This trip was planned a couple months ago when I knew my paper was accepted. But when it came close, I realized there were still lots of things to do. The only time I went to California was my 2009 trip to Vegas when I passed parts of California. So officially, this was my first time to California-the golden state. My advisor was kind enough to pick me up from San Diego airport after my 7 hours on the plane plus transferring time. The air was fresh and it was very comfortable-very different from Lexington. I guess after a long time on the ground, I did feel a little uneasy when my plane took off from the Blue Grass Airport. Although my fluid dynamics courses told me the chances of a falling plane is rare, I still pictured lots of bad scenarios on the plane. Anyhow, probably because I got older, I was quite exhausted when I arrived. The 3 hours difference in San Diego was something that I tried hard to adjust on the first night.
My schedule during the whole trip didn’t allow me to explore the city and the only time I had for myself was the dinner time. The fact that San Diego is a coastal city justified that I should have Mexican seafood. So after many years of not being able to have octopus, I ordered Ceviche, a cold raw fish dish, which was sour enough for me to lose my appetite. Being close to Mexico boarder was very interesting, so I took the trolley to see the boarder. The dramatic change from San Diego downtown to San Ysidro was convincing enough for me not to go to Mexico, at least not in the near future.
The conference went well, and it was a great opportunity to meet lots of important people in the field. I learned a lot in the conference not only from my own presentation, but also the mingling time during lunch and of course tons of academic sessions. My trip back home wasn’t that exciting, simply because it was an overnight flight. I barely slept on the plane because losing 3 hours back and 4 hours on the plane literally were not enough for any kind of sleep. But coming home always feels good no matter how tired I am.