PRE-COVID TRAVELS IN NYC, EPISODES 3 AND 4 :)
PRE-COVID TRAVEL VLOG: TAIPEI
Brain Pop: teleportation
Imagine having a teleporting machine in your house. I feel like that’d be pretty dope. I mean like aside from it being possibly one of those things I’d get broke for, I’d definitely try and gather all the cents I have and purchase my own. I’m just blabbing here but LEGIT THINK ABOUT IT. First off, that kind of technology is so cool. bruh. LIKE just calling your friend and be like “Dude yeah I’m just grabbing my bag and I’ll teleport there. Give me like 5 minutes.” WOAH. Wait, would that mean we wouldn’t need like cars and airplanes anymore since the mode of transportation would just be TELEPORTING?!?!?! That’s if the government would install a public device out there for people to use. Which, if teleporting device does successfully get made and operated, I hope they do. But, what’s the current situation on teleportation? Wellllll, taking a few steps back and getting a small glimpse of this sweet sweet thing called quantum physics, there are a few technical difficulties that we seem to discover. This type of transportation requires absolute (ABSOLUTE) precision. From location A to location B, what would be happening is that you’d be scanned at location A and then teleported to location B. Kind of like a fax machine ish, but like on a super extra complicated and subatomic level. Also, not to mention that you will have to technically die first as you’re basically having the (more than) trillion atoms that make up your body be copy-and-pasted into the destination that you plan to be teleported. It would be you but like not really. TAKE NOTE that this reconstruction would have to be exactly precise, else another problem would occur. It’s crazy and there’s just so much to consider when it comes to teleportation and all the nitty-gritty details along with it. There’s more development being discovered with teleportation and quantum entanglement. Although human teleportation currently only exists in the movies, we’re moving forward as teleportation in the subatomic world of quantum mechanics evolve. After doing a little bit more research about this and realizing how the teleportation device would hypothetically work, I’m starting to have second thoughts hahaha. Riding a car and airplane isn’t too bad you know, plus it’s an adventure. So, I might pass on the whole teleportation-copy-paste-atoms thingy for now. So, anywho, that’s the brain pop for today. What do you think about it? If a machine did exist now, would you use it?
Old Town Monrovia, California BABY!
Location: Monrovia, California
I’ll be honest, I’ve never heard of Monrovia (like ever) until I got there. And, at the start, I was kind of just a melting pot of emotions (mainly confusion (like where the heck are we), a teaspoon of anger- scratch that more like A TABLESPOON, a cup of excitement, heaps of curiosity, and the rest is just random bits of feelings, another story another blog type of thing you know- ANYWAY) when I arrived at night sometime in December of 2017.
It was a change of scenery, moderately chilly, and I couldn’t really tell the vibe of the city yet as I was still half asleep in the car ride during our arrival. All I could make out was the mountains that gleamed under the moonlight and the few palm trees that greeted me with a steady sway. sweet.
FEW MONTHS IN…
Fast forward to a couple months in, I was in love. Found in the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains in the San Gabriel Valley of L.A. county is Monrovia (named after the founder, William Monroe). A 30 minute (really it depends on the traffic) drive to the City of Angels, about 20 miles. Pinpointing it, even more, just 10 miles from Monrovia, you’ll hit Pasadena, and 14 miles from Monrovia is the N.A.S.A’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (PRETTY COOL RIGHT). There’s just so much more fascinating things about this place from filmed tv shows and movies to a library room with ancient books (okay, okay not really ancient but more like old, ooold, oollld books- you get the point) that will blow your mind. Let’s dive right into it.
The perimeter that I’m going to be focusing on today, however, will be Old Town Monrovia. What is that? You may be wondering, I shall get into detail right now, don’t worry. Okay, so, Old Town Monrovia is considered the heart of the city. All along the street, you’ll find buildings rich with history. Just a heads up, Monrovians take their building and history preservation quite seriously. That is why you may notice that there are quite a few landmarks, buildings, and even homes (very victorian style btw) that truly show the outstanding style of architecture tied in with the legacy and past of Monrovia. While the outside of the buildings is old-style, you walk right in and you get the modern-day style back, a perfect blend.
art, Art, ART
Aside from the aesthetic brick buildings and quaint historical landmarks, Monrovia is filled with art- EVERYWHERE. This is all thanks to the Art in Public Places Committee and Art in Public Places program. Take a stroll around Old Town and you’ll find art on the floor, walls, meter blocks, and even trash cans. Murals of wings, airplanes, poetry written on the floor, beautiful designed doors and gates, and so much more. Here’s some of the art they have around:
- Mark Twain (location: library)
- Red Box Car (location: paragon)
- Library Mural (location: library)
SAMSON THE HOT TUB BEAR
This is something I couldn’t leave out. You take a walk around and I bet you that you’ll bump into a painted bear statue whether it be in the library, chilling like a tourist, or at the park. Might as well get acquainted with him. Who is this dude anyway? First off, it’s a bear- get it right, and second off his name is Samson the Bear. Let me tell you the scoop. It was around the 1990s when this particular 500 pound California black bear found it’s way to Monrovia. He often made trips up and down the foothills, contemplating life, treating himself to some food from fruit trees and trash cans. Word spread about this bear and his adventures as he often was found chilling in hot tubs. However, in 1994, Samson fell ill and was going to be euthanized, news spread quickly, and Samson was saved. Together, Monrovians, the Orange County Zoo, and the San Gabriel Valley raised $125,000, which went into construction for the beloved Samson’s habitat, which fed him greatly and even provided him a pool! Samson is pretty special, you see.
Filming in progress
guys. GUYS!! Monrovia has had some amount of movies filmed there. I’ve had my fair share of seeing films being filmed at Old Town itself! I found it particularly entertaining when they switched out signs of restaurants and all to suit the need of the film. And, during times when the background people were needed to act as casual as possible (which I witnessed, by the way, very cool), I swiftly breezed by the professional-looking dudes in suits who seemed like they missed their much-needed cup of coffee and tapped their pen on what looked like an important binder thing quite a few times.
Okay, first let’s start at Monrovia High School where A Cinderella Story was filmed. In my opinion, a classic. I did go to school there for about a year and a half and knowing that Austin Ames has walked in the school hall that I walked in is a dream come true (I’m overreacting here, but I’m just saying that I found it pretty damn cool). Some movies that filmed in Monrovia:
- American Pie (location: 402 South Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia)
- Legally Blonde (location: 625 South Myrtle Avenue, Monrovia)
- Not Another Teen Movie (location: Monrovia High School)
- The Lost World: Jurassic Park
- A Cinderella Story (location: Monrovia High School)
- A Quiet Place (location: 304 N Canyon Blvd, Monrovia)
And, that’s just to name a few!! Pretty cool, huh.
Monrovia Park Library
Hands down one of my favorite places. For reals. In case the name didn’t entirely give out the picture, IT’S A PARK AND A LIBRARY. A big one too, might I add. Starting outside, there’s enormous patches of grass, benches along the walkway that leads to this fountain, a game table, a big park at the back with swings, climb-y thing-os, a slide, and other park stuff, more benches, and picnic tables. There are a lot of events that are held in the library area, which usually have pizza served (I know because I’ve volunteered quite a few times during events and I have never not seen pizza served… coincidence? I THINK NOT). It’s a perfect place to read a good book while being out for fresh air, play some soccer, walk around, journal, and play with your dog. I’d say the best time to go and hang outside would be when it’s cloudy but the sun still peeks up over the whole place while the wind sings along the breeze. perfecto.
side note: there was a time I was “throwing” a football in front of the library (if you can even call it a throw) as I was playing with my sisters when this guy came up to us (probably in pain by seeing us countlessly struggle and fail to throw, although I’d give us points for trying) and offered to help. Apparently, he was a football coach (the luck was definitely in our favor) and saw how much we sucked (he didn’t say that btw he was actually really nice about it) so he offered to help. Ten minutes later, me and my sisters were basically pros. We could literally throw the football straight to each other with our eyes closed. And, yeah that was fun, that’s my lil story at the library.
Now, on the inside is even better. When you enter, there’s a little store that you’ll find to your left which is called the Friend Store where you can buy books, DVDs, magazines that are pretty affordable, and, at times, excellent finds. Next, there’s a room to the right which known as the community room where events are held and activities take place in. When you continue your journey inside, you’ll be faced with the front desk where you can check out your books, get your library card, and more. There are two main sections: To the left, you’ll see the Youth section and to your right, the Adult section. As you may have guessed, the Youth section is more of the library’s bustling side where you can talk with your normal voice volume. You can also find computers, a baby area with toys and everything, and a room known as the Story Room where other events are held, too. The Adult section has a Teen section with tables to study on, computers to use, couches, and books. And, continuing on in the Adult area, this is where the study rooms you can reserve for few hours (it works as a first come first serve) are found, shelves after shelves of books on an array of topics, computers, printers, a magazines area and remember I mentioned the ancient area earlier? Actually, it’s called the Heritage room, and let’s just say my brain thinks that somewhere hidden might be a book on the existence of Damon Salvatore, or not, you never know.
reminder: If you ever find yourself in this beautiful library, GET A LIBRARY CARD.
There’s so much more than what meets the eye and pre-covid times, the volunteering community is one fun place to be at and help.
another side note: The library park is actually located next to the community center.
This is probably my favorite day of the week, aside from Saturday, Sunday, and Wednesday. Friday nights are absolute the best in Old Town Monrovia. This is because of the street fair that’s set up along Myrtle (they have safety precautions set it place like social distancing, etc.). A few blocks get closed off from 5 pm to 9 pm and lil vendors set up. The end is usually filled by food trucks and live music playing. There are plenty of stalls selling many different things from fresh honey to strawberries to floppy hats and shades to bubble machines and so much more. ALSO (I’m not sure if it’s open yet due to Covid) they have this like area where you can go and feed and pet animals like horses, bunnies, a donkey, goats, turtles and more. I may or may not have been charged at by a llama because of the cup I had filled with its preferred food, a total misunderstanding which was worked out at the end by the way. There’s even like this rock climbing area. You’d probably be surprised about how much that part of the city can change from a quiet lil area where cars just pass every now and then to a music-filled street fair with dancing and activities and all. It’s truly something to see.
Hiking, walking, and all that jazz
This goes out of Old Town Monrovia radius but I’ve got to mention it. Parks, waterfalls, hiking trips. There are many places to go hiking and let me tell you it’s absolutely amazing. Although I struggle climbing up the mountain, it’s worth it. So for the hikers out there reading this or those thinking about hiking you’ll find a place in Monrovia to do so.
There’s more. A lot more but this where I’ll be stopping today. Monrovia is a charming little city. The community is absolutely great and I’m definitely going back one day to visit and eat some ice cream. Hope you found this blog to be interesting. See yah in the next one. Bye! Love you! Stay safe! Social distance!
© Elizabeth Anne Villoria
Travel Vlog to Boracay Island!
Travel Vlog to Manila, Philippines!
#Idea: SpaCE eleVAtor
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:
- The weather
- 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.
© Elizabeth Anne Villoria
Ibajay Journey: Third day, A Wedding
The third day in this beautiful place
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?
~ Juvenile L.O.A.S.H
Ibajay Journey: Second Day, Mangrove Exploration
Circa: JUNE 7, 2016
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.
~ Juvenile L.O.A.S.H
You must be logged in to post a comment.