Bye!
Our third day begins with some Longganisa and eggs. Excited, we left to the mangrove eco – park. One of the men, Denise, who works at the park called us. We went to him and he pointed to a bucket and told us he caught two mud – lobsters. Ate Aga picked it up, but we only saw one mud – lobster. We told him there was only one, then he said that the other men ate it. I was shocked, but after, he said it might have just been a crab. So, which really ate it? I guess we had to accept it. It affect us that much.
Denise showed us another passage to enter the starting of the park because there will be a wedding. The wedding was starting in the afternoon but we have to be prepared. We can’t just walk through a wedding all muddy and stinky.
Unfortunately, when we checked our traps nothing popped up. We left the traps behind and went to our first station. The first two mounds we dug with our hands and when we used the shovel, it kinda went terribly wrong because the mounds got clogged. The third one was going alright and deep but high tide was coming. A few minutes after, we started to pack up. Luckily, we hung our bags on a branch. The water was already on our knees. You could see some worms and other weird bugs floating around already.
We trudged under the bridge and through the mud where we could hear the music from the wedding. And, today we learned many different things from the local people who work in the park. They told us how they cut down the nipa and sell them for about 300 PHP per sack. It’s exciting learning about their culture here and because they stay here every day they know a lot of things about mangroves and mud lobster and other wildlife.
It’s beautiful how they take care of the land so much. They know how to find the right food. But, we need to make more people aware. And, not just aware but also care about these mangroves. Are you in?
We went back to the park to check out our traps and the mangroves. This time, we came at 8:00 am. The sun was shining through the trees and the birds were chirping beautifully. We arrived at our trap site.
Did we catch any?
From afar we could see the trap was touched by something. The trap was deactivated, but by what? We walked down the muddy stairs and to the traps. One was under a bridge and the other was near the oldest tree. We got both the traps and checked them. We were able to peek through a small hole which was created for inserting the paddle. We saw a claw and an antenna. It was possible that it was just a crab, but I guess we’ll find out soon.
We slowly lifted the opening for the creature to get out. On the other end of the trap, we put a container to catch it. We didn’t know exactly how the attitude of this animal was. We prepared to catch it as a mix of excitement and curiosity took over. We surrounded our trap and waited patiently. Silence filled the air. You could probably hear a leaf fall from a mile away.
But, fortunately for us, slowly it came out. It meaning the mud – lobster. We closed the lid of the cylindrical container. The mud – lobster pushed the cover and was trying to claw its way up. Very intelligent animals, indeed. It stopped moving when I ventured toward the container it was in. I put a small stick in front of its face to see what it would do. It didn’t move but after a few seconds, it loudly tried to clamp it with both its claws.
After capturing the mud – lobsters we went back to our second plot. We measured the starting of the plot and went further inland. We noticed there were a lot of Nypas on one of the mounds. We studied how the other mounds were surrounded by other kinds of plants. We were trying to measure the other mounds on the other side but it was covered with Acanthuses and Nypa Fruticans. After measuring all the mounds visible, we went back to the old tree.
Since we found some interesting things happening on this small piece of an island with the tree, we decided to make a plot there. The circumference of the whole island was 18 M 77. We wanted to look at the mud – lobster better so we decided to let it go for awhile. Scared it would run, we tied a small piece of string to its body creating a leash. It looked pretty funny, leashing a lobster. After realizing they are actually very, very slow we just unleashed them. We barricaded their surroundings with small logs and pieces of stick we found lying around, even an old boot. The biggest mud – lobster kept escaping and trying to get into one of the holes. They both stopped moving so we put them back into their containers.
We decided the best idea was to set up the traps in the same mound to check if more than one lobster lived in it. After setting up the traps, and nearly catching some mudskippers, we rested on top of one of the open bridges. This bridge wasn’t completely finished so the sides had no railings yet. We spotted a medium-sized jellyfish that got itself tangled up in the vines. It was beautiful and after few minutes untangled. The cool breeze was passing as I stared through the binoculars. I could barely make out the sweet songs of the birds anymore. The sun started to fall and the night was filled with partying crickets.
It’s been two hours since we left the trap and made a decision to check them out. We steadily made out our way with some flashlights. The ants started to appear everywhere, we could barely touch the railings for support. There was this one time when we found five ants all tearing up one ant. It was crazy. We did our nocturnal prospection for maybe 45 minutes. We went back and forth quietly trying to spot some mud – lobsters burrowing away. On our way out we closed all our lights and stared into the sky. All the stars were out, and the moon was like a shimmering diamond. We told each other stories and left back to go home.
We’ve finished freshening up and we were just laying around studying. We could see the flashes of lightning through our window. There was no after sound with the lightning in a long time. The silence in the air was occupied by the sound of the aircon. All of a sudden a loud boom came screaming through my ears. I jumped, accidentally pulling off my earphones with it. We all looked at each other, surprised. The ground shook for me, it felt so close by. It was past 9:00 pm so we decided to sleep already.
Our wake up call was thirty minutes earlier than our normal routine and we all started to prepare. My roommates and I changed quickly and then headed down to meet up with the others. As all the colored groups assembled, we headed out team by team into the limestone forest. We went our normal route to one of the beaches as we were getting hyped for the day.
Apparently, we were doing bird watching! It was a really fun adventure. Each team was handed three pages of different birds each. We spotted a few migratory birds in the distance which seemed to be lounging on top of a branch. As we walked near the end of the beach, we started to play these learning games. Before the answers were revealed, we were given chances to guess the answer to their questions about birds. This also helped teams to earn more points and really just have fun. A few of the questions asked were:”
Q: “How many species of birds are found on Danjugan Island?”
A: “72 species are found on the island”
Q: “Which bird sounds like a witch laughing?”
A: “Umm, Philippine Cuckoo Dove?”
Everyone was putting their ideas and asking their questions and really learning. As questions about which bird was this or that came up, everyone stared intently at their laminated papers of bird species. There was a time when one of the AL’s asked which birds had a yellow body and black tail me and another camper both screamed “BLACK-NAPED ORIOLE!”. Just in case you were wondering, the number of points earned for this question was 1000 and I couldn’t help but try. We got it correctly and I and the other camper split it into 500 each for our teams.
A bird that stuck to my mind as we went on with our interactive lesson was the bird called Olive-backed Sunbird. It was a small but beautiful bird. The male (olive-backed) Sunbird had a shiny bluish breast which was used to attract the female birds. Did you know that male birds are sometimes way more attractive compared to the female birds? An example of a certain type of bird compared with its opposite sex is the following:
[Disclaimer: I do NOT own these photos.]
The bird on the right is the male while the bird on the left is female. According to Scientific American, it was Charles Darwin who “developed much of the theory that helps explain this. He proposed that traits promoting survival in individuals are favored by the process of natural selection, whereas traits that help the individuals of just one sex (usually the males) compete for mates are favored by sexual selection. Sexual selection is responsible for many of the features unique to one sex in a given species. These features can be divided into two general categories: those acting as weapons that allow males to fight for access to females (antlers on deer, for example) and those acting as ornaments that attract the attention of females, such as long tails on birds”.
So long story short, some males have the different burst of colors and other features to use as weapons against other males to access female birds and attract female birds to mate.
Another activity we did was identify different species of birds according to their sound! As the AL grabbed her phone out and started to play a bird sound, the beach seemed to hush as all the campers huddled around trying to remember what kind of bird it was. This was fairly hard as we’ve gotten a few birds mixed up. I forgot to mention, but last night, we were also learning the bird sounds and which bird it matched to. Another thing we learned was the anatomy of a bird.
After we finished spotting birds and trying to name them as they swooped by us, we headed back to the camp to enjoy some breakfast.
7:30 – 9:00 am
After eating our breakfast, we all just relaxed for about 15 minutes as we played some board games and talked about we learned and other things.
We then started our lecture about Climate Change and Renewable Energy. Did you know that in 2015, it was recorded as the hottest year? Did you know that 2016 is recorded as the hottest year in history? And, did you know that 2017 is set to be the hottest year next? You’ve probably heard it all. The climate change is getting worse. Our Ice Caps are melting. Our polar bears losing their homes. Beach fronts and other cities are starting to sink. Heat waves are taking people’s lives. This has been a major problem for a long time.
Did you know that the kids and plenty of other people and families have to wear a mask as they live their lives in Beijing? Below are pictures from an article written by Mashable where they wrote about Beijing such as:
When Sean Gallagher first visited Beijing in 2005, they simply called it “fog.”
The British photographer, who has lived in Asia for the past decade, noticed that very few people in Beijing truly considered the city’s notorious air pollution much of an issue.
That attitude shifted in 2006 when Beijing hosted the Summer Olympics and the city’s choking pollution became an issue in the Chinese press.
“It entered people’s consciousness, but wasn’t something people took action to protect themselves against,” Gallagher said.
Nine years later, they wear the mask.”…….
At least the Chinese government is taking this seriously and making changes like they “banned new coal-fired power plants in major cities” and China’s renewable energy is doing great.
Yes, this is just one of the many problems that are occurring. Another example is what is happening in India. There have been so many heat waves that have victimized thousands of people. In 2010, 1300 lives were gone. In 2013, 1500 lives were taken. In 2015, another heat wave came and took 2,500 lives more. Also, there are “tens of millions of Indian lives” that are in poverty which also puts about 1.3 billion people (a quarter of India’s population) who doesn’t have electricity and lives on less than $1.25 a day to have no air – conditioner (which is seen as middle-class luxury) and struggle in finding a way to survive through the terrible heat (Waldman).
Before continuing, I shared to the camp my own experience of the Yolanda Typhoon which some say was the effect of climate change. We had to barricade our windows as the wind kept hitting it and composing these loud shaky sounds which made us worry about our windows breaking. We also had to go through about 1 month of brown out which was hard as we took turns at night to fan each other and help exchange flashlights and candles to navigate our way through the house at night. One thing which I was utterly terrified about was our neighborhoods restaurant’s roof flew off. The roof was big and strong and destroyed a couple of houses just a couple blocks from our house. If you looked down when you go outside, you could see leaves or smithereens of rocks going around in small circles which just showed the directions the winds were moving, which seemed to be everywhere.
Other campers told their experiences as well. We then went on from the drastic changes the earth has gone through and climate changes and tipping points to renewable energy.
We all raised our hands as we tried guessing and explaining the different types of renewable energy and what we know about them. What is “Renewable Energy” or “Green Energy” you might ask. Well, it’s energy which is generated from natural sources such as the sun, the wind, water or hydro, the rain, the tides, and geothermal heat. The good thing about renewable energy compared to coal is that it won’t deplete or run out and (AND) it’s naturally replenished.
As you may have heard, there are already many different types of renewable energy such as:
Hydroelectric Energy (Energy from Water)
Biomass (Energy from Plants)
I feel that we all are competent to save our world and restoring it back to it’s healthier self. If we all and try to do our part even if it’s just a little (such as spreading the word or not littering) we could make a difference.
9:30 – 12:00
After learning more on climate change and renewable energy, each group was given a piece of manila paper and some crayons. We were going to draw down what we loved most or enjoy about mother nature. We put a line to divide the paper for four people in our group (just like everyone else). When we all finished our assignment, each group showed their drawing to their teammate. Each group was quietly explaining why we drew what we drew to each other. My idea was to draw a tree because I’ve grown up loving trees and walking through them in the quiet and beautiful forests. I also love how trees help to make air and have shelters for birds and other animals and look magnificent. Then, I added a saw next to a tree and the money sign. For the last requirement, I drew a sign that showed no plastic and no deforestation. All the other campers did an amazing job, too! Another camper from another group color drew a group of fish, cyanide, and trash (like plastic) being thrown in the water and then to protect these awesome creatures were MPA or MSA areas which are also known as Marine Protected (or Secured) Area.
After this, we were all then handed another sheet of Manila paper and told to draw a symbol. A symbol of mother nature. Or, just nature.
As everyone sat on their separate tables with their group, we all seemed to be thinking. Four minds for each group were just quite for like two minutes just wondering what would be a good idea.
Eventually, the cabana was filled with excited talk about what their project would be. In my team (the white group, YEAH!), we made up the idea to draw a big shield with trees, fish, animals, and even a mountain to fill some of the space up. Outside the shield, we put smoke, cyanide and other things that affect nature. When everyone else finished, each group was supposed to show the drawing that we made as a well as an explanation about it. As our turn came up, we had this small debate going on about who would talk about it. I immediately got the paper and held it up so that I would be the holder and not the speaker. Eventually, we coordinated into all speaking up a little. We told everyone we wanted these things inside the shield to be protected and everything outside to be stopped or lessened. Another camper from another group color actually told the ALs to give us some extra points because of the inspiration for the shield idea.
We refueled our minds with some snacks that they handed out like puto.
After this, we prepared for a little island exploration and ventured into the limestone forest.
12:30 – 5:00 pm
L. U. N. C. H. Party lunch!!! We were celebrating one of the campers birthdays! I was surprised haha. A cake came in and everyone started singing. After getting a slice and some spaghetti.
Before I tell you what happened next, I just need to say I was innocent. I was not the culprit and I don’t know how I got dragged into this. I was just sitting there with my cake eating and having a happy life when one of my friends smudged a cake on my face. I paused for awhile trying to understand the situation. I laughed before standing up and getting ready to get them back. Then, a few of my other friends targeted me and I just got them back. Hahaha. It was a good moment and time.
We were actually given a 2 hour “free time”. We had the choices to just hanging out with other, kayak, swim and others. A few campers chose to do some snorkeling and I decided to do some kayaking with some friends. An AL had to accompany us because of the recent spottings of boxed jellyfish. I rowed around the Morey lagoon looking at the bottom to find some urchins. We even saw some fire corals! I nearly bumped into a few things but eventually, I decided to go back to shore because the sun just wouldn’t stop heating us up.
After awhile, we may have regretted the decision in not joining the group of campers who recently left to snorkel. The first group which left used the boat to get to their destination. As we just sat on the beach wondering what to do, we saw a few campers with an AL who were about to swim somewhere. We asked if we could join them and they gladly waited for us. We quickly changed, got our snorkel and swam. We swam all the way to the boat. Then, we swam all the way to the other campers who were pretty far from the boat. They were surprised to see us but then we all started looking down into the deep ocean to look for some sea creatures.
We got so lucky!! There were about 20 big and long barracudas below us! It wasn’t that close don’t worry. It looked amazing they kept swimming back and forth all together. Did you know that it’s safer to be around barracudas when they are in a group rather when they are just alone? It’s because when a barracuda is alone, they feel more insecure and uneasy which makes them attack more easily when they get scared.
More minutes pass and I realized I was the only girl left in the water with the other guys and a few ALs. We took one last look at the barracudas and a few underwater shots and swam back to the boat.
5:00 – 6:30 pm
We sat down in the dining cabana as our swimming attire slowly dripped all its water out and eventually dried up. We did another lesson but this time on mangroves for about 30 minutes. FACTS:
Q: “Why are Mangroves important?”
A: Mangroves are home to small fish and crustaceans. And, did you know that they help in calming the waters when strong waves come in and also reduce the impact from tsunamis? They even help stop erosions from happening on the shoreline, too! Mangroves pretty much are our shield against tsunamis, storms and help save lives and properties. While doing all these things, mangroves also work as a home to different animals and provide wood, fruits, seafood, medicine, and fiber.
We learned more about how they help and how important they are.
Everyone went back to their cabanas to change or prepare to go to the beach because we were going to have an activity!
The first game they asked us a question “who’s good at running or who likes to run and tag?”. One of my friends raised her hand. This game was a demonstration of silt and soil. All the other campers were silt and the It (my friend who volunteered to be the tagger) was supposed to touch us. We were given a measured big space where were suppose to run to the other side without being tagged. If we were to be tagged, then we would have to stop at our place (not moving) and try to move our arms join the tagger (but in the place we got tagged). The only person who would get to run and the tag was the It. This game was so fun and we did the second round trying to implement a good strategy. We let everyone run first and while the It is distracted with the people who first ran, we would try to run all the way to the other side. Works like a charm.
The next activity we did was in the water. And, it had TEAMWORK in it. Wait, song intermission:
“What’s gonna work? Teammmmm Workkk!!!”
What’s gonna work? Teammm Work!!!”
To those who know where this is from, You’re AWESOME! But, to those who don’t know this song, You’re Still AWESOME!!
Now, getting back to what we did…. Each group went together and the tallest went to the back and the shortest at the front (which is me). We were only three because one of our teammates wasn’t feeling so good. While we were in the water, each group had to cling on to each other in a line with the legs and had to row using their arms. We did a few races and it was tiring but really enjoyable. A few more ecology games and we started to head back to the camp after a few sunset shot.
6:30 – 10:00 pm
We were all excited to finally have a (one bucket of water) shower! When we finished showering and changed into much more comfy clothes, we waited for dinner. Some of us were just resting in our cabanas, playing some guitar, singing and talking.
After some dinner, we closed all the lights and everyone quietly looked down at the lagoon. We spotted some Bioluminescent Algae! It was glowing. Every time a fish moved, it touched the algae and made it illuminate. These algae are widespread on the surface of the water and produce a blue and green light when moved or disturbed by motion, just what the fish was doing! They produce a flash of blue-green light whenever the water they are living in is disturbed by motion.
We had a long and amazing day which everyone enjoyed. I’m looking forward to tomorrow! We learned so much today 🙂