February 28

Hey hey hey, readers!!!!

WOW, well, those last 2 weeks have gone be SO quickly, I didn’t even realize it! Well, it’s been a fun 2 weeks; much better than before!

Ok, so first thing, I am now medically ungrounded!!! Which means, I am flying once again! YAY! But like the ying-yang sign, there is always some bad in good things. Mine is that even though I resumed flying, my flight instructor may be leaving soon! I really don’t want him to leave because he has to be one of the greatest and most genuine guys I have ever met! I definitely will miss him, but all the best to who I believe is the best flight instructor EVER and in turn, one of my good friends..Patrick Tuttle!

PROJECTS, TESTS, DEADLINES!!! Most of which have been overcome! YES! WOO HOO! I am now finding some time to relax a little bit! Thank god! But I am sure things will be picking up soon (if not, then I’m not in college..hehe).

So, because a lot of pressure is off my back and I can see the light after all that work, I decided to kinda pamper myself this past weekend. So, my friend Matt S., (who I absolutely love and respect), and I went to the mall and did a little shopping. Then, we both went to dinner at one of my favorite restaurants that has the BEST desert to me in Daytona Beach – Adobe Gilas!!! So, I had a very fun and fulfilling Saturday afternoon with my good buddy Matt. So, here’s to Matt, thanks a lot for taking that afternoon off and taking me out for a great time!

Well, on a more productive note, I have been contemplating returning to Embry Riddle for summer B term and knock some classes out of the way a bit early before the harsh workload comes on and log some flight hours! I mean, I don’t know if I would be doing it yet, but I believe that it’ll be a good thing for me to do. And plus, I think 4 months is wayyy too long to me to stay away from Riddle over the summer! Haha, I will miss this place like crazy!

On the topic of vacation, what do you guys out there have planned for spring break 2007? Well, I will be heading home back to Trinidad and Tobago for that week and probably bask in the tropical Caribbean sun while sipping on a margarita (since the drinking age down there is 18..haha) on the beachside! Ok, I didn’t mean to rub it into your face if you’re stuck up north, but hey, I’ll tell ya, if you can come down to Daytona Beach for your spring break, then I would suggest you do it! This place is sooo beautiful and exciting! You can be doing the same thing I would be doing on the beach..well, except for sipping on a margarita! Haha. Oh, and you’d also get an opportunity to visit the campus if you have an extra weekday or two to spare. I would love to stay here, but it’s time to be back home with my friends and family.

Well, I think that’s all I gotta say about my past 2 weeks. Hope ya’ll enjoyed it! I’m sure when you guys get here, you would have lots of fun too.

All the best to each and every one of you out there!

Quote of the Week: “don’t settle for the one you can live with…wait for the one you cant live without” -Me..

Bye world!

February 27, 2007


My trip home last weekend went rather well. The boys of Wood 5 stayed in Daytona and suffered through the Daytona 500. They worked at the race. I’m sure they had fun, but I’m kind of glad I wasn’t here.

Over the past week I have been ridiculously sick. Apparently (according to my mom) there is something going around Virginia that I picked up and brought back to Daytona with me. I had two days of barely being able to get out of bed, and I even went to the hospital at one point. So, needless to say, this was not Cat’s Best Week Ever. Luckily, the hospital is right across the street, and I discovered that some medicine I was taking was giving me some weird symptoms.

I missed a few days of class, but if you email professors ahead of time and are legitimately ill (like if you have an E.R. bracelette), they are fairly lenient about letting you make up what you miss.

And although the dorms make it easy for illnesses to spread (which, I’m happy to say, was not the case with my plague), the good thing is – there is always someone there to check up on you and get you anything you may need. Like ginger ale. Or a bucket.

My dad flew in on Friday and parked his plane at New Smyrna (where I work). I took him to Woody’s Barbecue – which, by the way, EVERYONE should visit. It’s at Nova and Dunlawton and they have THE BEST barbecue ever. We also went to a LASER LIGHT SHOW!!!! I know, it’s so 80s. But it was the Beatles and the Beatles are awesome, so I didn’t feel too dorky.

Last night we went on a casino cruise, which seemed like a good idea, until the boat started heading out to sea and rocking back and forth and to and from and… ugh. Many of our party were not feeling well. It was kind of miserable until the bartender made us an anti-sick concoction which worked very well. Everyone lost money except Steve, who won a lot. I guess he’s just lucky.

Today my dad accompanied me to all of my classes. He seemed to enjoy most of them. And since he’s a pilot, he was interested in all of the subjects.

And that’s about it! Email me if you have questions/comments!

– Cat

February 26

HELLO TO EVERYONE! I HOPE EVERYONE IS HAVING A TERRIFIC WEEK SO FAR! I KNOW I HAVE! UH-OH, I have been typing in all caps. My apologizes. Well, I am here at Riddle (obviously) and I am having a wonderful time! I have been very busy the past two weeks and I don’t think that I am going to be slowing down anytime soon! I’ll start with my classes and then let you in on all the details of life outside of Riddle here at Daytona!

TTh – Physics 104 – Nothing too exiting going on in physics. We’re learning some new stuff and we will have a test in a week or so, which means I’ll do some studying and hopefully get another good grade. That’s pretty much it for physics. Oh, there is one thing: An 8:15 class is very very early.

TTh – Basic Aeronautics II – We took our first test last week and it went pretty well. I ended up with a 90 and I’m not sure if there is going to be a curve or anything like that. But without a curve, a 90 is pretty good, especially in my aeronautics class. We have finished talking about everything I need to know for my private pilot’s license, and now we are moving on to the topic of multiengine systems. We covered all the basic stuff last semester and up till this point and now it is time for some multiengine knowledge.

MWF – Air Traffic Control I – The class average for the recent test we just took wasn’t the best, so our professor decided to give us a quiz on some of the stuff on the test and give us bonus points. I’m not sure how I did on the quiz, but I know I did pretty well so I should be getting some bonus points. That’s what I like about college, if a professor gives a test and a lot of people miss the same questions, they take it into consideration and give you opportunities to make up the points.

MWF – Intro to Psychology – I have to admit that psych is becoming one of my favorite classes. Not only do I enjoy the subject, but I honestly believe that I have one of the best professors to teach the course. I have Dr. Kring and he makes the class very fun. He is always cracking jokes and he has a very funny personality. He is also a huge fan of star wars and he knows anything you could imagine. He challenged our class to think of a star wars question that he would know, and if we could stump him, he would let us out 45 minutes early. Well a couple people had their laptops and began typing away furiously and we shot him 5 or 6 totally random questions. We didn’t think he would get any of them right, but sure enough every question was answered correctly and he even gave extra details about it. It was kind of scary to be honest, but I thought it was pretty funny. So if you are coming here next year and you like star wars, get in Dr. Kring’s class. Or even if you just want a fun class and a cool professor, choose Kring.

Flight – I have been progressing quite nicely in my flying and I am on my way to getting my private pilot’s license. In order to get your license as a private pilot, you need to complete 3 tests: A written test, an oral test, and a practical test. The written test consists of 60 questions chosen from a bank of over 700 which might sound really difficult, but you are given all 700 somethin’ questions and answers so you know what to study. I haven’t taken the written yet, but I took several practice tests already so I will be taking the actual one soon. The oral test is right before the practical test and that consists of talking to a certified instructor (not your instructor, a different one) and he/she will ask you questions covering every aspect of flying to make sure you know what you are doing. I am studying for this constantly; I have been studying pretty much since I started learning how to fly. It isn’t a test that you cram for the night before; rather, you need to study a lot over time. Finally, you take the practical test also referred to as the check ride. The check ride is flying with an FAA instructor and they test you on everything you know; anything from maneuvers to landings. This last test is to make sure that you are safe in the skies and you know how to handle an airplane. So, as of now I am going to take my written soon, I am studying for my oral, and I am still learning things that I will need to know for my check ride. One thing that I did a couple weeks ago was my first night flight. My instructor and I took off around 8:00pm and we flew around and did some night landings. Flying at night is similar to day flying in some aspects, but then in some ways it is completely different. For example, flying into the ocean in the day time is easier to do visually because you can see the horizon to base your wings off of, but at night it is all black and you can’t tell if your wings are level. Overall though, it is pretty fun because it is such a different experience. You can’t see all the details of the ground, but rather just a sea of lights. It’s pretty wild. Also, I went on my first cross-country flight this past week. A cross-country flight is a flight where you leave your home airport with a distance of more than 50 nautical miles. Normally, we just fly around in our practice areas and go no more than 40 and usually less than 30 nm away. So we flew to Gainesville which was about 130 nm round trip if I remember correctly. We took off in Daytona and flew over 2 airports on the way there. It was pretty fun because usually you just fly around in any direction, but now we have specific headings to follow and checkpoints to go through. You have to file a flight plan which lets the airport know when you are leaving and arriving and what path you will follow in case you don’t make it there on time. If they haven’t heard from you when you are suppose to land they will send out a search and rescue until you are found. So anyway, we filed a flight plan, got in the plane and flew to Gainesville. It was really fun, but challenging. There is so much going on at certain times, and then it is completely calm at other times, so you have to manage your time in a reasonable manner. I think that I did pretty well for my first cross-country and I am looking forward to doing some more. I am already planning my next cross-countries which I will fly to Melbourne (over by Cape Canaveral), an airport right out side of Jacksonville, and St. Petersburg (over by Tampa). I’ll let you know how those go as I do them. I’m scheduled for one later this week so wish me luck!

I have to admit, these past two weeks have been so busy, and school was only 20% of it! On the 19th, the Daytona 500 took place (and I was there), my grandparents came to see the Riddle campus, I saw Ron White in concert, I saw the Blue Man Group (again!!!), and I have been doing some wakeboarding and racquetball playing. So it has been pretty busy.

All my life I have lived near Daytona and I have always been told be the people around me that come mid-February, I should stay far, far away from Daytona. I have always known that hundreds of thousands of race fans flock from any place you can imagine to Daytona to see the 500, and that’s why I have always stayed far away. Well, since this year I am living in Daytona, I decided that instead of fleeing and seeking shelter somewhere I should submerse myself in such a rich cultural environment. So, I went to the Daytona 500, and as it turns out, I had a blast! A week before the race you could already tell a major difference in the traffic and the amount of people, and it only got worse. If you have the choice to drive or not drive during race weekend, choose not to drive, unless you don’t mind getting to your destination in triple the time. But traffic aside, it is pretty wild just to see hundreds of thousands of people walking around all of Daytona. There are people everywhere, and they’re all just walking around; some this way and others that way. It gets pretty hectic but it definitely is a fun experience. Three of my friends bought tickets and their dads came down to watch the race, but they ended up having 2 extra tickets, so my roommate and I said why not. Our seats weren’t the best, but it still was incredible. We were 13 rows back or something like that so we were pretty close to the track and just hearing the loudness of all the cars was amazing. There were some pretty big wrecks, but nothing to crazy happened in front of us. We were right in the middle on the backside so we saw one wreck but nothing real remarkable. Overall, it was a lot of fun and I’m glad that I did it, but I’m still debating on whether or not I should go again next year. Well at least I have some time to make up my mind. Make sure to check out the videos and pictures website for some great shots of the 500 along with other things.

This past Thursday I went with my girlfriend and her mom and step-dad to see the Blue Man Group once again! I have to admit that even though I saw them just a couple of months ago, and the show wasn’t very different from then, it was still utterly mind-blowing! The show that those guys put on is astounding and it doesn’t get old. I would definitely go see them again if they were playing next week. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get any pictures or videos of them playing, but just take my word when I say that they put on an awesome show!

I’m not sure if there are any Ron White fans out there, but he is one of my favorite comedians. I remember listening to him years and years ago and then he got his big break with the blue collar comedy tour. His comedy isn’t for everyone, and he can definitely be on the edge with a lot of his material, but I laughed so hard at Tater Salad and all of his other jokes. If you haven’t heard his stuff before, you should check it out, as long as you aren’t easily offended and have an open mind. Because if you don’t, you probably shouldn’t listen!

This past weekend was parent’s weekend here at Riddle and I’m not sure what happened exactly, but I did see lots of parents around. I guess parents were invited to come see their kids and go to class with them and stuff like that, but I’m not really sure. By coincidence, my grandparents were in town to visit my dad so they came down to Daytona to check out Riddle. I took them on a tour of campus and showed them a whole bunch of stuff like our flight line, some flight simulators, my dorm, food facilities, some classrooms, and things of that nature. It was nice to get to see them and show them where I have been for the past 6 months.

One thing I like about being a student at Riddle is all the stuff that is happening outside of class, such as flying (well obviously), skydiving, wakeboarding, racquetballing (not really a word), golfing, and many other things. These are just some things that I do, but there is so much to offer here at Riddle. Anything from a swing dance club to writing for our school newspaper the Avion, a full list can be found here http://www.erau.edu/db/studentlife/clubs.html. I personally have been doing a lot of wakeboarding lately, well kind of. I got a wakeboard for my birthday 3 or 4 years ago, right when my dad sold his boat. So I haven’t really gotten a chance to take it out, but now that has changed. I joined the water sports club and we have a boat that we take out to a lake about 30 minutes away and wakeboard, ski, and anything that anyone wants to do. I know you are asking yourself right now, “Hey, wait a second, it is February and freezing, how can you be wakeboarding?” Well, it is cold in a lot of places, but Florida isn’t one of them right now. As I type this it is 80 degrees outside. Yes, 80. As much as that pains me to type 80, it is a good temperature for water sports. The only bad thing is that the water is a nice cool 65. Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. So hopefully the water temperature will rise soon, but until then I guess I am going to be wakeboarding and freezing at the same time. Also, my roommate has a jet ski that we take out and we go wakeboarding behind that. I have only been about 3 times now, but I have managed to get up and go in and out of the wake, but once I try to jump, I fall, hard. So I’m no where near good at wakeboarding, but someday, maybe I won’t fall all the time. So anyway, the point is, Riddle has so many things to offer to many different types of students so get excited about that!

Racquetball has become quite fun for me in the past couple days because I have started winning games! I am use to playing some of my friends and losing, which doesn’t bother me because I wasn’t that good, but I am getting better. I played doubles with my friend against our other friend and our RA and we won 3 of 4 games or something like that, so that’s always fun. I found that it generally doesn’t matter if I win or lose as long as I’m sweating and out of breath at the end of the game, then I’ll be happy. But just for the record, winning is fun and more preferable than losing.

So I guess that pretty much wraps up my journal for this week. Over the next two weeks, I should be doing some more cross-countries, taking 3 tests, seeing G. Love and Pepper in two different concerts, work on my wakeboarding skills, hopefully play some golf and racquetball (not at the same time, I already tried that, very difficult), and loads of other things! Such as not hitting bikers on the road because of bike week! Yes, life is getting crazy around here, and I love it! If life is getting pretty dull for you readers out there and you want it to be more exciting, try emailing me with some questions and I will respond as quick as I can and make your life very exciting with my humor and knowledge!!!!!!! Or you could just go rent a movie (such as The Departed which is a very good movie and has won some Oscars and things). Anyways, the point is go out and enjoy life and make the best of it. Also, if you have a dollar, put it in an envelope and mail it to someone you know. They will be very happy to receive a one dollar bill in an envelope from you!!!! I know I would!!!! See ya next time!!!!! Sorry for all the exclamation points!!!!!

P.S. Check out all the cool videos and pictures that I have posted! Also, if you want to request any pictures or videos of something, just let me know!

email: wasteofsoap@yahoo.com
aim: wasteofsoap
videos: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=blakeguiles

February 26

Hello Again Internet Friends

I am so relieved that we are approaching Spring Break. That may seem like I am starting to celebrate prematurely, but I am just getting excited for that time of year. Over the last two weeks I took an exam in all 5 classes and did crazy amounts of homework. Now that I am done with those I am relaxing for a little bit. Although, I do have another two exams coming up very quickly, so the relaxation may be short lived. I have a Thermodynamics exam on Friday and an Advanced Engineering Mathematics exam on Monday. So much studying will be done between now and then.

In other news, but still along the education line, I will be registering for Summer Session courses this Wednesday. I am actually very excited about this because I am going to be getting back on track. My first two years of college I did not take as many credit hours as I could have each semester. So I was slightly behind. However, now that I am taking courses during the summer, I am back on track to graduate on time. It is definitely a good feeling. The other nice thing to think about is the idea of being able to get back into an apartment off campus again. I like the freedom of being in my own apartment.

Outside of classes, it has not been too eventful, though I have had a couple of fun weekends. Two weekends back, my brother visited me from California. That was a great weekend. It was awesome to see family and hang out all weekend. This past weekend, we worked the Daytona 500 – that was freezing cold and miserable. Well, let me specify, working in the morning in 45 degree weather was miserable. If you saw the race, you know how awesome it was and what a great ending to the race there was. That was a fun weekend mainly because it was a long weekend.

On a side note, I wanted to thank all of the people that have read my journals and emailed me with questions. It is always appreciated when you find out your writings can help other people get a full grasp of the university. I apologize if you have written me recently and I haven’t responded yet. I try to respond to everyone as quickly as possible in between my studying schedule. Keep sending your questions: vonkr497@erau.edu or post them on the discussion board.

Oh and one more note since I mentioned summer session courses. If you decide, once you have been here, to take summer session courses, always consider all your options. If you just need to take lower level humanities courses, consider taking them at a smaller community college. I am not speaking against the university. I am simply trying to save you some money in the long run. By taking lower level courses at a community college, you can save money per credit hour, speed up your graduation time, and maybe even open up room in your course schedule for a minor. Now, when you get to the upper level courses, I recommend you take them at your primary university. This is mainly because most community colleges won’t offer the upper level courses in an engineering specific degree and even if they do, you are better off taking them at your primary university. That is just my bi-weekly college advice for this journal.

I hope all is well with everyone and I look forward to hearing from you soon.


February 21

Hey Readers!

The Spring 2007 semester is officially rolling, and believe me, I am just trying to stay with it. Time is flying this semester, and Speedweeks is again upon Daytona Beach. I have to say, the second time around is a lot easier than last year. Though I no longer have my beloved view of the speedway from my room, it still has its excitement factor.

Speaking of excitement, Embry-Riddle’s delegate of RAs rocked this year’s Florida Resident Advisor Seminar! The theme was the FRAScar’s (think Academy Awards) and we were well prepared and represented our school very well. Though we didn’t take home the Spirit Cup, (congratulations go out to the University of West Florida) we did bring home the “Most Punctual” award. (oh… joy) We had an amazing time though, and I cannot wait for next year’s seminar, in nice, sunny, Miami! I am counting the days from now.

A picture of us delegates. Yes I am the tallest person in the back. I am defined as that person in group pictures.

OK, classes are picking up and going really well. I had tests in four of my five classes this past week, and didn’t do badly on any of them. I didn’t expect to do badly, but when you have four tests in five school days, it is easy to neglect studying for one, and do a bit worse on it than on the others. I have my last of the first tests next week, and it is a milestone, because it is my first college full essay test. I am so pumped, but since it is in Air Cargo Management, it is a LOT of information. Studying will be done on this upcoming 3 day weekend.

I have also done quite a few more larger assignments than normal this semester. Most of them have been in my Business Information Systems class, because we research a lot of terms and theories, along with newer technology. I have gotten used to it, and it so refreshing not to have daily homework assignments. (I have always had a homework issue, mainly questioning the necessity of it.)

On the SGA front, we are transitioning to a new chairperson of the Student Representative Board. Our former Vice President had to resign for personal reasons, and we internally elected Shawn Storey, who ironically is one of my residents, and former Residence Life Representative, to take the position. We are becoming organized and beginning to grow into a team. Lots of good things are being done everyone, such as continuing the new shuttle service to Orlando International, which more students use than Daytona International. Personally, I am working on creating an umbrella organization for all of our cultural clubs on campus, in order for them to pool their resources and put on a great display of the diversity our campus holds. Additionally, I am working on finding a women’s speaker to bring to campus, along with talking to our new Women’s center, to find ways to make the gender differences on campus, not so much of a difference.

Another thing the SGA did was put on a faculty and staff appreciation dinner to thank everyone for the work they did putting our school back together after the tornado. It was well attended, and I can honestly say, students are extremely grateful to be back in class, having only lost three class days. ERAU has to have one of the hardest working and dedicated faculty and staff in the country.

One of the cooler things I recently did was interview prospective RA candidates for next year. It was a really great experience and the 15 candidates I met were all interesting and great in very different ways. Though all of them could not move on to another interview, I hope it was still a fulfilling experience for all of them too.

My life as an RA has taken over everything. Besides all those duties, I now am a part of the Spring Housing Banquet Committee, helping to plan, you guessed it, our Spring Banquet. It is going to be at a banquet hall in the airport, and should be amazing. Pictures will come in my last entry of this year. I promise.

Well, to wrap things up, I hope all of you are ready for Embry-Riddle, whether it be in the fall, next spring, or 5 years from now. It is a great place to be. Work hard now, the fun and even harder work begins later!

Always loading you up with the info,

February 16

WHEW!!!!!!!…well, I have NEVER been SO flustered and busy with school in my LIFE! That’s the reason why this journal submission is pretty late, and I sincerely apologize to all! Don’t think I forgot about you guys!

Anyway, HELLO WORLD! Hope all is well out there!

I am here once again to grace you with words of mine that tells about the last 2 weeks of my life here at Embry Riddle. Well, as you all may have seen at the beginning of this journal, school is getting to be a real pain in the ***! Haha..

And I’m not just referring to simply academics; this includes clubs, activities, meetings, classes, homework, projects, etc.

I simply have not been finding any time for myself lately, however, I deal with it. I keep reminding myself that college is not meant to always allow free time to relax and have fun.

Within the last 2 weeks, I have been given at least 7 big projects for classes all due within a week of each other, piles of papers to write, endless meetings and interviews with clubs and activities on campus and to top it all off, I got a job! YES, readers, Vick got an on-campus job. However, I prefer not to say what it is (because the Riddle Flight Line mafia might come get me!…haha).

The reason everyone is so busy these days is because campus life is extremely active! And also because the workload from classes is increasing very rapidly!

But as a Riddle student, we all learn how to handle the stress put on us because we are the eagles, we fly HIGH!

Ok, ok I have a lot of school pride! So what?! I LOVE this place! As busy and stressed out as I am, I will never get to hate anything about this place! Except for the noise coming from the construction of the school’s new residence hall and fitness facility, but even that is a positive because when it’s done, I’m gonna be so happy—that I will be able to use the swimming pool here! Yeah, they closed off the pool for these 2 semesters since the new fitness center is being built right next to it. But don’t worry, it will be re-opened this fall 07 semester!

Anyway, moving on to a more interesting topic that unfortunately does not please me too much.

So, on the 1st of February, I got ill with some stomach problems and had to medically ground myself from flight so I would not be able to fly while sick. Yeah, that was fine, lasted around 5 days and then literally a few hours after I got over that, I came down with the cold! So, I was still very weak and ill so I couldn’t fly! To my bad luck, that lasted for about a week in which I was still medically grounded. So, after feeling considerably better, I went to un-ground myself and the nurse told me that she couldn’t un-ground me because she believed that I was still too congested to go fly. So, to this day, I am still medically grounded and that sets me back from soloing and in turn, would probably set me back a little from getting my private pilot license too.

Well, that has been a small portion of my life here at Riddle. Hope you all enjoyed reading and once again, don’t hesitate to contact to me for anything!

Take care, out there and I wish you all a less stressful February than mine!

All the best,


Quote of the week: “Don’t frown because you never know who is falling in love with your smile!”

-One friend to another on Valentines Day

February 15, 2007

Hi, folks!

Not too much has been going on in Daytona since I last wrote a journal. The semester is well underway, and it’s been good so far. I’ve been hanging out with new friends, and old, and just generally hanging around Daytona.

Thankfully, the first batch of exams for this semester is over. A lot of the time it just so happens that you will have four or so exams in one week, or, as was the case for an unlucky friend of mine, in one day. This can be a bit stressful, but if you plan ahead it shouldn’t be a problem. A lot of the time, it’s not like high school where you can just review your notes a half hour before the test and get an A on it. So preparation is key.

Ah, let’s see, stuff that’s been going on these past two weeks. A few of my friends’ family members visited, which was nice. One of my friends had a birthday. Valentine’s Day came and went, and our hall was really great about circulating V-Day gifts. It was very sweet and the boys of Wood 5 got some good brownie points from my roommate and I.

OH YES! A run down of the first AT course, AT 300. At the beginning, it was a LOT of history (ugh, I hate history). History of the ATC system, aviation in general, regulations, legislation, etc. We also learned a few parts of the 7110.65, which I’m told is the ATC’s bible. Along with that, we learned the different types of controllers and what they are responsible for. This was helpful, since eventually I’ll have to pick which type of controller I’d like to be. As of yet, I’m still undecided, but leaning towards TRACON. So that’s AT 300 so far.

This weekend I will be going home to visit. I’m excited about it. After spending a huge winter break at home, it was difficult to come back to Riddle for a month. So my Valentine’s gift to everyone is to come home!

The Daytona 500 is this weekend, and I’m actually glad I’m not going to be here. I’m not a racing fan, and the traffic is apparently pretty bad. I haven’t looked for myself, but I’ll take everyone else’s word for it. Also, I would have had to work this weekend, which probably would have been pure hell. Perhaps I will hang around for the 500 next year.

Next weekend my father will be visiting Daytona for that student/parent weekend thing, so you’ll probably hear about that in my next entry.

As always, email me with questions, comments, etc.

– Cat

February 14

The speed at which time passes when you are immersed in the events of a semester is simply mind-boggling. We are already one month into the semester and I can hardly believe how fast the time has come and gone. In just two and a half short months, the semester will be over and I will have completed my first year at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Not to mention I will be so close to being done with my degree. That is terribly exciting. Well, let me feel you in on the recent events around Riddle.

School has been relatively uneventful because I have been so focused on classes for these first couple of weeks. I’m taking a relatively large class load and I am trying to stay on top of all my work. Actually, the most eventful activity of the last week was the Up Til Dawn Date Auction. It’s an annual event on campus that the organization Up Til Dawn hosts to raise money for St. Jude’s Hospital. All the proceeds of the event go to that charity. I was actually fortunate enough to attend that event and I also won a date by bidding during the event. It was a lot of fun and I’m sure the date is going to be loads of fun. The more important fact is that the money goes to a terrific charity and I was happy to contribute.

On the weekends, we have been just trying to relax and enjoy ourselves. We just play poker and hang out around Daytona Beach. The prospect of events and weekends to come is looking really great. We have the Daytona 500 coming up this weekend at which many ERRSA members and myself will be working. We work the morning events and then we get to watch the end of the race. After that I have a friend coming to visit me in Daytona Beach for the weekend. That weekend is going to be followed by a weekend camping trip with friends. I don’t go into much detail about these other events because the most important to me is that I am going to be turning 21 years old on the 23rd of March. It is really going to be awesome. I am looking forward to the day when I am no longer considered underage.

Unfortunately, this week’s entry is going to be rather short because I am swamped with studying for exams at the end of the week. I have both a solids and aerodynamics exam this Friday. So I am thrilled to death about all the reading I am doing. Before I close this entry, I do have one piece of advice about the start of new classes. When you start a new course every semester, take the time and be especially aware of the teaching style and speed of your professors. Each class will be different and you will have to adjust your approach for every class. Make sure you determine what it is going to take to pass your classes. If you establish customized and strictly defined study habits for every class at the beginning of the semester, you will be much more successful than you might originally think.

That’s all for this week. I hope all is well with everyone and keep your eyes on the weather and hope for the best for us here in Daytona Beach. We have had some nasty storms recently, but today is sunny and in the 70’s.

Until next time, thanks for stopping by.

February 13

Happy Valentines Day!!!!!

Here it is half way through February and it is getting pretty crazy around Daytona Beach! The races are coming up, Bike week is right around the corner, and Spring Break is not too far behind that. At Embry-Riddle things are getting hectic as well because we had our first set of tests this past week. I called last week test week because everybody I know has had a test in more than 75% of there classes. I personally have had 3 tests one on each day, Wednesday Thursday and Friday. Overall I think it went quite well, but I am still waiting for my grades on one more test. I guess now would be a good time to start with my classes:

TTh – Physics 104 – Since it was test week, I took my first physics 104 test. I already went over how I didn’t get the professor I wanted and I am stuck with a class at 8:15am every Tuesday Thursday, so I wasn’t too excited about having a test. I think that the reason I did so well last semester was due to the professor. I really enjoyed that professor and the way he presented the material. This semester, I can’t really relate to my professor’s teaching style. I find that I have to take notes, try not to listen, and then review the notes on my own time and understand the material. My professor is nice, but she just gets side tracked real easy and it’s hard to focus on multiple things at 8:15 in the morning, especially when she doesn’t take attendance. When you have a professor who doesn’t take attendance, you are tempted with sleeping in other options rather than attending class, so you really have to want to be there. Anyways, back to the test . . . I studied quite a bit and I thought that I was prepared, and I was. The test had 5 points extra credit and I ended up getting a 105. So . . . I like physics.

TTh – Basic Aeronautics II – This class still proves to be challenging. We are assigned to read a chapter for every class and we have a quiz on the chapter at the beginning of every class. So far I have been doing alright. I’m not acing (Ace-ing) every quiz, but I’m not failing them either. We are scheduled for our first test coming up this week, so I’ll let you know how that goes.

TTh – Intro to Safety – Well, as it turns out, I wasn’t that interested in safety. I went to class the first two weeks, but then I dropped the course. Even though I had more classes last semester, I was getting overwhelmed this semester, even in the first two weeks. Also, I don’t need a safety course for my major or minor so I decided that it wasn’t a good idea to over stress myself just for the heck of it.

MWF – Air Traffic Control I – We took our first test and I got a 92% on it. The class is a little dry at times, but the professor knows what he is talking about so it’s not too bad. Right now, I am just learning all the basics, so I won’t get to go into a simulator until my junior year-ish. Once I learn all the basics I will be able to go into a simulator and get first hand experience on what it is like to be in a tower and direct traffic. I can’t wait for that.

MWF – Intro to Psychology – I also took my first test in Psych this past week and I have to admit that I am a little scared. He still hasn’t posted the test scores and I am getting pretty anxious. I studied so much for this test, much more than for some of my other classes, and I’m not sure how I did. Right before the test I felt very confident and I thought that I was ready, but then he handed out the tests. I looked it over rather quickly and my confidence slowly disintegrated. Some of the stuff I knew right off the bat, but for a lot of questions I narrowed it down to 2 choices. So I could have done well, or I might not be very happy with the score. I guess we’ll see. ***Special note, I found out that I got a 92 after the curve!!!

As you know if you read my last journal (which I’m sure all of you have) it was my birthday a couple weeks ago and I received golf clubs as one of my presents. I used to golf a little bit back in the day with my dad. We live on a golf course, so I would hit around a ball every now and then, but my favorite part was driving the golf cart. So many moons later, I decided it would be a good idea to learn how to golf. I have heard from many people that golfing can be a good way to get to know someone such as coworkers and or a new/potential boss. I also have heard that golfing is much more fun if you know what you are doing rather than smacking the crap out of it. So I decided that I needed to get lessons rather than develop bad habits. As it turns out, my friend Cris has been golfing for quite some time so I got a whole bunch of pointers from him. I could already tell my improvement from swinging the club once with no idea what I was doing compared to after his tips. I think that with some practice it will be a fun thing to do on the weekends.

This past weekend I did a single skydive, except this one wasn’t like the others. Usually you jump out of the side of the aircraft and begin your freefall, but I did a jump out of the SkyVan this past weekend. The SkyVan looks like a giant, boxy van with wings. I’m not sure how it produces lift, but it does somehow. The cool thing about the SkyVan is that instead of jumping out the side, you jump out the back. This allows you to get a running start and jump rather than a standing jump. I was about 4ft away from the back and I did a running start and jumped out with my arms and legs straight (like a giant X) and then pushed my head back so I did a back flip. It was the coolest exit that I have ever done, even though I have only done 19. I hope they use the SkyVan more often because it is by far my aircraft of choice for jumping out of. Also, this past jump is the first time that I beat the plane to the ground. Usually, I’ll jump out and then pull my chute at a fairly high altitude (5,000ft) and slowly float down. Well this time I pulled at a lower altitude and had a smaller parachute so I floated down quicker and managed to beat the SkyVan. After all the skydivers exit, the plane dives back toward the ground at a very fast rate so I usually watch it land while I’m still 2,000ft in the air. But not this time though.

Two weekends ago I made a trip up to Gainesville to the University of Florida to see some friends. I went with my two friends Aaron and Adam and my girlfriend Becca. We had a blast and we already have some memories that we won’t forget anytime soon. We are already planning our next trip up there, so hopefully we can do that soon. That’s what I like about Embry-Riddle, we are pretty close to a lot of different universities all around Florida. Like UF, FSU, UNF, USF, and a whole bunch of others.

This past weekend I celebrated my two year anniversary with my girlfriend Becca. We started dating in our junior year of high school and here it is two years later and I can’t believe how quick time went by! I’ll spare all the mushy stuff, but she goes to Stetson which is right up the road and I love her to death. If she’s reading this . . . Hi Becca!!!!

I found this story recently and I thought that I would share it with all of you guys. The story is about a recent graduate of Riddle and how he is one of the project manager for a company based in Hong Kong. He created a remote control dragonfly that flies by flapping wings. You can read about the story here http://www.nytimes.com/2007/02/08/technology/08toys.html?_r=2&oref=slogin&oref=slogin and there is also a video on youtube.com. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pz0XNGJ-ep8

I thought that it was pretty cool that a graduate from Riddle went on to become the project manager of a company and design something completely different than traditional remote control aircrafts.

So all in all life is going pretty good down here in Florida and I am looking forward to the next couple of weeks. Hopefully everybody is having a good start in 2007 and staying warm. I know it’s been pretty cold around other parts of the U.S. but it is still very warm in Florida. I’m not trying to rub it in because I love the cold and I am mad that Florida is always so hot. I don’t like it when I skate to class in mid-February and start sweating. I view the warmth as a curse rather than a blessing. But if you don’t like the cold and you like to sweat 11.9 months out of the year, Florida is the place for you! It’s not too bad, just sometimes I wish it would snow, just for a day.

If anyone has any questions or comments feel free to drop me a line and I’ll do my best to answer anyone’s questions. Also, if you want me to cover a certain subject in my journal, just let me know. I am here for you!!!!! Later.


email: wasteofsoap@yahoo.com
aim: wasteofsoap
videos: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=blakeguiles

February 12

I haven’t done much around campus. I have been pretty much consumed in work, school, and Greek life. We’ve been holding events were we meet girls and I have been trying to set up fundraisers for Relay for Life. Also, Xi Man and Relay for Life are in March.

Most of my tests are this week or next week. I am not confident in the tests I had today. Right now, I am hoping I just pass. I feel that I should have been more prepared. I have another test in my AS 120 class. There’s a lot of new information that I need to learn. If you want to fly for a living, you have to have a true passion for doing it. What I do like in the class is the videos that my professor shows us. In class for the first 5-10 minutes, he shows us a video about flying. It can be a jet fighter flying low, a plane landing, or an aircraft that didn’t work. The professor is having a study session on Wednesday to prepare us for the test and make sure all of our questions are answered.

An interesting experience I had during work hours was that I had to proctor a quiz. I am really shy and don’t really like to speak in public, but I had to give them instructions. It’s a nice exposure to what professors or any public speakers go through every day.

On Saturday, I am going to be working the races. I am going to be working as one of the gatekeepers on the actual racetrack. I have to make sure the people have the correct tag on them before I can let them into the area. The traffic (both pedestrian and car) is congested. The speedway is on my way to campus so I get the opportunity to see all the traffic and mobile homes parked around on the area where I live. I am not sure how I am going to get to the speedway. I can park on campus because it is so close or I can try to walk it. I guess I’ll find out on Saturday.

If you have any questions, just ask. I hope everyone is having a great day.